We recommend that you read this guidance before attending your interview. We look forward to meeting with you soon.
Research before your interview is important.
If you’ve done your interview preparation properly, you will be confident and able to demonstrate your knowledge during the interview.
It is a good idea to familiarise yourself with our website. This will provide you with an insight into the services we provide and also to help you to devise any questions you might want to ask. Take a close look at the job specification and ensure you are familiar with it.
It will be helpful to think of some common questions that we may ask and prepare in advance how you may answer those questions.
We may ask you some competency-based questions:
- give me an example of how you have dealt with a difficult situation within the workplace?
- can you provide an example of when you have provided good customer service? What did you do to provide that service?
- can you provide an example of when something has not gone well? What did you learn from that experience?
For some vacancies, we may ask you to attend an assessment. If this is the case, we will tell you beforehand so that you have time to prepare yourself.
There are various types of assessments, so contact us if you need more detailed information. You can also visit our iTrent system to check your interview booking details and find out if you will need to take part in an assessment.
As with any interview, you will need to provide your proof of Right to Work in the UK.
We will need to see:
- your passport or your Biometric Residence Permit (UK)
- a proof of address document dated within the last three months (such as a bank statement, utility bill or a benefit statement)
If it is essential to the role you are applying for, you will also need to provide Proof of Membership documentation.
It is a good idea to have a pen and paper to hand to make any notes. If you have a notepad, you can make a note of any important information, or any questions you might think of during the interview.
It can also help to keep a copy of your application form to hand so that you can refer to it if when being asked about your previous experience and dates of employment. This will help if you are nervous too as you can refer to the documents if you forget any specific details.
If you are attending an interview in person, allow plenty of time for your journey. A late arrival does not make a good first impression. If you think you may be late, call us on 01245 606440 and we will inform your interviewer that you may be late.
If you are attending a virtual interview, you should make sure you have accepted or declined the session. If you don't confirm your attendance, we may offer the time slot to someone else.
- find a quiet space to have the interview
- check you have access to a webcam and microphone, or headphones if you prefer
- allow yourself extra time to log in and set up your audio or visual equipment so that you will be ready at the start of the meeting
Formal or smart dress code is best for an interview, even if the role that you are applying for requires casual dress. If your interview is being conducted virtually rather than in person, the same rules still apply.
When you first meet with your interviewer, smile confidently and try to maintain eye contact with your interviewer too. This will help you to look confident and professional. We are a friendly place to work and we will put you at ease upon greeting you.
Remember, the interview is your chance to demonstrate why you are the best candidate for the job. Be confident and professional. Remember that you are already halfway there because you were successful in gaining an interview.
Use a copy of your application to guide you through the interview. You can then select examples of your experience or education that demonstrate why you are a good candidate for the role.
If you’ve done all the correct interview preparation and you’re feeling confident, you shouldn’t feel too nervous.
Listen carefully to the interviewer so you don’t miss their questions and focus on the answers you’ve prepared.
If you are not sure how to answer a question, it is perfectly acceptable to ask for a moment to think about and prepare your answer.
Give yourself time to answer clearly and calmly and try to avoid rushing through the interview.
Remember, this is as much an interview for you as it is for us. The interview is very much a two-way process. It is a chance for you to learn if the role being offered is suitable for you.
As the interview comes to a close, you will probably be asked if you have any questions.
It’s a good idea to prepare some questions beforehand. These can be questions regarding the role you have applied for, the Council structure, or even about the interviewers themselves.
If you find that the interview process has already answered all of the questions that you had prepared, try asking an open ended question, for example:
- how long have you worked for the Council and what do you enjoy the most about it?
- what is the biggest challenge facing your team or department at the moment?
Asking questions is not only going to help you decide whether you are interested in the role, but it can also demonstrate that you’re interested and serious about the job.
Good luck for your interview!
We are committed to safeguarding vulnerable groups and expects all employees to share this commitment. This includes obtaining references and ensuring compliance to the Disclosure and Barring Service process.