Monthly Archives: May 2021

The Interview

The Interview

You’ve been applying for positions, and finally that call comes that you have been waiting for. You are invited to attend an interview – now what?

We will cover this over the next few weeks, assisting you with preparation through to the follow-up.

Before the Interview:

The first step is to research the company, make sure you know where they are situated and that they are legitimate. Then go onto their website or social media platforms and learn about the company’s mission, goals, their culture and their management structure. Organisations look to hire people with similar values and being able to discuss these points will impress the interviewer.

Then go back to the job advert and read through the description, this will prepare you for any questions they might ask. Also take the time to review your CV, make sure you know off-hand the information in your CV.

One of the most important points is to prepare potential questions you may be asked and how you will answer these. Align your answers with the details in your CV and their job description, but also always be honest. To be better prepared, you can ask a family member or friend to mock interview you, using these questions.


Potential questions and how to reply:

  • Tell me about yourself:

An interviewer’s favourite opening question, but this is to get to know you and to break the ice. So maybe start with something personal and interesting, as an example – if your research revealed that they are a company that cares about the environment, tell them about your recycling habits. Volunteer work, charity initiatives and community upliftment is always a good conversation starter. Also personal achievements – running the comrades, local boxing champion, selling a personal painting, or similar. You can then ease into personal traits that also relate to business – I consider myself to be friendly, dependable, hard-working, positive, etc.


  • What are your strengths:

Here’s your chance to elaborate on the qualities that make you a good employee, so discuss attributes that will best qualify you for the specific job and set you apart from the other candidates. On your list you can include your education, soft skills, hard skills or past work experiences. Keep your list to five or six particularly strong skills and next to each skill, write an example of how you applied that strength.
An example:
I pride myself on my customer service skills, with five years’ experience as a customer service agent I have learned to understand and resolve customer issues effectively. I also have strong communication skills, which help me to work well with customers, team members and management.

Potential Q&A’s will continue in our next article.

Stay safe!

Applying for a Job

Applying for a Job

Your CV is polished and your Cover Letter is professional, now you want to start looking for suitable positions.

There are many options to consider – you can browse through:

  1. Social Media

LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter are very popular platforms for networking, they provide an interactive and responsive avenue when job hunting. A word of warning though, be watchful of what you place on these sites.

For example, if you see a job on Facebook that you like – read the advert very carefully. If it asks you to follow a link, apply online or email the advertiser directly, do not comment with your cellphone number or say ‘interested’, this will create a bad impression and you will not be considered.

Potential employers also use social media to vet their candidates, so please ensure that your footprint is clean. Rather remove profanities, inappropriate pictures, political or topical rants that could be viewed as offensive.

Use your real name, avoid cute nicknames or ‘cool’ identities.

When it comes to LinkedIn, set up a profile that is professional and closely linked to your CV. Set up specific key words on your profile that accurately suit the type of position that you are looking for.


  1. Job Portals

Job portals expose you to a vast variety of positions within South Africa and abroad with the option of searching through hundreds of new positions. You can register your CV online, which may be viewed by any number of employers and recruiters, thus increasing your chances of getting noticed.


  1. Recruitment Agents

There are many reputable recruitment agencies in South Africa that are hired by employers to advertise vacancies and vet incoming applicants. It is advisable to register your CV with a recruitment agent in the event that they receive a position that matches your skill set. You can also browse through their available jobs on their websites and Facebook sites.


  1. Newspapers

Job classified sections of the paper can be viewed locally in the newspaper, or nationally online. The advantage of your local news print is that the employer focuses on a specific geographic audience and is usually looking to hire locally.


  1. Networking

Chat to your friends, family, social groups, church members, etc. and let them know that you are available. Word of mouth job referrals are possibly one of the most successful ways employers fill their job vacancies.


  1. Market your CV

Is there a company or specific industry that you have always wanted to work for?

Visit their corporate website or Facebook page to see if there are any openings, or try contacting their HR department to enquire about any opportunities. If there are no jobs, politely ask if you may send your CV for future reference. Be sure to have researched information regarding the company and what value you can offer the organisation.


There are a lot of new positions posted daily on these platforms, so job hunting can become a bit daunting. Perhaps refine your search criteria using keywords.

Don’t make the mistake of applying for everything you think you may like – this will become tedious and soul destroying.

When you find the right position and you are ready to send off your CV and cover letter, or an online CV – please read through the requirements to ensure that you match with most of them. Then check the application instructions – don’t send through unnecessary documents and qualifications if it is not asked for. This may get you eliminated from the short-listing process as it will just annoy the recruiter, and it indicates that you do not follow instructions.


A very important point to remember when applying for a job is to use a reference – either the job title or the specific reference in the advert that has been indicated by the recruiter. Please do not just send your application or CV without any indication of why you are applying. Many agents advertise more than one position and they do not have time to determine which job you are applying for, this will get you disqualified immediately.


We wish you success.


Stay safe.