8 Essentials to Take to Your Interview

PUBLISHED18 October 2021

Interviews are nerve wracking. In the rush to get ready, it’s easy to forget to take important items. Use this checklist to help plan ahead and arrive fully prepared to impress your potential new boss.

1. Contact information

Getting lost or being stuck in traffic on the way to a job interview is panic inducing. Take a printed map and the full address of the company in case you have difficulty finding them. Don’t rely on using your phone or tablet incase reception is poor. Also make sure you have the company’s telephone number in case you need to let them know you are late.

2. Photo ID and visa documents

Some companies may want to see photo ID or, if applicable, proof of your visa status at interview stage. If offered the job, you won’t be able to start work until these documents have been provided so take them to your interview in case you are asked for them to speed up the process.

3. Your CV

It’s useful to have your CV to refer to during your interview. Take a neat copy in a professional looking folder so you can answer questions about dates, courses and work experience accurately. Take a spare CV in case one of your interviewers forgets their copy.

4. Interview notes

If you arrive early, use the time to have a read through your preparation notes. Sometimes your mind can go blank prior to an interview, so it’s good to remind yourself of a few key pieces of information you want to say in your interview. Only take brief, neat notes in your smart folder; if they look professional you may be able to refer to them during your interview.

5. Tissues

Having a pack of tissues or a handkerchief will be a relief if you sneeze or if the nerves get to you and you start sweating during the interview. They’re easy to keep in your pocket so there’s no excuse not to have one to hand.

6. Umbrella

If there’s a risk of rain, take a small, smart umbrella. If you have spent time dressing smartly, you don’t want to arrive looking like a soggy mess if it rains on your journey.

7. Portfolio

You have to be careful about divulging ‘work secrets’, but take examples of your work to prove your achievements, particularly if you work in a creative industry. Make sure your portfolio is well presented and clear enough to talk through across the table.

8. Questions

Interviewers like to know that candidates have researched the company and the role, and are keen to know more. Prepare between three and five good questions to ask your interviewer. Make sure they are relevant and show genuine interest in the company, growth plans, and the contribution and development of your role.

Preparing well for the day of your interview will increase your confidence and stress levels, and enable your interview to go as smoothly as possible. Give yourself the best chance of success and make sure you’re well equipped on the day.

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