December 27, 2010

Interview Checklist

All set for your big interview coming up? Here's a quick checklist of things you'll want to make sure you have/do to help the interview go smoothly.

    At the very least, visit the company's website. Make sure you know what the company does and the type of client they cater to.

    Make sure your interview attire is clean, ironed, and ready to wear. For more on what to wear, view my other posts -- Part 1 & Part 2.

    Sometimes interviewers print out copies in advance, but just in case, bring 3-5 printed copies of the latest version of your resume.

  • PORTFOLIO (if applicable)
    Make sure you have a nice presentation of all your works whether it's printed and kept in a nice folder or displayed on a website. Portfolio items should be current, showcase various skills, and reflect your best work. You may want to practice going through it before the interview so you know what to say about each piece.

  • BACKUP PORTFOLIO MEDIA (if applicable)
    If you have a digital portfolio, do not count on the fact that your potential employer has reliable internet access or your digital device will cooperate with you. Put your portfolio items on a website, on a CD/DVD, in print, on a flashdrive, etc and keep them handy at the interview. It's always nice to have a back-up plan.

    Know where you're going and how you're getting there. Anticipate delays by planning to be an hour early. If you get there more than 5 minutes early, take some time to scope out the area surrounding the business or do some reading on an industry-related topic.

    Get your interviewer's work number and store it in your phone in case you get lost or it looks like you will be late.

    Be prepared with questions for when the interviewer asks "Do you have any questions for me?"
    Extra Tip: If there's a well known, potentially controversial news item in the industry now would be a good time to bring it up! Ask the interviewer what HE/SHE thinks about the issue and how it might impact the industry. It's always flattering when someone wants to know you're opinion on something so this is an easy way to compliment without coming off as a brown-noser. Plus, this demonstrates your up-to-date knowledge of the industry.

Think of something important that I don't have on this list? Feel free to post a comment with anything you think I may have overlooked!

Katie Hazard | Digital Artist, User Experience Designer | @katie_hazard
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