What Do Interviewers Really Want to Know?

By Randy Wooden, Director, Professional Center by Goodwill Industries of Northwest North Carolina

Hiring personnel – whether human resources or manager – want to know who is the best candidate for their opening. How do they make their final selection, especially when there are a number of qualified candidates?

They are trying to see whether you can perform the job well and if you will fit in their workplace. The company is looking for hard (or technical) skills or competencies and soft skills that support your complementing their culture.

Hard or Technical Skills or Competencies are often communicated in the job description and qualifications. Hard skills are functions or processes you have performed in past work. Be sure those key words (with examples of relevant work) are included on your resume and speak more about them during an interview.

Soft Skills or Employment Competencies are capabilities like problem solving, communication skills, working within a team, etcetera, that indicate you could complement the company culture and team. Be prepared to offer examples of how you have demonstrated these in the past. Remember to ask good questions and let them know you are interested in the job.

Demonstrating your skills and competencies should go a long way to making you a top candidate.