KWP_ALYSSE_0226_proofYou’ve submitted hundreds of applications, filled out countless online “profiles,” read through thousands of job postings and networked with your friends and family.  And now, you’re patiently waiting for a company to call you back to start the interview process.

So now what? Are you prepared for the phone call? You only have one chance to “WOW” the recruiter when they call you.  In order to be prepared for this call, there are five common questions you must be prepared for.  No matter what type of position you are interviewing for, there are questions that every job seeker should be prepared to answer on the very first call.

In The Recruiting Snitch, I provide top secret information on how you can figure out those questions that will be asked in a job interview and the correct format on how to answer each question.

Here are my top five favorite first round interview questions that every job seeker should be
prepared for:

1. Why are you interested in working here?

When you apply to a position you are not only showing interest in the role but you are also showing interest in wanting to work for that specific company.  So you should research each company as well as their competitors.

2. Why did you leave your most previous position?  Or, if you are currently employed, “Why are you looking to leave your current position?

If you are currently unemployed the recruiter will want to know why you left your most recent job and what you have been doing with your time while unemployed.  They are mostly interested to know if you were terminated.  They also want to see if you quit.  If you are currently employed, they will want to know why you are looking for something else.   They want to see what your motives are.  I address acceptable and unaccepted reasons to leave a job in The Recruiting Snitch. 

3. Why do you believe you are a fit for this role?

This question is your time to shine.  This is also your time to show the recruiter that you feel you are the best candidate for the job.  I also ask this question because I want to know that you remember the position you applied to and you feel you have met all of the qualifications and address to me all of those skills.  In The Recruiting Snitch, I explain in greater detail the science of a job description and how candidates need to only apply to roles where they meet the qualifications for the role. After reading The Recruiting Snitch, you will better understand how to answer this question.

4. Walk me through your resume.

I’m aware this is not a question, it’s a request.  The recruiter will ask you this because they want to see how you can articulate your work history to them.  They want to see what details you provide and what you chose to leave out. The recruiter is looking for a brief description of what you did at each company, what your title was at the time, how long you were there, and why you left.  I also like to hear how you got the job in the first place. In The Recruiting Snitch, I will walk you through how to answer this question.

5. What are your short term and long term goals?

I love this question because it receives some of the most interesting responses.  Here’s the secret, your career goal needs to align directly with the position you are applying for.  I was interviewing someone for a Bank Customer Service Representative and I had an applicant tell me they wanted to be a Nurse.  So this is telling me that if I were to hire her she would quit as soon as she started schooling to become a Nurse or that her mind would be on wanting to be a Nurse.  I would rather hire someone whose goal was to move up within my company or someone who wanted a career in banking or a related industry.   This is why it’s important to apply for positions where you see yourself growing.  In The Recruiting Snitch I discuss the importance on selecting a career that you are passionate about.  By doing this, you won’t have to be dishonest when a recruiter asks you this question.

As you can see, there are common interview questions you should know how to answer when a recruiter or company gives you a call.  These questions are relevant for all types of positions and will get you prepared for the first round.  To sum up, you should be prepared to answer why you are interested in working at the specific company, why you left your most recent job or looking to leave, and why you feel you are a fit for the role you applied to.  Lastly, you should be able to “walk” a recruiter through your resume and identify your short and long term professional goals.

To learn more about phone interviews, onsite interviewing tips and more, order The Recruiting Snitch.   Check back regularly for more insider knowledge on how to land the perfect job.