Job Interviews Are a Two Way Process

Job Interviews Are a Two Way Process

Written by

Cameron Blackwood

Stop looking at interviewing as a one way "grilling" - it's more two-sided than you may think!

Graduating university is a funny process - you’ll celebrate one of the greatest achievements of your life to date, only to usually be plunged into one of the hardest processes you’ll go through in your subsequent career - securing your first job post-graduation. One of the most daunting factors here is the job interview, and because of the way the education system is set up, you naturally fall into thinking of it like a test - but it isn’t. If you want a rewarding first job that will set you up for an amazing career, it’s vital to treat the interview process as two-way. It’s just as much about exploring the employer as it is the employer assessing the candidate.

It allows you to assess a role in greater detail

Self-assessment is one of they key aspects of any job interview - do you actually want the job, and do you consider its responsibilities as the sort of thing you could do day-in, day-out? Make a list of your priorities for a role throughout your job search, and ask questions relevant to that - some examples of this would include the level of day-to-day support you get from management, particular tools and technologies you may want to use, and if there is a set path for you over the next 12-24 months. An interviewer will be impressed by this, as you’re clearly thinking about what a role will be like on an average day.

You can get a better feel for company culture

It’s important to remember that you won’t just work in isolation, no matter the company or nature of the work - you will always work with others in some capacity. Whilst if you ask directly about culture, you may get some canned response around a company’s missions or values, you can ask questions that get a more useful response. You can ask around a company’s remote work policies, how they’ve worked with graduate employees in the past and their philosophy around developing their products. A really great question to ask the interviewer here

It's a chance to negotiate

In some graduate jobs, compensation (salary) and benefits are set. However, if they’re not, it’s important to remember that you could negotiate yourself a better deal. People often don’t try to negotiate in their first role because they’re just grateful to have it, but if you feel that you could add additional value over the offered salary, it’s great practice to try and negotiate a better deal for yourself using information you’ve already discovered! We’ll produce more information around negotiating your salary soon, but it’s important to remember that almost nobody loses a job offer for attempting to negotiate the terms - and if you are unlucky enough to have it happen to you, it probably wasn’t a company you would want to work for in the first place!

Photo by Mapbox on Unsplash

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