by ResumeEdge.com - The Net's Premier Resume Writing and Editing Service
Just as you must know yourself before you begin an interview, so too must you know
your prospective employer. Knowledge of the company helps you tailor your
responses to questions and gives you confidence. It shows the interviewer that
you care about the company and want to make a well-informed decision, and it
gives you fodder for posing impressive questions to the interviewer. All of the
information you gather will help you anticipate the company culture and gauge
the expectations that they will have of you.
a minimum, you need to discover the company's purpose and trajectory. The
employer will be convinced that you do not care about the job if you have to ask
what they do. Look on the company website to discover how the company presents
itself. Make sure you can articulate what the company mission statement is. If
the company has a tag line, memorize that as well. If available, request a copy
of its annual report. For newsworthy companies, check media sources like
newspapers and business magazines to find out where the company is going and
what its challenges are. Discover if they have any specific goals for the near
future, like the production of new products or new partnerships. Talk with
someone who works there or has worked there to find out whether the company
fulfills its mission.
also must familiarize yourself with the company's market. If they sell a
product, who are their target customers? If they provide a service, to whom is
it rendered? What is the nature of the products or services? These are the kinds
of things you should be conversant in when you sit down for an interview. In
addition, it is useful to know who are the company's competitors. Is it a
business down the street, a conglomerate, a new or established company?
out what the structure and scope of the company is. Besides identifying whether
the company is small, medium, large, or enormous, you need to know its
configuration. Is it a division of a larger company or owned by a parent
company? Does it own other companies? What are its strategic alliances? Is it a
local, national, or international company? Also discover whether the company has
divisions and what they are. It is also useful to know at what stage of growth
the company is. Have they recently grown or laid off employees? At what rate?
Using your internet, media, and personal sources, uncover as much as you can
about the internal workings of the company.
it is useful to know how the company makes its money. Who are its clients or
customers and how many of them are there? Is it a family-owned business or a
start-up company funded by angels? Getting your hands on a share-holders report
could be very illuminating as you determine what the company's earnings or
losses are. Are their profits increasing or are they mired in debt? Is there
another company funding them for a period of time at a loss? Compiling this
information will enable you to assess the financial stability of the company.
you will benefit from knowing how the company treats its employees. Interviewing
current or former employees will give you the information you need to determine
whether you are likely to receive the kind of treatment you desire or require.
How much of the company earnings are shared by employees? What are the salary
ranges for various positions? Gaining this kind of information will help you
assess a compensation packet that you can feasibly negotiate. Do not forget to
uncover the benefits package offered by the company when you consider the
attractiveness of compensation. In addition to compensation, discover whether
employees receive training or mentoring, how many hours a week the employees
tend to work, and how long employees tend to stay at the company. Finally, you
might check to see if any complaints have been filed against the company.
you need to connect with the person responsible for the interview, it is helpful
to discover as much as you can about that person as well. Is this your
prospective boss or someone screening applicants? If possible, discover what the
person is interested in and where he or she previously worked or went to
college. Gather information that will help you establish an easy rapport.
Your quest for information can seem elusive without the ability to conduct an
audit of the company's financial statements or at least interview employees of
the company. With a bit of networking, the latter might be more feasible than
you would initially think. Several other resources will help you:
The company website
- Company statements and brochures
- Newspaper and magazine articles
- Reviews of best and worst companies
- Employees of the company
- Public records
- Information held at local job search agencies