Applying for an Internal Vacancy: The Interview

Internal interviews are not like any other interviews. They are actually harder and more difficult because you have to prove yourself to those whom you think know you already. In fact, they do not know you as well as you would like to think. Just because you have worked in a company for a number of years, it does not mean that your seniors know everything about your strengths and weaknesses particularly regarding the fit to the proposed job. Hence, when you appear for that interview many times the interviewers will seek to be assured that you really match the position and not make a mistake based on their perceptions of you due to their pre-knowing you.

The fact that you are known here goes actually against you in a way. Hence, you should very carefully prepare for the internal interview and aim to wipe out any doubt whatsoever from the minds of your senior colleagues about your fit in the new position. In order to do that you should keep in mind the five most common mistakes committed by internal candidates, most of them based of the assumption that they already know all about it:

You do not research sufficiently: Most of the times internal candidates assume they know all about the department or position offered. In effect they have superficial knowledge acquired from sharing with colleagues and through the grape vine. When internal interviews takes place, the interviews will want to establish that you understood what the change involved and hence will need to know how much you know about the work of the department and the position offered. When it is found that the candidate does not have in-depth knowledge, he/she are rejected.

You do not prepare for the interview: The internal candidates usually think they are too well known to be really interviewed for the position and hence do not really prepare for the interview. This is a big mistake. The internal people actually need to be convinced that the past experience of the internal candidate will actually complement the need of the future job and it is not just seen as a promotion ladder. Lack of preparation on the part of the candidate will indicate will indicate shallowness.

You do not plan well for the interview: It is important to make an impact in internal interviews, so as not to come across as over-confident. You need to keep in mind that you will be competing with persons who have thoroughly prepared for this interview. You lack of preparation for the interview will be seen as taking-for-granted that the job is yours which will actually kill your chances for the landing the job.

You do not ask questions: Interviewers during an internal interviews gauge your interest in the job through the questions you put them. Many candidates come unprepared to ask questions and loose this golden chance to prove their fit. The questions you need to ask should show your interest towards the work and goal of the department and your role in the team. Questions are an important tool for the candidate who needs to use them to their advantage.

You do not follow-up: Many candidates forget the follow-up letter ' more so in internal interviews when they feel that it is not necessary due to the familiarity with the interviewers. However, a follow-up letter always acts like the icing on the cake. The internal candidate through this letter gets a last chance not only to show their interest in the job, but also convince the interviewers of their fit and value addition to the new job.