Be confident through effective preparation
Zest Optical’s Steve McMurray discusses how to excel at the interview stage and the importance of the CV
10 December 2019
To some, acknowledging how best to prepare for an interview will be clear. But throughout my time recruiting in the optical industry, I have recognised that people can often go years, or even whole careers, without having an official interview, so wanting some guidance and counsel is only natural when the situation arises.
Researching the company and fully understanding the job role has to be the absolute minimum in terms of preparation. At Zest Optical we embrace the responsibility to make sure that our candidates are fully equipped, understanding the ‘real’ needs and wants, cultural fit and team dynamics of the company. We also ensure they know what to expect from an interview, example questions, what format it will take and even what dress code is relevant. I really believe this is where recruiters can shine, so don’t be afraid to ask questions. Being represented through an agency should be a positive experience and ultimately give you an advantage.
Sometimes interviews just click, but at Zest Optical we would rather not leave it to chance
Be encouraged to go the extra mile; a quick read through of a website might not be enough. If you are looking at a new practice, booking in for an eye test will give you helpful perception and insight. When transitioning into a field role with a manufacturer, talk to someone who is currently performing this type of role and, if time permits, shadow them for a day. But why go to all this fuss? It shows that you are engaged in the interview process. Remember, you don’t just have to convince the interviewer that you have the skills and abilities to do the job, you have to convince them that you are also better than others being interviewed for the role. More research will also be of benefit in helping you decide if it is the right role for you.
Researching the company and fully understanding the job role has to be the absolute minimum in terms of preparation
- Take time to research your interviewer
- Re-read your CV, the job specification and your research notes
- Work through a set of questions/scenarios
- Practice the journey to the interview location or place of work
- Arrange a final call with your recruiter to make sure that you have everything you need and all bases are covered
- Get into the mindset that this is the role you want.
Sometimes interviews just click, but at Zest Optical we would rather not leave it to chance. We are here to represent you appropriately and arm you with the tools to give you the best chance possible.
CV adviceI often wonder who came up with the recommendation that a CV should only be two pages long; I understand the relevance for when we used to fax or post CVs to clients, but now, when it is most likely that a CV will be read on a screen, I would suggest a more relaxed approach. The key is to make sure it is relevant for the person reading it and relevant for the job being applied for.
Working with a recruiter, especially one with an established reputation with its clients will help as we should know how best to pitch your CV and offer advice accordingly. Your CV is designed to do one thing: get you an interview. If you want to tell someone about your life, write a blog.
What to doOne size does not fit all, so be prepared to have a few versions of your CV, especially if you want to make the transition into a different part of the industry or a promotion. Make your CV precise in its relevance to the role and if there is a job specification then use similar language.
What not to doDon’t just cut and paste responsibilities from your own job description, outline what you have achieved and make yourself stand out. Finally, don’t over engineer a CV; make it clear, simple to read and quick for the reader to see your skill set and put you in the ‘would like to interview’ file
Zest Optical specialises in recruiting a wide range of roles within the optical industry. If you are looking for your next opportunity, contact the Zest Optical team on 0114 238 1723, or visit its website.
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