FirstInterviewWithRecruiterRecruitment agencies act as a liaison between employers and job candidates. It’s their job to identify and hire knowledgeable and experienced individuals to fill a position. One of the first steps of the recruitment process involves an initial interview where a recruiter learns more about a candidate to determine if they are a good fit for a job. If this is your first time interviewing with a recruiter, here’s how to prepare.

Gather Documents

Before coming to an interview, you will need some basic documents so a recruiter can go over your credentials. This typically includes your resume, past employer references, copies of relevant certifications and educational documentation. You may also want to include a cover letter and portfolio, and it’s smart to take multiple copies of each document.

Whether you’re applying for a job in manufacturing, the administrative industry or any other field, you’ll want all of this information at your disposal. Generally speaking, it’s best if your resume covers at least the past 10 years of your work history, and there are no major gaps between jobs. If there are gaps, you should explain the circumstances.

Know What Type of Work You’re Seeking

There are several types of employment such as part time, full time, seasonal and temporary. Accordingly, you should know precisely what you’re looking for and what your level of flexibility is. Maybe you’re just looking for a part-time job to earn some extra money. Maybe you’re looking for a full-time position that you hope to make a long-term career out of.

Whatever the case may be, you should know beforehand what your expectations are and if you’re willing to take a position that doesn’t match exactly what you’re looking for. This will save both you and the recruiter time, and increase your odds of finding the right position.

Rehearse Answers to Potential Questions

Regardless of the position you’re looking for, there are two main types of questions that a recruiter will usually ask. The first will involve your previous experience and what qualifications you have that will make you the right person for the job. The second will deal with the type of organization where your skill set is best suited.

You should be prepared to thoroughly explain your background and the unique talents that you bring to the table. Also, you will need to explain how your talents will fit with the type of job you’re applying for. Here are some examples of commonly asked questions:

  • Why did you apply for this particular position?
  • Why are you the best choice for this role? What separates you from other candidates?
  • Why do you want this job?
  • What did you like most about [a job on your resume]? What did you like least about this job?


Preparation is key to a successful first interview. By educating yourself ahead of time, you can increase your chances of impressing your recruiter and landing the job. To make sure you’re prepared, you should:

  • Obtain all necessary documents
  • Have a clear idea of your expectations
  • Familiarize yourself with typical interview questions

To learn more job search tips, check out our career advice.

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