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Working PREPARE FOR EMPLOYMENT Preparing for a Job Interview

Preparing for a Job Interview

For more information on preparing for a job interview, please contact one of the employment service agencies in Leeds & Grenville:

What is a job interview?

In Canada, before an employer will offer you a job, usually there is an interview process. After the employer reviews your resume and has an interest in hiring you, they will arrange a meeting with you. It is important to make a good impression on the employer at your interview. It is their chance to see if you have the skills and attitude they are looking for. It is also your chance to see if you want to work at the organization.

How to prepare for an interview?

Key points  are summarized below.


Research the organization you will be interviewing with. If you can, find out some information on the interviewer. It may be helpful to know what role they hold in the company and if you would be working closely with them. From your research, develop a list of questions you will want to ask the interviewer about the organization and the available position.

How to make a good impression at a job interview 

The way you present yourself at an interview can make the difference to your success in obtaining the job, even before you speak.  In addition to your skills and experience, employers are looking for confidence, and enthusiasm with proper clothing and appearance.

Throughout your interview , you will need to show you are a "fit" for the job; that you understand what the job involves , how the company or organization wishes to present itself , and what you can do to contribute to its success.

If you are unsure what to wear, just ask.  Check with someone you know who works at the company, contact an employment counsellor, or call the human resources department and say, "I would like to understand the dress code within your company so that I can be properly dressed for my interview." Don't be afraid. This will actually show them your courtesy and interest.  Remember, employers always prefer to hire someone who wants to work for them.

General Appearance 

  • Make sure you are well groomed, following the rules of hygiene suitable to the workplace culture. .
  • Wear no personal scents ( aftershave, cologne).  Many businesses are now scent-free.
  • Be sure you do not smell of tobacco smoke. 

What to wear 

  • Dress for the job. If a suit is not worn on the job, there is no need to wear one to an interview.  Wearing a suite may show that you think the interview is important, but it might indicate that you do not know what the job involves. 
  • Men should wear dress shirts or other collared shirts, long dress pants (no jeans), shoes and socks (no sandals).
  • Attire for women: skirts or dresses which are not revealing when you sit; dress pants,blouses/jackets/sweaters; no low cut or sheer tops; no sandals or flip flops.
  • Women should apply makeup in moderation, suitable for the workplace and workplace culture. 

Behaviour at the interview 

  • Arrive at the interview about 10 minutes ahead of schedule. 
  • Treat the receptionist with respect. She/he is often asked about you after the interview. 
  • Take your lead from the interviewer about shaking hands.
  • Wait until you are offered a chair before you sit down. 
  • It is a standard practise in Canada, to make eye contact with your interviewers throughout the interview.  
  • During the interview, show what you can do for the company, not what it can do for you. 

What to bring?

  • a copy of your resume and cover letter
  • the contact information of three references
  • a list of questions you want to ask the interviewer
  • samples of your work that are related to the job you are interviewing for (writing samples, outlines of projects you have organized, employee awards)

For additional information on preparing for a job interview see the Government of Canada Job Bank information http://www.jobbank.gc.ca/content_pieces-eng.do?cid=208