When it comes to hiring practices, a survey of more than 500 HR professionals from across the country found some surprising statistics:

  • Eighty-three percent of respondents said that post-interview thank-you notes are obsolete and they would not disqualify a candidate who didn’t send one.
  • Eighty-two percent of prospective employers believe that visible tattoos are acceptable.
  • Fifty-three percent of respondents said they’d hire a candidate who was late to the interview or who had to reschedule.

What? This data seems to go against everything we’ve been taught about the interview and hiring process. But some more of the stats are a little more expected:

  • Ninety percent of employers would disqualify a candidate who even touched their phones during the interview. Attention job candidates: Turn off your device and put it away.
  • Eighty-one percent of respondents agree that badmouthing a previous employer or employers is bad news.

It’s obvious that what’s expected in job interviews is changing with the times. In this issue of Promotional Consultant Today, we share three tips for candidates who want to ace the interview from business writer Wanda Marie Thibodeaux.

1. Do your research. Yes, you should have basic information about the company and their values in your head. But you should also know who you’ll be interviewing with. Make it personal and truly seek to connect with that person. Thibodeaux says, “Look up their LinkedIn profiles. Know what roles they’ve held and start to brainstorm how you could potentially work together. If you aren’t provided with an [interviewer name] list, ask for one. Come prepared with thoughtful, relevant questions that will give you a better idea of what the role will entail.”

2. Practice. Practicing for the interview by using the research you’ve conducted develops the confidence you need to set aside interview jitters. Do some mock interviews with your friends or family members to get your talking points in line, and dress the part regardless of the role you’re trying to land.

3. Know who you are. “It’s important to take a candid look at your strengths and weaknesses prior to any interview,” says Thibodeaux. “You should know your story—what major contributions you’ve made in past roles, challenges you’ve had to overcome, and most importantly, your results. Being able to articulate these key attributes and align them to your potential employer’s organization will give you a big leg up amongst the competition.”

Put these three key tips to work in your next job interview, and check back with PCT tomorrow for more smart advice about business.

Source: Wanda Marie Thibodeaux is a freelance copy and ghostwriter based in Minnesota. A graduate of Central Michigan University and sole proprietor of Takingdictation.com, Thibodeaux focuses her business content on innovation, entrepreneurship and management. She has an interest in the scientific and psychological underpinnings of business operations. She has written blogs, website and marketing content, e-books, web articles, and product descriptions. When not writing, she teaches private music lessons and lives with her husband and two children.