How to research an employer before your interview
If you want to do well at interview you have to prepare! Everyone prepares answers, questions, and even their outfits but remember researching the employer is just as important.
Below are our top tips for how to research a company for an interview so you can successfully impress an employer with you answers.
Why is it important?
Researching a company before your interview is important because it can help you to feel more prepared and confident. It can also give you a stronger understanding of the role and what you should expect from the company if you’re successful. You can quickly see if it’s somewhere you like to work and will save you time in applying for jobs you’re not that interested in.
As well as helping you to feel more prepared, it will also show that you understand the company and are enthusiastic about the role. Doing in depth research about an employer shows them that you’re serious about the role and have a genuine interest in the company.
What should you look for?
- What the company does – products/services
- The industry it operates in
- Company standards and values
- Objectives and goals
- Customers/clients/target audience
Now you know what you’re looking for, here’s how to research a company for a job interview:
1 – Website
Most of this information can be easily found on the company’s website under their ‘About us,’ ‘Meet the team’ or similar pages. It’s a good idea to take note on recurring messages, values and themes that appear across the website as they’re likely things they want you to know. Dig a bit deeper on the website and try to find any stand out bits of information like when were the founded? Who started the business? What are their main goals? What are they looking for in their employees? Possible progression routes? To get even further information about a company you can also use websites such as Companies House. Make sure to note down all the important information so you can use it in your interview.
2 – Social Media
Most companies are now present on multiple social media platforms which can give you a better understanding of their cultures, backgrounds, and interests. The most popular platforms included Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram, and it’s a good idea to follow some of these pages to stay updated with their latest news and to see what they post/share. This can give you more topics to talk about at interview and can really impress an employer.
If you know who is going to be interviewing you, search their name on LinkedIn and check their profile for information on their role, background, and interests. This can also make you feel more prepared for your interview as you’ll have an idea of who you’re going to see before you get there which can calm your nerves.
Sites like Glassdoor and Indeed feature company profiles and reviews from current and previous employees to give you an unbiased insight into the company. This can also inform you on how the company treats its employees in terms of progression, management style, work life balance, and even shows you the average salaries.
Researching what candidates in similar graduate jobs were asked in their interviews will help you to prepare your answers.
How to use it
After all that work you want to ensure your research is going to make an impact by knowing how to best bring it into your answers.
Only bring it in when it’s relevant, don’t begin an interview by stating everything you know about the company, instead add in the facts you know when you’re asked questions such as:
- What do you know about our company?
- Why do you want to work for us?
- What do you think are our biggest challenges this year?
- Why does this industry interest you?
You can also bring in your research by asking the interviewer questions some questions. Remember you don’t want to sound like you’re reading of a script so there’s no problem in planning your answers and practising, but don’t write down every word and memorise it. You want the interview to flow naturally.
Being proactive can take you a long way, if you put in the work you’ll eventually get your break!
For help in your job search contact us today by applying directly or call us on 0300 303 2069 for an informal chat