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Application and interview tips

Make the most of your application and be your best at interview.

Do some basic checks on the organisation you are applying to work for. Ensure you know the services the organisation provides and a little general knowledge about the business. Look at the vision statement or the company values, as if you are selected for an interview it is likely you’ll be asked about your knowledge of the organisation.

Ask yourself

  • How many staff does the organisation employ?
  • Where is the organisation located?
  • What are the organisational values?
  • What are the achievements of the organisation, what are they working on?


The person specification will provide you with the criteria you have to meet to be considered for the role, so study it to see if you meet the essential and desirable criteria. Don’t worry if you don’t meet it all, if you’re meeting around two thirds of the essential criteria, but are really keen and enthusiastic about applying for that job, then make contact with the manager and still apply.

The job description is there to tell you the main duties you’ll be performing on a day to day basis in the role. Go through the duties carefully to ensure this is the right post for your skill set.

Employers do not expect for someone who’ll start in the post and be fully trained already. There will be a corporate and departmental induction and on-going training to ensure new starters are able to perform their job successfully.

Make contact with the hiring manager

On most job adverts will be the contact details of the hiring manager. If you want any additional information, we urge you to make contact with the manager by phone or email. In most instances we recommend that you arrange an informal visit to take a look at the area you’d like to work in, to get a feel of the role.

This way you are showing your enthusiasm for the role by giving up your own time and also you’re gaining an understanding into whether the area would be right for you - which is equally as important.

  • Practice and Prepare - think about your skills and how you can demonstrate these
  • Formulate your own questions for employers - have one or two questions for the interviewer at the end of the interview 
  • Think about first impressions - arrive on time and look prepared
  • Make eye contact with the interview panel - use body language to show you are engaged with the panel
  • Try to stay calm - it is common to get nervous, so try some deep breathing
  • Follow up after interview - ensure you receive feedback after your interview
  • Use the feedback to reflect on