Expert Guide: How to get a job interview
Malcolm Finney of Management Dynamics looks at the ground rules for getting an interview with a prospective employer.
Much has been written about the selection interview. Books and articles abound offering advice to potential interviewees: how to sit; how to answer questions; how to ask questions; what to wear and so on.
The clear presumption is, of course, that an invitation for interview will naturally be forthcoming. However, sadly, it may not happen. Many potential interviewees will no doubt have experienced the agonising wait for a reply after an application for a job has been lodged. Statistically, the probability of a favourable response is often small.
So what determines whether a rejection or invitation for interview falls on the doormat one morning?
Whilst an element of luck often plays a part (as in most things) a review of research in this area reveals one or two interesting insights:
- Four years ago one researcher found that no less than 94% of employers confirmed that screening based on the application form was standard practice.
- Where the applicants required are otherwise than newly qualified graduates the three most important pieces of information used to screen a CV are "current job responsibilities", "previous job responsibilities" and "rate of career progression".
- The order in which information is presented may also affect judgement by the recruiter. It is thus sensible to have the "stronger" and "more relevant" information listed earlier rather than later.
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Malcolm Finney is founder of Management Dynamics which specialises in consultancy and training for the professions and financial sector. He is also an international tax consultant and can be contacted on 01727 863701 or via e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org