The Biggest Interview Mistakes Entry-Level Candidates Make

The Biggest Interview Mistakes Entry-Level Candidates Make

According to, you have between a 1% to 3% chance of receiving an interview after applying online for an open position.  Because the chances of receiving a call back are so low for entry-level candidates, it is essential to extensively prepare when the right interview comes up.

Take a look at the biggest mistakes entry-level candidates make in interviews:

  • Relying on school achievements to get you the job.

Sports, extracurricular activities, leadership opportunities, and clubs are a great thing to mention on a resume. Although, during the interview focus on the real world experience you have gained while during or after school (such as internships, jobs, large projects for companies).

  • Not preparing properly. 

Just looking at a company’s website does not suffice anymore in this technology-centric world. Take a look at the company’s social media pages, reviews on review sites, articles about the company, their competition, company history, and more. (Depending upon the position you are interviewing for.)

Tip from our recruiter: Compare your experiences with the job description and be prepared to explain that in the interview.

LinkedIn is a great source of information on companies. Not only can you see company information, but you are also able to see company employees. Take a look to see if the interviewer of the company is on LinkedIn. You may be able to find connections or talking points in your interview. (TIP: If you want your profile to be private when looking at someone else’s profile,click here.) Finally, you should always come prepared with questions. These questions should be based off of the job description, company information, or the interviewer’s personal background.

  • Stretch the truth on your resume or during the interview.

According to 70%, of college students would falsify qualification on a resume to get the job they want.  Lying on a resume or during a job interview can automatically disqualify you for the job position. If you lie during the interview and you receive the job position, it can place you at a huge disadvantage when preforming the job requirements.

  • Not being unique while answering generic interview questions.

The hiring manager just interviewed 5 other people stating the same cliché answers that you are giving them. State answers that will separate you from the rest of the interviewing candidates, fitting for the job position, and true to you.

  • Salary expectations.

Asking about salary too early on in the interview process or out-pricing yourself when interviewing. Remember if you are just coming out of school, your experience is limited. Hiring managers are rarely going to place entry-level candidates in a $50,000 job position in most fields. Experience outweighs money if you’re looking for job progression.

  • Not sending a thank-you note within 24 hours after the interview.

Thank-you notes are one of the most important parts of the interview process. This can make or break whether or not you receive an offer.  Thank-you notes are a great way to show appreciation for the company and the interviewer’s time. It is also a final reminder of how you would impact the company if you received an offer from them.

Want more information about thank-you notes? Click here for our tips on how to write thank-you notes.

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