How to impress at your first job interview

Preparing for your first job interview can feel both exciting and daunting.

But before you even start applying for positions make sure you have a first-class CV.

It’s what your potential new employer will use to decide whether to offer you an interview so it needs to showcase all of your talents while telling tell them exactly why you are the best person for the role.

Businesses and organisations will most likely make a decision on whether to offer you an interview based purely on what they see on your CV.

You want it to not just help you stand out and be memorable, but also provide all of the information the person reading it needs to know.

Firstly, make sure to include your contact details at the top but do not include your age or a photograph unless specifically asked to do so.

You want the layout to be clear and concise because too much information can be hard to take in so try to keep to no more than two pages.

It needs to include your education and achievements and employment history, such as any part-time jobs as well as any work or volunteer experience, making sure to include details of your roles and responsibilities.

Mention any personal, technical or specialist skills you have – you could provide examples of how you’ve used them to show you are motivated and ready for work.

These could include organisation, communication and interpersonal skills.

Also, you can add a few lines about hobbies or personal projects that may be relevant to the job you are applying for and include details of two referees. 

These could be tutors or someone who managed you at your part-time job or during work experience.

When you are finished make sure to check spelling and grammar. 

Read it through more than once and ask someone else to take a look too – they might spot something you haven’t noticed.

Hopefully your CV will impress and you will be offered an interview.

You’ve probably heard your parents talk about the importance of making a good first impression.

And one of the best ways to help yourself feel more confident and in control is to be prepared. 

Research everything you can about the company and what the role you have applied for entails.

This may be something you’ve done already before submitting your application but it’s worth spending more time on this as you will be able to show at the interview that you fully understand what will be expected of you.

Arrive in plenty of time on the day of the interview – do a trial run if you are unsure how long it will take you to reach the venue.

Always dress smartly – remember you will be seen before you are heard so make sure the way you are dressed is businesslike.

Take a moment to relax before entering the premises or interview room and then offer a firm handshake.

Don’t forget it’s only one interview, there will always be other opportunities if you miss out.

When answering questions be confident in your skills and abilities when you are talking and make eye contact.

If you do find yourself getting flustered, take a moment to gather your thoughts before continuing, they will expect you to be nervous.

Finally, try to end the interview on a positive note – this could be quickly summing up why you would be a valuable addition to the team.


Learn about the job – The more you know about the role, the easier it will be to answer questions about why you would be a good fit for it .

Research the company – the interviewer will expect you to know about their firm so make sure you find out as much as you can about them .

Practice interviewing – get a family member or friend to ask you some questions so you can practice your answers .

Dress appropriately – you want to impress them so make sure you are smart and tidy . Business wear is always a good option