How to Prepare for an Interview

Opportunities

How to Prepare for an Interview

​We’re excited that we’ve got the chance to interview you for a position at Vale. We want you to shine. To best prepare yourself, read the information below, and then come and wow us. 

Preparing for behavioural interviews

A female Vale employee hard at work in the mineMany companies, including Vale, use behavioural interviews to allow you to demonstrate that you’re right for the role you are interviewing for. Being prepared for a behavioural interview can give you a clear advantage over your competition. 
 

What is behavioural interviewing? 

It is a form of interviewing that focuses on the past school- and work-related performance of candidates. The interview process is designed to allow candidates to show how they have demonstrated specific competencies in past experience.

 

So what is the difference between regular interviews and behavioural interviews?

Perhaps the essential difference is that behavioural interviewers ask competency-related questions that focus on past examples of demonstrated ability rather than asking hypothetical questions. In short, they ask, “When did you demonstrate...” rather than “What would you do if...” The premise is that the best predictor of future work performance is successful past performance in similar situations.

 

Why are companies using behavioural interviewing? 

There are several reasons that so many companies have chosen this method of interviewing: 

 
  • They can design specific behavioural questions to determine which candidates have the required competencies. They are interested in whether candidates have demonstrated these competencies in past work experience and how past performance relates to the requirements of the current position.
  • They can use reference checks to validate the specific situations, events and examples that candidates provide in the interview.
 

What can candidates do to prepare for a behavioural interview?

When candidates – internal or external – are going to participate in a behavioural interview, they should:

 
  • Review the job advertisement or posting to identify the behavioural competencies that are being examined by the interview panel. Candidates should look for key words; for example, “leadership,” “co-ordinate,” “work independently,” “teamwork” and “innovation.”
  • Reflect on their past and present work, school or co-curricular experience and recall situations or circumstances where they have demonstrated such things as “leadership” or “the ability to work independently,” as noted in the advertisement. Consider the need to:
    • Describe a specific situation
    • Outline their role or task in that situation
    • List the actions that they took
    • Describe the results of their actions
 

Other preparation tips

  • Bring several copies of your resume. Many companies, including Vale, use panel interviews where more than one interviewer may be present.
  • Be prepared to discuss your expectations of the company and come prepared with written questions that you need answered about the job, the company, benefits and compensation and the work group you would be working with.
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