Interview Research Checklist
To stand out from other applicants for the same position, you must know about the company and its products or services. Company information may be available through the Internet. The largest library in your area also has information available in binders, files, business periodicals, annual reports, etc. that will prove to be invaluable. Prior to an interview, be able to answer the following questions:
Is the company publicly or privately owned?
If it is privately held, who is the owner?
If it is a publicly owned company, can you obtain an annual report? (Ask a stock broker or call the receptionist at the company to ask for a copy.)
What are the products or services provided?
To what markets?
What were annual sales last year?
Who is the president/CEO?
Name three areas of high growth for the company:
Name the company's biggest challenges:
Have you obtained/read the company's mission statement?
Have you obtained/read the company's promotional literature and/or most recent press release? (Again, the receptionist can be helpful.)
Briefly paraphrase the company's philosophy:
Name three major competitors:
Paraphrase the company's competitive advantage:
Name and title of the person you are interviewing with:
What (if anything) have you learned about this person from networking contacts, professional organization contacts, etc.?
Is the open position new or a replacement?
Research prepares you to better answer and ASK questions during the interview. Each interview must be a two-way sharing of information. Based upon what you learn from your research, draft questions to ask in the areas of:
Reporting relationships, peers and subordinates
How and when the success of this position will be determined
Qualifications and experiences relevant to this position
The expected decision time frame for filling this position