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13/05/2014

Interview Preperation Tips

INTERVIEW TIPS AND TECHNIQUES

 

PREPARING FOR THE INTERVIEW

As the old adage goes ‘Fail to Prepare – Prepare to Fail!’

This is definitely true and it is essential that you prepare for any interview that you attend.

Preparation that we would suggest that you do beforehand includes the following;

 

1.       Research the organisation/role fully

·         Make sure that you research the organisation fully before your interview. You should always review the law firm’s website before your interview and also do as much general research about them as possible. Try and remember some key facts about the firm that you can then use at your interview to show that you have done your research. Information about the firm can also often be found on websites such as Linkedin and legal publications such as the Legal 500.

·         You should also find out who will be interviewing you and research these people beforehand.  You will often find that these people have profiles on the law firm’s website.  Again, try and remember some key facts about them that you can then mention at interview.

·         Read the job specification carefully before your interview, in particular the ‘pre-requisites’ and ‘person specification.’  Examine your track record and try and think of examples to prove that you have the pre-requisites required. You may re-use an example to provide evidence for a number of competencies, but some variety does help. Don’t be too vague - remember the key word here is ‘evidence’ and the interviewer will ask a lot of probing questions if they think you have not provided enough information.

·         Once you have researched the organisation fully, review your research and use this to try and think about questions that you can ask at interview.

2.       Review your CV thoroughly

·         Review your CV thoroughly before your interview.  You need to be confident with the content of your CV as you are likely to be asked about this at your interview.

·         Focus on your experience to date and your technical experience in the area of law that you are applying to work in.

·          In addition, think about any additional experience that you can mention at interview that you may have forgotten to put on your CV.

3.       Think about Key Skills!

·         Think carefully about the key skills that law firms look for in the current climate.

·         Examples of these include: good commercial awareness skills, good communication skills, good client care skills, good business development skills.

·         Think of examples where you can demonstrate these skills.  When you are at your interview you can then provide these examples to the interview panel.

·         Practice! You don't want to sound too rehearsed, but you do want to sound confident.

4.       Review CRA’s list of Common Interview Questions

·         Prior to your interview ensure that you review our list of common interview questions (see the next few pages) and try and think of ways to answer these.

·         Start anticipating questions and preparing your answers. 

5.       Plan where you are going and allow enough time!

·         On average interviews last about an hour. Make sure that you allow yourself enough time in the day to attend the interview.

·         Also make sure you research where the office is based and know where you are going! There is nothing worse than rushing to an interview and arriving feeling flustered.  Arriving late can also often reflect badly so make sure you plan your travel arrangements well in advance – always allow yourself an extra fifteen minutes travelling time. It is better to arrive slightly early (10 minutes ideally). Some organisations assess you from the moment you walk through their doors, and some ask their receptionists what they thought of you, so make sure that you conduct yourself in a professional manner as soon as you arrive in the office.

6.       Dress Appropriately

·         Always check beforehand what the dress code is for your interview.  If you have been put forward for a role by a recruitment agent check with your agent beforehand what the dress code is.

·         At the majority of law firm interviews, the dress code is normally formal office wear.  

·         If you cannot find out what the dress code is beforehand we would always suggest you wearing formal, smart office wear.