Interview tips when interviewing for a temporary or contract job – The tricks of the trade
In my opinion it is vital to put the same amount of work into preparing for an interview for a temporary or contract job as you would for a permanent one. The trick is tailoring your answers to that particular job, in doing so you do need to answer the questions carefully.
The employer interviewing you needs to feel confident you will commit to the job for as long as needed. They will not be happy to employ you on a temporary basis if they feel you are still actively looking for a permanent job.
3 Key attributes to demonstrate at interview:
how you communicate can never be underestimated. Be able to talk through your CV fluently. Be ready with examples of your key strengths. You need to be able to identify what you have contributed to your most recent assignments and show where you have added value.
if you have worked within a few different organizations than each of these will have their own way of doing things. This gives you an advantage. Make sure to emphasise this in an interview. Let the client know that you are more likely to be adaptable to new situations given your previous experience.
often the role is to cover sick leave or holiday leave and is an urgent fill. Do show flexibility in relation to timelines and your availability to start.
Preparing for the interview
Take the time to prepare properly for the interview, check out the company website. This will give you much more confidence and enthusiasm when talking about the company. Be very familiar with any products the company manufacture or distribute. Are there any good news stories on the website? This is a great way of breaking down any formal barriers of the interview and allows it to become more conversation based.
Often when interviewing for a temporary job the questions tend to be a lot more direct, don’t be put off by this as you are expected to settle in a lot quicker.
Typical question employers tend to ask:
Tell me about yourself?
Get to the point quickly here, the employer doesn’t want your life-story, what they really mean is why do you feel you are relevant for the role, highlight your strengths as to why you are suitable.
Why are you suitable for the role?
This is where you need your examples ready. Remember you are going to be hired because you have the relevant skills and experience. When you are answering technical questions provide detailed answers of where you have performed those tasks previously.Hiring the wrong temporary worker can cost money and more importantly upheaval among the other members of the team.
How active are you on the jobs market?
Don’t fall into this trap. If you are actively looking for opportunities you need to get across your ability to commit. Keep in mind the employer is looking to see if you will complete the assignment and not leave early to go to another permanent role.
What would your last employer say about you?
Be ready with your reference details, phone numbers etc. this is key and often can give you the edge -remember speed is everything.
Closing off the interview:
Don’t be afraid to get across your interest in the role and company. Be positive and upbeat about the role and ask lots of questions. Let the employer know you are interested and reiterate that you are available immediately. Ask the employer their initial reaction of you and your suitability for the job. Remember a lot of temporary workers get offered on the spot.
Finally always call your consultant straight after the interview, this demonstrates your level of interest and can be passed on to the employer immediately.