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Powerful Interview Preparation Tips

Landing an interview, whilst exciting, can also be nerve-wracking. Doing some well thought out and planned interview preparation can help your confidence and even impress your interviewer.

26/02/24 News

Congratulations on landing an interview! The good news is, you are now competing against a much smaller pool of candidates, with around 20% of applicants making it through to the interview stage.

Whilst this is definitely a time for celebration, the hard work isn’t over yet. Like your resume and cover letter, first impressions count. 30% of interviewers’ say they make their decision in the first five minutes. Creating a positive and memorable interview can be crucial in helping you stand out and progress to the next stage.

Here are some simple tips to help you navigate the interview process.

Creating a solid foundation of information

It can be overwhelming to know where to start and what information is relevant and worth retaining. An easy place to begin is where this journey first started- with the job advertisement. Refamiliarise yourself with the advertisement especially if you have access to the full job description.

By now, you will be well acquainted with the job tasks and responsibilities as your resume and cover letter will have already covered these. Now it’s time to dig deeper and discuss your work experience in detail, providing examples and key takeaways.

  • Go through each task and think about relevant, interesting and dynamic employment examples to match. Be thorough, give careful thought to the process you went through and the various elements that make up the task.
  • Try and think big picture. Was there a scenario or project that encompassed many of the required job tasks or skills?
  • What were your successes on-the-job or project? How did you know it was a success? Did you have any data/ feedback to back this up?
  • What were some of the challenges you encountered on-the-job or project? What did you do to rectify or resolve the issues? What were your learnings or actions that occurred as a result?
  • What changes have you implemented in your role? How did they come about?

Preparing for an interview is about more than just the job, It's about the organisation and people too. Have a thorough look over the company’s website and social media. This is a great way to get an idea of the organisational objectives/direction, company culture, community involvement and current/previous projects. Think about how your work experience could relate to any of their projects and weave this into the interview if possible. This shows the interviewer you have done your research!

Suggestions for interview questions

It’s not just the person conducting the interview that gets to ask questions. Interviews are a great opportunity for interviewees to find out more. It’s always a good idea to prepare your interview questions in advance and to have a variety of questions ready.

What are some great interview questions I could ask my employer?

  • What opportunities are there for training or progression?
  • What does success look like in this position?
  • What is a typical day like on-the-job?
  • Who are the people in my team?
  • What are the next stages in the recruitment process?

What if all my interview questions were answered?

This is why it’s important to prepare a variety of interviewer questions. If the job specific interview questions have been covered, then have some general interview questions at the ready.

  • What is the company culture like?
  • Where do you think the company is headed in the next 5 years?
  • What do you enjoy about your job/working at the organisation?

What if I have no interview questions?

Asking no interview questions during or at the end of an interview can be discouraging to your interviewer. Future employers want to see that you have done your due diligence and are interested in the position. Asking interesting, well thought out interview questions is a good way to show this.

Dress to impress

Now that you are prepped to sound the part, it’s also important to look the part. Dressing for an interview is all part of creating a strong first impression and showing that you are putting in the effort and taking the employment opportunity seriously. 65% of hiring managers say clothing can be a deciding factor when picking between two similar candidates.

It's always best practise to be overdressed for an interview, dressing more formally than you would if you got the job.

Interview clothing suggestions



Collard top or shirt

Blouse or shirt

Chinos or tidy trousers

Knee length skirt, dress or tidy trousers

Lace up shoes

Heels, dressy sandals or lace ups


  • Ripped jeans
  • Casual footwear like thongs or Crocs
  • Revealing clothing

If you need to update your wardrobe to get interview ready and require assistance, contact your Workskil Australia employment consultant. We can provide access to funding to cover the costs of work-specific clothing. There are also a number of other resources and organisations that can also help with this.

First impressions and self-expression

First impressions can be a daunting yet crucial piece of the interview puzzle. Unfortunately, you have limited time to make a good first impression, about 7 seconds in fact. Believe it or not you can achieve a lot in that time.

Here are a few tips to create a strong first impression.

  • Arrive early (5-10 mins)
  • Dress appropriately (refer to previous section)
  • Smile throughout the interaction
  • Open body language (no arms crossed or hands on the hips)
  • Confident handshake
  • Friendly and warm greeting

Quick tip – Always say yes if offered a drink. Having a beverage handy gives you an excuse to stop, pause and take a drink if you need a few extra seconds before answering a question.

During the interview, don’t be afraid to show your personality and build rapport with the interviewer. This helps them get to know you beyond your work history and can really help separate candidates with similar skills and experience. Ultimately, the right person for the job must be a good fit for the team both in ability and personality.

Quick tip – Mirroring the interviewer’s tone, gestures or body language can be a powerful way to establish rapport and a good indication of when it might be appropriate to sprinkle in your personality.

Still have questions? We can help!

The Workskil Australia team help thousands of customers each year put their best foot forward throughout the recruitment process. Our team can assist with interview question preparation, mock interviews to give you a practise run and can even help with transport options to and from the interview.

We are there to share in your excitement when you start your new job or to continue supporting you to find the right role for you.

Contact the team to find out more.

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