A student who has just graduated from a college or university, or even a mid-career professional with considerable industry experience, has to face similar circumstances while searching for a job. The typical steps in finding a placement or a job include the initial interview round. You may feel that cracking your interview is the first step in landing your dream job and you’re not wrong. However, before you step into the interview room, you need to be thoroughly informed about the company you are about to present yourself to. There are a few company things to research before an interview that you should be aware of and must always follow.
As it may be clear from the graph below, a majority of graduates contribute in the fields of retail, business management, finance and insurance. Regardless of the industry or company you are joining, you must know the essential things to research before a job interview.
Source: U.S Census Bureau
Research About The Company…But What Exactly?
The first thing you will be researching will be the company (of course!), its people and its various departments. Doing this is almost as natural as drinking water after a long marathon. But there are three key areas to focus on. Whenever you are looking at the company things to search before an interview, always remember to take a look at its mission statement, value statement and its stakeholders if you want to land a high paying job. This part usually covers the company’s history as well.
A company’s mission statement reflects the purpose of the business, what it aims to achieve and how it will achieve it. As the name suggests, a mission statement is the statement of a company’s mission, its future plans and ultimate goals. A mission statement is the bedrock or the spine of any business. Knowing the goals and objectives of the company will help you align your career goals with that of the company.
A value statement on the other hand is the detailed version of a mission statement. A value statement will be able to highlight the principles and culture of the company in question. If you are able to understand the values a company holds, you will be able to fit into the company very well. A value statement goes hand in hand with a mission statement and supports the ultimate mission of the company. Remember, your interview is a test of your personality and not your knowledge. You will only be able to convince the interviewer that the company’s values resonate with yours if you research and understand it thoroughly. This is one of the most essential things you must research before a job interview.
Recent News About The Company
If you want to land a job that is high paying and will help you take good care of yourself and your family, you need to suggest that you will be a pro-active member of the organisation who is irreplaceable. One of the most popular job application tips is that you must research the company’s most recent or relevant news. Doing so will show that you are a self-motivated person who is personally interested in the performance of the organisation. This is one of the most important company things to research before an interview.
Here’s where you can find out about your company:
- Their LinkedIn profile
- Social Media pages
- Company website
- Online press conferences
Often these are also the platforms where you will find your company’s closest competitors.
It’s Products & Services (Yes, even if it’s not directly related to your job role)
The most common mistake candidates make in interviews is not researching enough about the company’s product or services. Say, for example, you are applying for a role in a B2B company as a human resources executive. Both of these roles do not directly relate to the performance of the company’s product or service in the consumer market. But, the company’s offerings play a vital role in determining the personal attributes of its employees.
One of the most common questions asked in job interviews by interviewees is, “what do you know about us?” or “what could be the reason for our company’s performance dropping by x counts in the 2nd quarter?”. You may not know the answer to this question directly and you may not even be correct while answering this question. However, you should have at least something relevant to say. You will be able to answer such questions confidently only if you know about the company things to research before an interview.
Quick Checklist Of The Essential Things to Research Before a Job Interview
It may be possible that your job interview is just around the corner and you did not have enough time to research the company. In such cases, the following list of company things to search before an interview will come to your rescue.
Knowing your company’ most valued clients will definitely set you apart from your competitors. You must understand the relationship your company shares with its clients and how this relationship is maintained.
Its Unique Selling Proposition (USP)
Every business has its own USP. This is one factor that sets it apart from its competition. You may find that the USP of your company and that of its competitors is not very different, in such a case you should have a thorough knowledge of your company’s product and other related services.
The Interview Team
Knowing something about everyone on the interview panel will not only boost your own confidence but also impress everyone in the room. Moreover, researching about the management and the team members will bring out any common experiences you may share. This will help you prove your credibility to the company, first-hand.
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