Top 5 Tips for Your First Interview

Written by Calvin Bowers

You have decided that you want to become an apprentice, but you have never been for an interview before. With so many other applicants out there, it can seem an impossible feat to overcome. Being scared by interviews is totally normal, but if you just be yourself and stick to these 5 simple tips, you will increase your chances by tenfold.

As Employing an Apprentice has a team of professionals who have interviewed and hired numerous employees and apprentices, we know how jobseekers can often trip up over the little things that could have been prepared in advance. These top 5 tips are easy to achieve and are sure to clearly set you apart from the rest of the applicants:

Be On Time

An interview is a little bit like a mini practice run for what it would really be like working together, as nobody wants to hire someone they can’t work with. This means that you absolutely have to demonstrate the minimum standards asked of you if you were to get the apprenticeship.

The most blatant one is punctuality. If you arrive late to an interview, the interviewer is most likely going to already consider you a failed applicant. In their minds, if you can’t do the very basic things asked of you in an interview, how are you going to handle any of the more important tasks given to you?

To make sure you are on time, it is a very good idea to find the address and practice getting there. Whether that is by walking, by public transport or by being driven, you need to know exactly how long it takes to get there and by which route is best, as it is not uncommon for there to be a closed road or a dead end that you weren’t expecting. Also, remember that it might take some time to navigate the building so you should always arrive early and try asking someone for directions once you get there.

Research the Company

An apprenticeship is training that leads to a position within the company upon completion. This means that in some ways you are not just being interviewed for the apprenticeship, but also the job role. In turn, the interviewer will want to see that you are invested and intrigued by the company and what it is doing. If you are not passionate about the field and the work, you may not be able to work well with their team or within the vision of what the company will become.

By knowing some background information about the company, you can confidently answer any questions they may have about your future role in their business. Showing that you have a deeper knowledge and understanding, even at a young age, will do wonders to set you apart from the rest of the candidates.

Prepare At Least Two Questions

Asking whether you have any questions is a quick way for an interviewer to know how engaged you are in regards to the field, the apprenticeship and the company. They are not expecting you to know everything about the role and want you to be someone who is confident asking questions when you are unsure. With this being said, it is recommended you should not ask anything that the interviewer has already explained, or that you could have found out easily if you had looked online. Some potential questions include:

  • What is the workplace like?
  • How much time will I spend working, and how much time training?
  • What kind of people will I be working with?
  • What do you like about working in this company, or this field?
  • Have previous apprentices stayed on in the company?
  • What are the next steps in the process, if this interview is successful?

Understand the Apprenticeship

The company is investing a considerable amount of time and money into you becoming their next apprentice, therefore the last thing you want an interviewer to think is that you only applied because you didn’t know what else to do, or because someone told you to. Apprenticeships can be life-changing opportunities, so it is important to enter the interview with that in mind. By knowing the basic ins-and-outs of what the apprenticeship entails, the interviewer will know that you are invested in it and will give the impression that you will complete the apprenticeship to the best of your ability.

Have a Practice

An interview can seem a high-pressure situation if you have never experienced one before. By setting up a mock interview that is as close to the real interview as possible, it will help you feel more comfortable and confident when it comes to the real thing. In addition to that, if your mock interviewer asks you a question that you weren’t prepared for, you still have time to go and figure out the answer before the real interview.

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Last Updated: Wednesday May 25 2022
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