Congratulations! You impressed the hiring team during your phone interview, and now you are scheduled for an on-site, in-person sit down. Luckily, there are a series of basic steps you can take before your on-site interview to ensure that you’re at your best. From the preparation to the presentation to the close, here’s what you need to know to land the job.
Job Interview Basics
Determine the dress code of the business where you will be interviewing. This seems like a simple step, but it’s easy to accidentally err on the side of under- or over-dressing for the occasion. When it comes time for the actual interview, make sure to treat everyone you meet during your interview with an equal level of respect, from the person manning the front desk to the CEO. When introducing yourself, use a solid handshake and make eye contact.
Now that you’ve refreshed your memory on the fundamentals of on-site interviewing, let’s drill
down into the behind-the-scenes preparation before the big day. To start, review the job description and be prepared to explain, in detail, how your work experience fits with the expectations of the position. Talking in generalizations won’t do, so be prepared with concrete examples from your background.
Take a moment to familiarize yourself with how each interviewer is connected with the position. Ask how they would be working with the new hire before making any assumptions about their role at the company. And make sure to tailor your responses to explain how you would interact with each interviewer if you were hired.
An on-site interview is also the perfect time to go into detail about your portfolio. Select an example of your work that aligns most closely with the work explained in the job description. Be sure to share your process behind the work, from the discovery phase through research to the final product. If your example was a collaboration, be specific about your role.
Finally, be prepared to be challenged and justify your decisions on a particular project, including
anything you might have done differently if you had to do the work over again. Make sure to detail the lessons that you’ve learned from past work, as this reflects both on your professional growth and your dedication to self-improvement.
Closing the deal on an on-site job interview begins and ends with adhering to some basic social
skills. As your interview concludes, you should clearly express your interest in the job, making sure to emphasize what you can do for them, not what they can do for you. Then ask your interviewer about the next steps in the hiring process. Finally, follow up your on-site interview by emailing a thank-you note to everyone you meet.