Published on October 28th, 2013 | by Amy Edwards1
5 Top Tips To Help You Tackle An Internal Job Interview
By Amy @BubbleJobs
Internal job interviews are a funny old thing. I mean, you already know the company and the employer so it’s not like you have to worry about making a good first impression.
Similarly, you don’t have to worry about being the right fit for the company culture (because you obviously already are!) and you don’t really have to worry about explaining why you want to leave your current employer because… well, they are your current employer and you don’t want to leave.
That said, internal interviews aren’t a walk in the park either. Yes, the company already knows you but they know you in your current position… which means there’s a chance they might not be able to envisage you in a new senior role.
Starting to see why internal interviews can be so tricky? Here are our top tips to help you get through it and (hopefully!) win that promotion!
1. Use Your Insider Knowledge To Your Advantage: First up, you know you’ve already got an advantage over external candidates because you already work there so it’s time to use it. When answering questions, refer back to your existing role within the company, what you’ve achieved and how you’ve already helped their company achieve specific goals. Don’t forget to mention what you enjoy about the company culture and why you enjoy working there – remember, external candidates won’t be able to make these points!
2. Do Your Research: Following on from that last point, you already work at the company which means there’s a chance you already know someone within the role that you’re applying for. Drop them a quick email to quiz them about their role, what they actually do day-to-day and how they prepared for their interview. OK, so there’s a chance they might not have time to respond or even want to – but there’s also a chance that they will. If they do, you can then use this information to prepare for your interview. Remember, you don’t know if you don’t ask!
3. Make Your Case: Like I mentioned earlier, the company already know you in one specific role so you really need to make your case on why you deserve this role and why you’d be the perfect candidate. Think about how you can transfer your skills and experience within your existing role to this new role – and what you could achieve for the company if you got the new role, compared to if you didn’t.
4. Don’t Be Cocky: When it comes to internal interviews, it’s easy to be cocky and think you have it in the bag – but guess what? You don’t! Remember, you’re interviewing for the job, not being handed it on a plate so you need to treat it seriously. Yes, it’s obviously different to an external interview but you should still treat it with the same respect. Be sure to do lots of preparation and don’t forget to treat the interviewer with the same respect you would any other interviewer (even if they are your mate!).
5. Be Honest: The thing about an internal interview is that the interviewer has access to all your past performance reviews so there really is nowhere to hide! If you have had a few blips or disagreements with your boss or colleagues since you’ve been there, just be honest. Now, I’m not saying you should bring them up unnecessarily, but you shouldn’t shy away from them either. Remember, there’s a chance they might bring them up so you need to be prepared. Think about what happened, why it happened and what you learnt from it.
When it comes to internal interviews, it’s all about being prepared and using your existing knowledge about the company to your advantage. If you’ve already got a good track record within the company and you can make a compelling case on why you should get the role, there’s no reason you shouldn’t stand a good chance of getting the job.
Have any more top tips for internal job interviews you’d like to share? Don’t forget; sharing is caring!