Do you have an in-person job interview coming up soon?
First, you should congratulate yourself for coming this far! The biggest hurdle to applying for jobs is having your application or your resume noticed by a hiring manager.
So, if your application has captured their attention, you already have an “in!” The company will most likely think that you are a potentially good candidate for the position you applied for.
The interview is your chance to prove to them that you’re the right person for the job.
And part of doing so is having everything you need to do well.
Here are seven things to remember to bring to your next in-person job interview.
3 Must-Haves for an In-Person Interview
1) 2-4 (Or More) Copies of Your Resume
It’s possible that the employer may have already printed out your resume, but it’s better to be on the safe side; bring 2-4 copies of your resume – or potentially more. Use one copy for yourself to reference throughout the interview.
Bringing more than two copies is helpful because you never know how many people are going to interview you. It could be anywhere from one to six.
By bringing copies of your resume, you will look prepared for your interview and demonstrate professionalism to the employer.
(A quick note: of all of the items we suggest that you bring in this blog post, this is the most important item you should bring to your interview. Definitely don’t forget to bring copies of your resume!)
2) Paper and a Pen
Try to take notes during your interview, if possible; you will want to write down anything that stands out about the interview, the company, or the position itself.
Moreover, though the person (or people) who interview you may give you their business card(s), don’t count on it. If they don’t, use your paper and pen to capture their contact information (name, position title, phone number, and email address) so you can follow up with them afterward.
3) At Least 2-3 Questions About the Company That You Would Like Answered
Interviewers are always impressed when an interviewee has done some research on their organization and can ask informed questions.
Some examples of questions to ask which Big Interview highlights include:
- “Can you tell me more about the day-to-day responsibilities of this job?”
- “What do you think are the most important qualities for someone to excel in this role?”
- “What do you like best about working for this company?”
- “What are the next steps in the interview process?”
4 Optional Items to Bring to Your Next In-Person Interview
In addition to bringing copies of your resume, paper, a pen, and a list of 2-3 questions to an in-person interview, there are four other optional items you can bring to help you be successful.
Whiley these aren’t required, they are good to keep in mind if they apply to you.
The last thing you want to happen when you show up for an in-person job interview is to have stinky breath. Having some mints on hand will ensure you have fresh, minty breath when you meet an employer.
2) Copies of Recommendation Letters
Do you have any recommendation letters or emails from former employers, teachers, or mentors? Bring them to your interview! You’ll be able to provide outside proof that you’re a great employee. After all, bragging about yourself is all well and good, but nothing beats the word of a reference.
A good rule of thumb is to bring as many copies of your recommendation letters as you do of your resume.
You can also use reference letters during the interview. Let’s say that the employer asks you a question like: “What would your last employer say about you?” Instead of giving a general answer, point to a reference letter. How much more powerful of an answer would that be?
3) Copies of a List of 2-3 References
Not all employers require that you provide a list of 2-3 references, but many do. Having a list of references is especially helpful because you can give the employer all of the information they need in one place.
On your reference sheet, use the same header that you use on your resume (e.g., your name, phone number, email address, and if applicable, your address and/or a link to your LinkedIn profile). Then type the word “References” on the top of your sheet.
Next, list 2-3 references who have consented to be references for you. (This is particularly important. Make sure your references are okay with advocating for you. You do not want someone to give you a bad reference.)
Here is a recommended way to list your references:
- John Doe
- Former Supervisor: Known 5 Years
- Position Title: Food Service Manager
- Company: Fast Food USA
- Address: 1500 Somewhere Drive, Somewhere, OH 12345
- Phone Number: (555) 555-5555
- Email Address: email@example.com
Make sure to bring several copies of this reference sheet – again, as many copies as you bring of your resume. So, 2-4 (or more) copies would be advised.
4) Your Portfolio
Do you have a print or virtual portfolio of any of your work? Some positions like graphic designers or photographers might require that you bring in a portfolio to your in-person interview.
But even if it’s not required and you have a portfolio of any of your work, bringing it your interview will allow you to show off some of the awesome work you’ve done.
If you have a print portfolio, assemble it into a notebook or binder with a professional presentation. If you have a virtual portfolio, you can show it to the employer on a tablet.
With these items on hand, you’ll be set for your next in-person interview!