9 Effective Strategies for Researching a Company Before An Interview
To help you prepare for your next job interview, we’ve gathered nine effective strategies and resources for researching a company from top professionals, including CEOs, founders, and HR experts. From connecting with current employees to exploring industry forums and communities, these insights will ensure you’re well-informed and ready to impress your potential employer.
- Connect with Current Employees
- Find CEO Interviews
- Research the Interviewers
- Read Informational Interviews and Patents
- Analyze Press Releases
- Use Blind for Unfiltered Insights
- Utilize Online Presence and Resources
- Conduct News Searches for Updates
- Explore Industry Forums and Communities
Connect with Current Employees
In addition to researching publicly available information like their website and Glassdoor, it’s beneficial for you to reach out directly to current employees in order to gain more personalized insights into what working at this particular organization entails. You can inquire with your contacts on LinkedIn who might be connected with someone there or ask around in your own social circles if anyone knows anyone at the company.
Keeping open communication with actual employees will give you a better understanding of day-to-day operations, team dynamics, and personnel hierarchy, which are all things that will be useful during an interview setting.
Find CEO Interviews
One effective strategy for researching a company prior to an interview is to delve into the interview with the CEO. By conducting a Google search using the company name along with “interview with the CEO,” you can gain valuable insights.
Reading this interview provides a deeper understanding of the company’s vision, mission, and values. It equips you to confidently address questions about the company and craft thoughtful responses.
Furthermore, it allows you to assess whether the company aligns with your own values and goals, helping you determine if it’s the right fit for you. Remember, being well-informed about the company enhances your chances of making a strong impression during the interview.
Research the Interviewers
One of the biggest traps that job seekers fall into is mistaking a company’s PR for its reality. I learned this lesson the hard way when I was interviewing for a job at LinkedIn Learning.
Like most job seekers, I spent hours reading through all the latest articles that had been published and preparing questions. What I realized when I went into the interview is that what I had been reading were only the good things about the company.
The truth is every company has its problems. And, the reason they’re looking to hire is usually because they’re looking for someone to solve those problems. So my advice to job seekers: don’t research the company, research the people.
Look up each of the people you’ll be interviewing and think of five questions for each. Make sure to ask about what problems they’re trying to solve. And, of course, come prepared with solutions. This will move you ahead of 99% of other candidates.
Read Informational Interviews and Patents
An effective strategy for researching a company prior to an interview is pursuing an informational interview. This tactic entails arranging a meeting with someone who works at the organization and aims to gain insight into the overall work environment and specifics like department plans, job prospects, or office culture.
An uncommon but similarly useful method for gaining knowledge is reading over the company’s patents. Such documents often indicate innovativeness by detailing their products and services in detail, providing important clues about how they operate that could help when answering questions during the actual job interview.
Analyze Press Releases
While some companies will post press releases directly on their website, a good number will only paraphrase the information. But these press releases are typically printed in industry newsletters in full and can contain specifics that reveal a good deal about where a company hopes to go in the future.
Reading these carefully allows a deeper understanding of the company’s goals and mission. Between the lines are often hints about how they plan to approach future concepts and projects.
Candidates should pore over them prior to an interview, and then work what they’ve learned into their answers. While others are focusing on a company’s current standing, you’ll look like someone invested in its longevity.
Use Blind for Unfiltered Insights
When it comes to getting the real scoop on a company before an interview, my go-to place is Blind. If you haven’t heard of it, it’s this anonymous platform where folks spill the beans about their companies. No corporate polish or PR spins, just real, raw insights from people on the inside.
You can learn a lot from the posts there—the good, the bad, and the ugly. You’ll get an unfiltered view of what the culture’s like, how the management works, or what the pay scale tends to be. So, before you walk into that interview, it’s worth spending some time on Blind. It’s like getting insider info without having to make a single awkward call.
Utilize Online Presence and Resources
One effective strategy for researching a company is to utilize its online presence and resources. The company’s official website serves as a valuable source of information, providing insights into its mission, values, products or services, and organizational structure. By exploring the website, potential candidates can gain a comprehensive understanding of the company’s background, history, and current initiatives.
Additionally, reviewing the company’s press releases, blog posts, and social media accounts can offer valuable insights into recent news, updates, and industry trends. Another valuable resource is online professional networking platforms such as LinkedIn.
By utilizing these strategies and resources, candidates can gather valuable information to better prepare for their interview and demonstrate their genuine interest in the company.
Conduct News Searches for Updates
One valuable strategy to gain an extra advantage in your interview preparation is to conduct a news search for the company. By searching for recent news articles or press releases related to the company, you can stay updated on its latest initiatives, projects, partnerships, or industry involvement.
Start by using search engines to find news articles specifically about the company or any recent developments they have been involved in. Look for notable achievements, new product launches, expansion plans, community initiatives, or any industry recognition they have received.
This information will provide you with valuable talking points during the interview and demonstrate that you have taken the time to stay informed about the company’s current activities. It showcases your genuine interest and enthusiasm while allowing you to discuss how your skills and experiences align with recent endeavors.
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Explore Industry Forums and Communities
When it comes to researching a company before an interview, one effective strategy is to explore online forums and communities related to the industry. These platforms provide invaluable insights into the company’s reputation, work culture, and employee experiences, allowing you to gather insider perspectives beyond what official sources offer.
For example, a recent study conducted by Glassdoor revealed that 70% of job seekers look for online forums and communities to research potential employers. These platforms offer authentic discussions and firsthand accounts that help candidates gauge a company’s values and identify any red flags.
By actively engaging in these communities, you can ask questions, seek advice, and connect with current or former employees. This real-life example highlights the power of unconventional research methods in gaining a deeper understanding and making informed decisions when preparing for an interview.
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