Entry level interviews

At entry level, everything looks difficult, or potentially difficult, particularly interviews. Not the case. The real issue is practical, not theoretical. Entry level jobs are about getting the right people, just like other interviews.

The only real difference is you have to deal with proving your capabilities in another way, and the pitch to the interviewers has to be different.

A few basic points:

Do not underestimate the level of difficulty in any entry level interview. It's not that easy to get good entry level jobs, because they're highly competitive, and you're dealing with professional criteria.

You have to convince professionals in your field you're the right person. That's not easy either, and you'll find that they know their people as well as they know their work. In any profession, people know who's a good new starter and who isn't, usually from a lot of prior experience.

You need to be well organized for your interview. Nobody's expecting Einstein, but the more competently you present your information, the better. It's a great relief for any employer to know a new entry level position is being given to someone who has the act together.

Don't get casual or lazy about answers to questions. It looks like you're not trying, or not taking the interview seriously, and that is universally fatal. Develop a bit of healthy paranoia about this facet of the interview.

Stick to the point, and make sure you answer a question effectively. Babble doesn't help. Stay on topic, always. Don't distract yourself in the middle of an answer, and don't add to answers unless you're adding value to them.

The main difference between entry level applicants is presentation and quality of information. Most have pretty much the same level of qualifications and other credentials. The sad fact is that some good people tend to sabotage their own interviews simply by getting messy in their responses. The job goes to a lesser applicant, simply because the lesser applicant keeps their feet out of their mouth.