Depending on your situation, leaping to change careers may bring a host of activities you may not have experienced for some time – one of these being an interview.
If you have been in your current role for several years, it is normal to feel out of practice with interview formalities. Remember, securing an interview for a position means your CV and cover letter has impressed, so you already have a foot in the door. To help you fully get through that door, we have compiled some top interview tips for a career changer.
1. Be prepared to explain your decision to change
Employers will want to know the reasoning behind your change in career. For them, they want to ensure that this is something you are not likely to do again in the near future.
It is essential to focus on the positives. Do not speak negatively about your current/previous role or employer as this will come off as unprofessional. Talk about what you are looking forward to gaining from the change, and express your excitement for the future.
2. Really sell your transferrable skills
When making a career change into a different industry, you may not have directly relevant technical skills for the role. However, this is not to say that your skills and experience from your previous roles are not valuable. Employers will look for soft-skills that are important within the position, so demonstrate any of relevance. At the end of the day, you can gain technical skills from training courses if necessary.
3. Demonstrate you are open to learning new things
Expanding on the previous point, you must show an employer you are willing to learn new skills and knowledge required for the role. Make sure you have an outline of a plan on how you can gain the necessary technical skills they are looking for. This may involve enrolment in online classes or undertaking research. Demonstrating your motivation to learn these things will impress an employer and show you are serious about the role.
4. Point out any benefits of your network
Your existing network may prove useful within your next role. Many sectors and fields overlap, so you may have some insider information or valuable contacts to make the most of. Demonstrating this in your interview will show employers that you already have a level of involvement within the industry that you can build and expand on.
5. Show openness to a different business culture
Different industries can have very different business cultures. This is something that you should be prepared for and know how to respond to in an interview. An employer will be looking for someone that can do the job, but also fit in well with the team and broader business.
To accompany these pointers, be sure to have a read of our confidence tips guide to further assist you with breezing through the application and interview process.