Securing a Job - A List of Do's and Don'ts

Hints and tips on what to do and what to avoid

Before the interview...

DO Thoroughly research the organisation, contact them for information if necessary.

DO Keep up-to-date with legislation and policies that may be relevant to the role.

DO Make a note of five or six examples where you have demonstrated best practice.

DO Prepare questions to ask as well as answers to more general questions regarding your talents and motivations.

DON'T Claim to have certain experience or achievements if you are unable to provide examples during the interview.

DON'T Get too worked up or nervous. The interviewers will be on your side, and there will be more interviews in the future if it doesn’t work out.

DON'T Attempt to assimilate too much new subject knowledge at short notice – know your strengths and be comfortable in talking about them.

During the interview...

DO Relax, speak clearly, take your time.

DO Give concrete examples based on your experience, try and make them engaging and instructive

DO Feel free to ask the interviewers to clarify or expand if you are not sure about a particular question.

DO Ask any questions you have prepared and thank the panel for their answers.

DON'T Make your answers overly long and vague, try and answer with precision and insight

DON'T Be over-familiar. Don’t be afraid to show your personality but maintain a mix of professionalism and approachability.

DON'T Criticise your previous employers or university, it does not reflect well on you.

After the interview...

DO Evaluate your performance and make notes relating to the areas you need to improve.

DO Ask for feedback from the panel if you are unsuccessful.

DO Feel free to ask more questions about the role if you are offered the job.

DO Consider every interview a valuable learning experience.

DON'T Feel pressurised to take a job if you feel uncomfortable with the role.

DON'T Become disheartened if you are unsuccessful.

DON'T Give up. Your career will have many twists and turns, keep focused and remember the reasons that have led you to become a social worker in the first place.