Have you recently undergone training for a career change? If so, you should be proud of yourself for undertaking a long, and often intensive, journey! While you are close to the finish line, there is one more hill left to climb; acing the post-career change interview.
Unlike the majority of interviews you’ve been on throughout your career, you won’t be able to completely rely on your past experiences as your main talking point. Instead, you’ll have to be strategic about how you answer specific career change interview questions. Here are five ways to make your case as the best candidate for the role:
Be prepared to talk about why you are making a career change
If there’s one question you’ll be asked in an interview, it will be ‘why are you making a career change?’ While there can be a variety of reasons for why you decided to make this move, you want to be avoid being vague in your answer; if you are, a hiring manager may assume you left your past career for the wrong reasons, such as not liking a former boss or the hours being too demanding. When asked ‘why are you making a career change,’ be sure to talk about how you are looking for new challenges and how your career goals have changed over time.
Highlight your transferable skills
Unlike most job interviews you’ve been on in the past, discussing past experiences in this interview may not hold as much value. Because of this, you’ll need to be more creative about how you make yourself the best candidate for the role. One way to do this is by highlighting your transferable skills during the interview. However, don’t just limit your transferable skills to technical ones! During this time, take some time to talk about how your soft skills will be an asset to the company.
Emphasize your willingness to learn
To combat the skills shortage and nurture talent from withing, many employers are willing to hire based on a candidate’s potential. This means that, even if you don’t have all of the necessary tools for the role when you start, an employer would still be willing to hire you if they think you can attain them over time. During the interview, be up front about what you aren’t proficient in, but be sure to pivot into discussing your willingness to learn. This could mean taking further courses or attending conferences, as well as giving previous examples of times where you’ve been able to learn on the job. When you’re making a career change, demonstrating your willingness to go the extra mile will leave a strong impression on the hiring manager!
Bring copies of certifications or training courses
If your career change has required you to acquire certifications or attend training courses, it doesn’t hurt to have records of them on hand! Even if it’s not necessary, having proof of your hard work demonstrates to your new employer that you’re serious about succeeding in a new role. Bringing these records in can also open the door to discuss your capabilities and what qualities you would bring to the role.
Gain an understanding of the company culture and environment
As you look to make a career change, it’s important to research whether the company is the right fit for you. Since you’ve spent a lot of time and energy in order to achieve your professional goals, it’s important for you to know your employer will help you meet them. Additionally, an employer will be impressed by candidates who not only think about developing the necessary skills for the role, but candidates who want to make sure they can succeed in the role over the long-term. As well as conducting research on your own, don’t be afraid to ask questions about the company’s culture during the interview! Read also: The Complete Guide To Company Research