One of our Student Ambassadors attended Bloomberg's interview skills workshop - here is what happened.
Do you ever get those overwhelming nerves when you get told you were lucky enough to be selected for an interview? Then that sudden panic about what may be asked during the process? I know I do.
Bloomberg’s Interview Skills Workshop helped settle some of those nerves, providing an in-depth overview of the dos and don’ts of an interview and suggesting some tips for preparation.
Broadly, Bloomberg is an international financial, software, data and media company that provides the information people need to make decisions. Entry level recruitment opportunities are offered in:
- The data department
- Client service roles
- General support roles
However, the information the Bloomberg representatives gave relate to any interview you may attend.
- Research the sector, the company, department, the job role, the business’s plans and objectives, the structure of the team and the skills they value and adapt your CV accordingly.
- Abuse your network. LinkedIn provides endless possibilities for connecting with or looking up people who have similar roles in the company. If you personally know someone who works in the company, exploit that person for information. If the company knows that you know someone who works for them, they will expect you to have a better understanding of the job and company than someone else.
- Practice delivering your answers in a clear and concise manner. Why would you be motivated for this role? What are we looking for and how do you meet this criteria?
- Be prepared to speak about anything on your CV.
- Know the logistics of the interview. Know the dress code, who you are meeting and always get there 10-15 minutes early.
- Be organised. Bring extra copies of your CV and have questions prepared.
- Be informal
- Speak negatively about previous employers
- Put things on your CV if you can’t discuss them
- Be distracted. Put your phone away
When being interviewed, most of the time we will be expected to provide an example of when we overcame an issue. We were taught to do this in a clear and concise manner. As a trick, they taught us to answer using the STAR method.
S – situation (set the scene)
T – task (what was the problem?)
A – action (what did you do to remedy the problem?)
R - result (did you solve the problem?)
By using this method, we would answered the question that was set for us in a succinct way, without ending up in spiralling down a worm hole! To prepare for an interview, we were told to look at the competencies in the job description and prepare examples for each competency using this STAR method.
We then discussed the three different types of questions you may be asked in an interview:
The first being a scenario question, requiring you to answer what you would do if x happened. These are difficult to prepare for. However, a key tip was to familiarise yourself with the competencies because these will be the things they are looking for in your answer.
Secondly, the competency questions, requiring an answer to: “tell me a time when…” These questions must be answered using the STAR method to tell the story. Be specific and show how you went above and beyond to solve a problem.
Thirdly, there are the strength based questions. These are used to see what knowledge you have about the company, the sector and the role and what you enjoy doing. The interviewer uses these to see if you have prepared for the interview. So, it is essential to do your background reading before the interview.
Finally, some key things to remember. Always be honest in an interview and be honest about what you want out of the job and your career. The interviewer wants to be able to develop a relationship over the course of the interview so they can really get to know you. It should feel like a two way conversation, so don’t be afraid to ask questions back. Ultimately, the interviewer isn’t trying to catch you out. They are just trying to see if you would be a good fit for the job they are hiring for.
Want more help with interviews? Check out the Careers Service get started guide to aptitude tests, interviews and assessment centres for lots more help and advice.