IT Interview Tips: Your Guide to an Exceptional Interview

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Securing a job is important, but you can't land a new opportunity until you ace your interview. We've put together some great tips and tricks to make sure that your job interview goes smoothly. From social media, to Q&A & even to salary negotiations, this slideshow has the information you need to succeed when interviewing and going through the hiring process.

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  • Kristin FINISH by 2pm ET
  • Kristin FINISH by 2pm ET
  • Kristin FINISH by 2pm ET
  • IT Interview Tips: Your Guide to an Exceptional Interview

    1. 1. CLIENT LOGO HEREFace-To-Face Connections:Your Guide to an ExceptionalInterview03/21/13
    2. 2. Agenda2• 5 Tips for using social media to land a job• Doing your homework• Answering questions• Asking questions• Discussing salary• Dressing for success• The follow-up• Resignation & counter offers• Q&A
    3. 3. 5 tips for using social media to land a job31. Use Google Alerts to be notified when news about a potential employeris available. Tools like Tweetdeck and Hootsuite will also enable you tofollow job boards & staffing companies for up-to-the minute openings.2. Use the company search feature on LinkedIn to see who has recentlyjoined or left potential employers.3. Upload an “elevator pitch” in your Twitter bio. Select a professionalavatar & custom background that gives details about you and yourqualifications.4. Make work experiences and aspirations central to your Facebookprofile. Don’t fear personal details as long as you’re comfortable talkingabout them in an interview setting.5. Complete your platform’s profiles. Set privacy settings appropriately sopersonal photos are only viewed by personal friends. Remainconsistent among all of your online platforms.
    4. 4. Be sure to do your homework!4Homework on the company•History•Current Situation•The future•Sources to use:• Your recruiter• Company websites• LinkedIn• Google+• Glassdoor.com• Annual reports• Business associates• PeriodicalsHomework on the position•Primary responsibilities•Expectations•Questions to ask:• Who has beensuccessful and why?• What technical skillsare required?• Who failed andwhy?• Who does theposition report to?Homework on yourself•Career history• Dates, positions,responsibilities etc…•Strengths & weaknesses•Brush up on newaccreditations & trends•Prepare to cite specificexamples of your personalachievements•Highlight career progress•Reflect on your success
    5. 5. Prepare to answer the questionsAsk a friend, neighbor, relative or recruiter to help you conduct a practiceinterview & prepare to answer these typical interview questions:5
    6. 6. Now that you’ve rehearsed your answers, be sure to askthe right questions6Good interviews are usually free-flowing conversations, not one-sided speech or a jarringQ&A session. Here are some great questions to ask during an interview:
    7. 7. Preparing for the salary discussionYou should never start discussions about salary during your interview, however attimes, the interviewer will bring up the topic.Here are some points to consider if they do:•Most companies want to make a fair offer•They want to bring new employees on board at a salary level that providesincentive to excel while remaining consistent with their existing compensationstructure.•Manage your expectations•Speak with your recruiter or utilize resources like our salary guide to get anaccurate understanding of what the position should earn in your specific location.•The position is the single most important element of your decision•A quality position and the opportunity to work with people in a dynamic workenvironment offer many rewards that money can’t buy. Make sure the job is a goodfit for you before accepting an offer.7
    8. 8. Preparing for the salary discussionYou should never start discussions about salary during your interview, however attimes, the interviewer will bring up the topic.Here are some points to consider if they do:•Get the whole picture•Compensation packages can be arranged & rearranged to satisfy both you andthe company.•Keep your recruiter involved•Part of our job is to handle sensitive negotiations. We can often offer alternativesthat will satisfy both parties, so keep us involved in every part of the process toensure an acceptable solution.•Salary discussions•It’s best not to name a figure if at all possible in an effort not to over-or-underprice yourself. If you are asked directly, say something like “I am very interested inthis opportunity and I feel I can make a meaningful contribution. I am currentlyearning $____ per year. I would be open to a competitive offer.”8
    9. 9. Dressing for successThe interview may be face-to-face, but it’s important that the entire outfit conveyconfidence, professionalism & respect for the interviewer. Although there is no one-size-fits-all dress code, here is a general set of rules for IT professionals:•Technical Position•“If you’re applying for a technical position, you won’t need a suit.” – CaroleMartin, former Monster contributor and author of Boost Your Interview IQ•Women: Sweater or blouse and slacks or skirt•Men: Collared shirt and khakis or slacks•Managerial Positions:•“Upgrade your attire if you’re interviewing for a higher-level job. You dress inthe best clothes you have. Dress in the best clothes you have.” – David Perry ofPerry-Martel International and author of Career Guide for the High-Tech Professional•Men & Women: Suits and pant-suits9
    10. 10. Follow through by following upSending a follow-up letter is a great way to remind the interviewer about your skills,communicate things you forgot to say & courteously thank them for taking the time to interviewyou. Here are a few points to consider when sending follow-up letters:•Send the letter as soon as possible. Ideally, your letter should go out the next day.•A hard copy letter is preferred, but an email is acceptable. You can also send a LinkedIn note.•Be as brief as possible. It demonstrates respect for the interviewer’s time.•The body of the letter should accomplish four main objectives:•Thank the interviewer for their time•Reiterate interest and enthusiasm in the company and position•Highlighting your experiences and accomplishments•Asking if you can proceed to the next step.•Make sure someone proofreads the letter before sending it off to your recruiter for a review.10
    11. 11. Sample follow-up letterDear Mr. Smith:I appreciate the time spent with you discussing XYZ Company and the ______ position. Itwas a pleasure meeting with you, _____ and _____. I feel my qualifications and skill set in______, ______ and ______ reflect those necessary to be successful at XYZ Company.At ABC Corporation, I successfully installed a state-of-the-art ______ system on-time andunder-budget, as well as managed a staff of up to fifteen professionals. I am confident that Ihave the experience and drive to successfully manage the _____ Department.I feel an even greater excitement level about the opportunity because it will allow me toattain my goals of ______, ______ and ______.I look forward to our next meeting to discuss this in greater detail.Sincerely,Your name11
    12. 12. How to handle resignations & counter offersWhile resigning from your current position can be emotional and stressful, thereare several things you can do to make the process go smoothly.•Put it in writing•It is formal and will become part of your permanent record. It is for your own protection.•It will help you keep the focus on positive aspects of your career move rather than any negativeaspects of your old situation.•It relives the pressure of having to speak first.•The sooner you leave the company, the better•You are in a lame duck position.•The company will get by without you.•You should invest your time and energy into getting ready and rested for your new opportunity.•Do not talk or entertain counter offers•What kind of company are you working for that you have to threaten to resign before they pay youwhat you are actually worth?•When times get tough, your employer may begin the cutbacks with you.•The fact that you considered leaving may hurt your chances for a promotion.12
    13. 13. QUESTIONS ?

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