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Solutions in the Round -- Professional Development--Stay Calm and Ace That Interview
From the WUSS abstract for this topic
Interviewing is a necessity for obtaining a job, but it's an area of dread for many people. Collectively, SAS users at WUSS have thousands of interviews under their belt, but you individually may only have a handful so far. Come share your experiences and get tips on how to prepare for and handle the interview process. Solutions in the Round (SITR) is a roundtable format section where attendees discuss approaches and solutions to a programming problem or SAS topic. Users from different perspectives and all experience levels are encouraged to participate.
Discussion at WUSS
Common interview mistakes:
- Dress inappropriately – don’t wear perfume or cologne
- Late for interview
- Ill-prepared; not familiar with company interviewing with, etc.
- This is a major problem – if you are interviewing with a company you should know how they came to be
- Also, look into how the company is doing financially; well-funded?
- Startup companies must succeed within 1 – 2 years; if the company is not rising by then it may be a yellow flag
- Come out and say you don’t want to work a lot of hours, etc.
- A thorough interview can be extensive to ensure candidate possesses all of the skills that they claim to have
- Consider additional skills aside from SAS programming when going into an interview
- Base answers around what is appropriate for the job
- Show that you are able to think in a productive environment; don’t just list off everything that you know, answer the actual questions directly
- When you go on and on, it appears to a hiring manager that you don’t know the answer
- Industry can be taught – it’s harder to teach someone how to behave
- How can I be part of the solution? Don’t make the initial interview all about yourself
- Think about the client(potential employer) and how you can help them
- S.T.A.R. Technique
- Great approach for answering “character questions”
- Situation, task, action, result.
- Students – list internships and research projects; papers submitted can be listed even if they have not yet been presented
- Show that you have an understanding of the job and the challenges you will face
- Google is your friend: e.g. how to prepare for a phone interview, Skype interview (appearance and be mindful of what’s behind you!), panel interview
- Panel interviews can be intimidating (articles exist on this subject)
- Stay calm, do not get excited or angry
- Have some answers prepared for common questions such as:
- Why do you want to work here?
- Tell us one of your biggest failures
- Top 10 Interview Questions, e.g.:
- If a job calls you and you may not be completely interested in the position, take the interview and learn from it!
- You will be a bit more polished each time you do it
- When it comes to money, the first one to talk first always loses
- Email follow-up Thank You or rapid handwritten (within 3 days of interview) won’t hurt your chances or getting hired, provided the
- Thank You is well-written and has no grammatical errors
- This strategy is typically implemented after in-person interviews
- Go to local SAS Users Groups meetings; recruiters often attend and may be hiring
- Consider working with an agent
- Typically requires 3 – 8 years of experience
- There are SAS specialist recruiters!
- Staffing companies specialize in programming realms such as biostatistics
- Every single recruiter is on LinkedIn
- SAS directory of partners is a great way to identify SAS partners that may be hiring
Prepare now for the future…
Further Discussion -- Open to All
Please join the conversation! Also, if you were one of the live participants, please feel free to correct any mistakes or omissions from our original discussion.