The process of temporary recruitment has changed drastically over the years. The days when a client called with a requirement, and we had temps ready and waiting in reception for a role that day, are all but gone. These days temporary recruitment processes are almost run as stringently as a permanent process, with organisations placing a greater emphasis on finding people who are a fit for their organisation, even if they won’t be there permanently. But what does this mean for a candidate who is attending an interview for a temporary position? Well, it means you need to be prepared.
We all know that preparing for an interview is key, but sometimes we might need to be reminded of just how important it really is. Having a great CV will get you in the door but you need to impress in the interview in order to get the job. Here are a few things to think about when interviewing for a temp role:
- Make sure you have read a job description if you have one and have a good understanding about what the job entails. Think about examples from your own work history that relate to the requirements of this job. This is especially important in temp roles as the employer will need you to hit the ground running quickly, so showing your experience will greatly aid you in getting the job.
- Think about your strengths. Make sure you can easily provide at least three strengths and how you can demonstrate that in your work life. With temp roles, you’ll want to highlight things like adaptability, flexibility, and independence, and find examples from your experience that highlight that. You may also want to think about an area of your skillset that needs developing, as the interviewer will often ask you about your weaknesses in addition to your strengths.
- If you’ve temped before, outline the ways in which you were successful. Talk about the ways in which you approach the challenges of adjusting to a new job environment quickly, and how you overcame them.
- Make sure you are able to convey your key achievements, and make it clear what your specific role was in achieving them. For temp roles, being able to make decisions yourself is key. If your achievements involve you taking charge of a situation, perhaps in an environment where there were no clear procedures in place, then this is a great aspect to highlight.
- Think about why you want to work for the company and what appeals about the role. Even in temporary roles, the hiring manager wants to see that you really want this job in particular, not just any job. Culture fit is becoming increasingly important in temp roles, as employers are now prioritising fit across all hires.
There are also a few key things that you should do to prepare for all interviews, whether it’s for a permanent or temp job, or whether they are likely to be more formal or informal in nature:
- Make sure you know the names and positions of the people you are meeting and look them up on LinkedIn, see what information you can find.
- Do your research. Look up the company website. What do they do? What is topical for the business right now? What is the structure? Any key points of interest?
- It might sound simple, but make sure you know where you are going. It is so important not to show up late and not too early either.
- Make eye contact and a good sturdy handshake goes a long way.
- Dress appropriately for the interview you are attending.
- Make sure you know what is in your CV.
- Have a think about some questions you would like to ask. It is important to show your interest by asking some questions when given the opportunity.
There is no hard and fast rule when it comes to an interview process for a temporary role. Sometimes our clients only interview one candidate and offer the role to them on the spot, while others will interview at least three candidates and decide on the most suitable applicant. Whatever the case, you will be sure to impress if you are suitably prepared.
Looking for more advice? Feel free to get in touch or browse through the rest of our job search blogs.