Interviewing for a job is demanding, no matter if this is your first job or you’ve switched what feels like 100 times before. Knowing how to prepare, how to act in the interview and what to do post-interview can all feel like too much. And with more and more companies switching to remote market research jobs and interviews, there is another level of complication to things. When interviewing, should you approach it like it’s the same as it’s always been or is it something completely new? Is there a right way to interview? While there may not be, we believe there are some things you can do to ace an interview; it’s never too late to change up your strategy.
Prepare, Prepare, Prepare
Research the Market Research Company
Set aside time before the interview to research the market research company’s hiring process, the role, and people in the company. Sometimes, all you have access to is the job description. Read it. Make sure you fully understand the job you are interviewing for and how you’d be a good fit for the role. You may not know what the company is beforehand, especially when working with a recruiter, but if you do, research that company!
Why Are You Looking for a Role?
It’s okay to be looking for a new role in this booming job economy. Be comfortable with sharing why you are looking; whether you’ve been laid off, you’ve taken off and you are coming back after time off or you are just exploring your options, be ready to talk about it and tell your why.
During the Interview Phase:
When you are in person, it’s easy to know why to be early – you need to be able to park, get to your interview, and not be too stressed or frazzled because you were running around. The rules change however when you are doing an interview virtually. It may seem easy to just get online at the time of the interview but being early is still critical.
In Virtual Interviews, Make Sure to:
- Check the meeting time and check again.
- Give yourself time to prepare your lighting and background.
- Make sure your internet connection is solid.
You want to make sure you are entering the interview at the correct time – this means checking the timezone – and that the space behind you is free of clutter and distractions. Otherwise, the interviewer may be more concerned about your surroundings than what you have to say. One great way to combat this if you don’t have a good clean wall is to turn on a blur background which most video conferencing systems have available. Also, ensure that you have enough light in front of you – the interviewer wants to see your face, so check that they can. We live in a digital world and when virtually interviewing for market research jobs, messing one of these things up is potentially fatal.
Present Yourself Well
No matter if you’re going into an in-person interview or doing it virtually, iron your clothes, fix your hair and make sure your shirt is free of stains. Even when you take interviews through a computer screen, you want to treat it as if you were meeting the interviewer in-person and presenting yourself well there.
Share Highlights and Stories Without Overselling Yourself
When questions are asked, slow down and take the time to answer them correctly. Break down your answer. Tell the interviewer the situation and task at hand. Go on to tell them how you resolved the problem and then how that brought you to the result. What did you accomplish? What was your responsibility? You want to sell yourself without overselling.
Ask the Hard Questions
Be ready to ask hard questions; what is the culture? What are the expectations of management? What direction is the company going in the future? Last but not least, always ask what the next steps are. This interview could lead to a potential career change. It’s more than “oh, this is an exciting opportunity.” Figure out, through questions, if this position is correct for you.
Take Time to Reflect
After the interview, take time to review how it went. How could you do better next time? Are you indeed a good fit for this position? Is the position a good fit for you? Try to fully understand how the interview went – just because an interview took a long time doesn’t mean that it went well. Despite the way many think, the candidate should not be the only one talking. The sign of success in an interview is a connection between interviewer and candidate. Just like in many parts of life, a good connection between the interviewer and candidate provides a better foundation than one person talking for a long time.
Always Send a Thank You Email
Always, always, ALWAYS send a thank you email after the interview. Go deeper than “thanks for the interview.” Take something away from your self-reflection and point out why you would like to move forward in the interview process. Bring up specifics from your talk with them as well – people remember specifics and by solidifying those details in their minds, you solidify yourself in their minds. And as always, thank the interviewer for their time.
Based on these Top Interview Tips from a Market Research Industry Expert, whether interviewing in person or virtually you can leave each interview feeling confident when applied. Always remember to show up prepared and leave a positive impression. Reach out today if you’d like more help or want to apply to any of our available positions!