Tips on Interviews

Preparing for Your Interview

UOW Recruitment - Tips

It may be daunting, but an interview is also an opportunity for you and the employer to determine how well you suit the role.

Every interview is different, so here are some basic tips to help you feel more prepared and present yourself in the best possible way.


Being well-prepared will help you feel more confident and relaxed in an interview – and eliminate any element of surprise. Your preparation should encompass not only familiarising yourself with the position, but also how you will relate your skills, experience and achievements to the requirements of the job and the needs of the University.

  • Familiarise yourself with the position description
  • Research the relevant department/faculty/division
  • Think about your achievements and the lessons you have learned. Prepare some examples
  • Speak to the recruiter to find out what you can expect at the interview
  • Practise your responses or do a mock interview
  • Leave yourself plenty of time to get to the interview. If you are unfamiliar with the location, obtain accurate and detailed instructions on how to get there. Be prepared for issues such as parking or public transport delays
  • Dress appropriately – it's better to be more formal than too casual

At the interview

This may be the only opportunity the selection committee has to determine whether you are the most suitable candidate for the position, so ensure you use the time efficiently.

  • Relax and be confident
  • Engage the selection committee in your responses
  • Listen to questions carefully. Take time to think about your responses and structure them to best answer the questions
  • Keep your answers clear and concise. Be brief, but don't compromise your answers by leaving out information
  • If you are unclear about a question, clarify it or ask for it to be repeated
  • Ask any questions relating to the position, projects, department, and anything that may impact your desire to work at UOW
  • Don't ask questions purely to fill in time
  • For information on the salary, work hours, and terms and conditions, speak to the recruiter or contact officer listed on the advertisement
  • Be yourself

Competency/behavioural questions

Many interviewers ask competency or behavioural questions, based on the principle that past behaviour predicts future actions. Use real examples in your responses – explain what you did, not what you would have done. It is acceptable to use an example in which the outcome was not positive if you can demonstrate how you learned from it.

The STAR model may be useful:

  • Situation: explain the context and challenges of the situation
  • Task: what was your aim?
  • Action: how did you achieve the desired outcome?
  • Response: how did colleagues respond, and what was the result?

Please contact the recruitment team with any questions about your interview.

Apply for a position now.

Last reviewed: 26 April, 2012