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How to prepare for a job interview in SA

How to prepare for a job interview in SA

Almost everything about the job seeking process can be stressful, but nothing quite gets people sweating than sitting for an interview.

The interview process is typically one of the middle to latter steps of getting a new job, and can be fundamental in the success of any application.

Your CV checks out, and the company is interested in finding out more about you – and possibly putting you on the spot to test how you handle certain situations. This can really take it out of you.

BusinessTech spoke to a recruitment expert to get some tips on how to be better equipped to handle an interview – and it boils down to three P’s: Prepare, Plan and Practice.


The first step is to prepare – which includes finding out as much as you can about the company interviewing you, so you can better come across as informed, and interested in the position.

  • Research information about the company – know what they do.
  • Research possible or typical/most-used interview questions.
  • Make sure you know what the job entails, if you are working through an agency, get as much detail as possible from them.
  • Find out the company’s expectations (a good recruiter should know this), and company culture.
  • Interview details such as who will do the interview (names & positions); whether it is a panel interview; whether assessments/tests will be done; how long the interview will be.
  • Prepare for both basic questions and scenario-based questions
  • Prepare examples of work-related achievements suitable to the position


The next stage is planning. You should organize your day so that you can on time for the interview (while still being respectful of your current employment situation) – and how you will come across at the interview.

  • Plan your day at your current employer to allow enough time to attend the interview and assessments.
  • Plan the route you will travel, include alternative routes if needed.
  • Plan what you will be wearing and ensure it is clean and appropriate.
  • Plan the type of Questions you would like to ask in the interview…leave out the salary question until they ask you!


Finally, once you’ve planned everything else, you should practice – it may seem silly, but sometimes saying things out loud to yourself or to friends or family will help you put your best self forward.

  • Role-play with a friend or family member to ensure you make an impression within a short period of time.
  • Practice on ways to motivate/ persuade the interviewer that you are the best fit for the company both in experience and personality.

More on job tips

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Top 10 most common interview blunders

South Africa’s best and worst paying jobs – and the gap in between

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BusinessTech's Staff Writer is directly plugged into the South African Internet backbone, and spits out press releases and other news as they receive it. They are believed to be cl...
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  • Melchizedek

    can we talk about the recruitment agency before doing even one interview!!

    • CypherGate

      Most recruitment agencies are just pure bad. I went to a few for interviews and got to know them better (or so I thought) and they LITERALLY don’t call u back with regards to any positions. They don’t bother checking on u even when they have jobs advertised. What I’ve come to notice is that they usually try and get jobs for the big earners cause their commission is far better than the average joe or the ones that aren’t quite there yet. Its pathetic really.

      • My_opinion247

        Employment agencies are generally useless.

        • CypherGate

          True. The part that sucks a lot is that some companies insist in going through agencies so u need to apply through an agency instead of directly to the company itself. Annoys me.

          • My_opinion247

            And agencies will only present their own candidates

          • CypherGate


          • My_opinion247

            Been there. Got the t-shirt

        • Melchizedek

          just gave up applying for job, using them

  • Gareth David

    And here I thought the first thing would to change your name to something which resembles a name from the majority in South Africa. That and getting your legal ethnicity changed.

    At least least then you’ll be considered for way more interviews as it will look good for the company’s BEE rating.

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