Preparing for job interviews as a PhD researcher

As a PhD researcher or graduate, you’ll have spent years honing your research skills and becoming an expert in your field. However, when it comes to job interviews, many PhDers may find themselves at a loss. This is  why it’s so important to prepare for job interviews, whether in industry, with a non for profit or at a university.

Here are some of the benefits of preparing for job interviews as a PhD researcher or graduate:

  1. Increased confidence: Preparing for job interviews can help boost your confidence and reduce anxiety. By practicing your responses to common interview questions, you’ll feel more comfortable and self-assured during the interview itself.
  2. Better communication: As a PhD researcher, you’re likely used to communicating complex ideas to a small group of experts. However, in a job interview, you’ll need to convey your qualifications and experience in a clear and concise manner often to a non-specialist audience. Preparing for interviews can help you hone your communication skills and ensure that your message is understood.
  3. Enhanced storytelling: Interviews are an opportunity to tell your story and showcase your experiences, skills, and achievements. By preparing in advance, you’ll be able to craft compelling and relevant anecdotes that demonstrate your value to the employer.
  4. Greater flexibility: Preparing for job interviews can help you become more flexible and adaptable. By anticipating different types of questions and scenarios, you’ll be better prepared to handle unexpected questions during the interview.
  5. Better matching: Preparing for job interviews can help you identify the types of positions and organisations that align with your skills, interests, and values. This can help you make more informed decisions about your career path.

By taking the time to reflect on your experiences and skills, practice your interviewing techniques, and anticipate different types of questions and scenarios, you’ll be better equipped to showcase your qualifications and make a strong impression on potential employers.

Interview question banks:

A great way to get interview ready is to run through interview questions in advance and here are some helpful resources:

Academic interviews:

Industry interviews:

*This blog post was prepared by Careers and Employability Consultant, Kathryn Mountford