While you can impress your employer with an outstanding resume, that isn’t always enough to make an impression last. You might need to ace your interview to win over the employer and finally get the job.

Here are ways you can go the extra mile and stand out in an interview:

Before the Interview

1. Do your Research

The time you spend reading about the company is worth more than anything else you’d do in your entire career. It demonstrates your interest and enthusiasm for the role and the organization. It also signals your excitement about contributing to the company’s long-term goals. Once you know your part and the organization, it’s easy to slip right into a conversation.

A few tips for doing your research:
Look into their social media handles.
Refer through all their company resources.
Read their blogs.
Do a quick search on google to find the latest news about the company.

2. Prepare the Right Questions

Of course, you might have a zillion things to ask. No matter how much you read, you can never know about the company in and out. So this is your chance to prepare the right questions to ask. It could be anything from specific projects or initiatives to their social media handles, the culture, and benefits, or anything beyond what you read.

Most importantly, asking the right questions will also help you make a decision. After all, it isn’t just them who is interviewing you—you are also interviewing the company.

During the Interview

3. Build a Rapport

With all that research and preparation, opening up is difficult if there isn’t a good rapport. Be comfortable and conversational. Avoid ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answers. Give examples, describe your experience in detail, and maintain eye contact. It’s essential to have good body language during interviews.

Remember that a recruiter is looking for clarity; they need answers which show your interest and strengths that stand out from the others. They don’t just want to know about your expertise but also how well you fit in culturally.

4. Reiterate your Interest

It’s fair to talk about your past experiences, but how will you prove that you are a potential asset to the company? Come up with a 30-60-90 day plan, or give insights into how different they can do what they’re already doing to ace their business. Describe your plan on how well you can execute the role and how it aligns with your strengths. Study the job description well and understand your employer’s expectations from you so that you can demonstrate a growth mindset.

After the Interview

5. Send a thank you note

It’s essential to leave a tangible takeaway. Thank your employer for their time and patience. Show them how excited you are about the prospect of working with them. Only 25% of candidates leave a thank you note, so you must set yourself apart and be detail oriented. It would add more value if you could reiterate your interest in the position and why you would choose your employer over others.

6. Follow up properly

Deal with a take-home assignment diligently. It’s always best to turn it in one day ahead. Don’t forget to follow up on something you said you’d answer after the interview. Although it may seem like they might forget about it, it’s essential to show up and give it the attention it deserves. It not only puts you in the spotlight but also reminds them of your interest.

Additionally, remember the hiring timeline and mark the dates on your calendar so that you have a clear picture of when you should have a response. If HR said, they would need a week to call you back, wait for an additional 2-3 days before you follow up on the next steps. There could be several reasons for delays, like last-minute budget restrictions, negotiations, and timeline shifts.

Make sure your follow-up email is short and crisp; if it’s taking you more than 30 seconds to read, it’s probably too long.

As one final step, practice your questions and mind your body language. You could also run a mock interview with a friend or a family member because that would help you be thorough and confident. The bottom line is, stay hopeful you’ve got this!