The interview process is a critical component of getting the job. There are several factors to consider when getting ready for and participating in an interview. Below are recommendations to assist you with the interview process.

Do your homework:

In preparation for an interview, research information on the company as well as the position you are applying for. Showing that you have taken the time to better understand the organization can go a long way.


Always attend an interview in appropriate dress attire. This may include a blazer or jacket with a pressed shirt and pants or even a full suit. Men should wear a tie and women, if wearing a skirt, should wear nylons.  Try not to wear bright (a.k.a. – loud) colors, as they may be distracting and detract from your first impression. Avoid heavy perfumes and colognes and excessive jewelry.

Come with questions:

Inevitably, your interviewer(s) will ask if you have any questions. By asking questions, you also demonstrate your interest in the organization by taking the time to create questions.


Allow yourself enough time to get to the interview. This includes time for potentially getting lost or to contend with traffic!

Body language:

During the language, the interviewer is not only listening to your words but also observing your body language. Limit fidgeting movements such as tapping your foot or making large hand gestures. If you talk with your hands, try to keep your hands folded on your lap as much as possible. If you fidget, you my try to hold a small object in your hand, such as worry stone and keep your movements under the table.

Eye contact is also another important form of body language. Maintain eye contact but do not stare or look away for long periods of time.

Remember to shake your interviewer’s hand before and at the conclusion of your interview.

Just breathe:

If you find that your anxiety is affecting your breathing, take a longer breath than normal. Remember that your interviewer more than likely started in the very position you are applying for and may be challenged by the same tension while interviewing. We are all human!


 If your interviewer asks you a question that you are unsure of, do not have any answer for, or have not experienced, this can induce a surge of panic. Remind yourself that you have not experienced everything and be honest with the interviewer. Do not lie about work experience you have never had.


To show that you are interested in what your interviewer may be sharing about the organization, themselves, and the work environment, you may bring a notepad or portfolio and take notes. What you take away from the interview may also help with a follow-up thank you note.


Within 24 hours after your interview, send your interviewer(s) a thank you note or email. If you are unsure of names, contact the staff person that arranged your interview for the information. Also, you can write down names as they are given to you.

The following videos contain helpful tips to assist you with interviewing:

Kaye Bassman's The Best Job Interview Preparation Video:

Don Georgevich's Best Interview Answer to "Tell Me About Yourself":

Katherine Johnson's Job Interview Good Example

Virginia Western Community College's Mock Job Interview Questions and Tips for a Successful Interview:

Last Modified: 7/27/18