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What should I bring to the interview?

ESS Candidate Newsletter – September, 2018

Columbus, OH September 01, 2018

In this month’s, ask the recruiter, we discuss what you should have prepared for an interview.

Introduction – Aaron Wandtke
Positions Filled in the Last 30 days
Ask the Recruiter What should I bring to the interview?


For years, job seekers have heard that employers “hire slow and fire fast.” We asked candidates to be patient with the hiring process, and reminded them that the job order process can take a few months from start to finish. This is no longer relevant advice as the new rising trend seems to be “hire fast and fire fast.”

Employers are starting to come around to this new trend. Moreover, our challenge now is to help candidates mentally prepare for this shift in the job order process. Years ago, you would start your job search and hope to have a new job in the next 3-6 months.  Today, you could have a new job in 3-6 weeks!

As recruiters, we share this as a word of caution. If you are considering getting into the job search market, we want to help you navigate this new trend. We do not want you to miss a GREAT opportunity simply because the job order process moved so quickly that you were not mentally prepared.

You can no longer dip your toe in the pool.  You have to commit to be in the job order process or just stay out.

Before entering the job market, be sure to speak with your family, select your references, contemplate a quick resignation process and consider potentially leaving a bonus behind for the right opportunity.

Ask the Recruiter – What should I bring to the interview?

What should you bring to your interview? Should you ever bring samples of your work or highlight awards received?

Definitely bring:

1. Resume – Too often, we assume everyone on the interview agenda has received and reviewed a resume.  Most interviewers glance at the resume minutes before the interview if at all.  We recommend having extra copies ready to hand out.

2. Prepared questions – One of the most common complaints is the applicant had no questions.  When asked why, candidates often tell us the prior person answered all their questions.  While this may be the case, we recommend preparing 3-5 questions for each interviewer.  It is also appropriate to ask the same questions to several people to hear a consistent answer across managers or departments.

3. Pad folio – By writing out your questions ahead of time, you can focus on the answer rather than thinking about your next question.

Use caution in bringing:

1. Samples of work – Be careful about bring samples of work, especially depending on the role.  Too often, people refer to their samples for every answer.  Even if your samples are excellent, it is good to remember that employers also want to get to know you and your personality.

2. Awards – Like samples of work, awards can overshadow other assets someone is bringing to the table. Use caution so you are not using your awards as a crutch. It is always appropriate to list awards on the resume and discuss as needed.

I want to help answer these questions and more. For expert guidance on fully preparing for your next interview, please give me a call.

I can be reached at 614-885-8490 or by e-mail at


Executive Staffing Solutions
445 Hutchinson Ave, Suite 650
Columbus, OH 43085