When preparing for a job interview, there are many tips and tricks to help you make a good impression. However, what is often overlooked is the importance of avoiding certain comments or phrases that can be detrimental to your chances of success. Here are some things not to say in interviews:

Here my tops five dont’s

1. “I don’t know” or “I’m not sure”

Interviewers expect you to have done research into the company and position so it’s important to come across as confident and knowledgeable. If you don’t know an answer, focus on what you do know rather than saying ‘I don’t know’.

2. “This isn’t my ideal role”

Interviewers want to know that you are interested in the job and will be a committed employee. If the role isn’t your ideal choice, talk about what attracted you to the role rather than focusing on what you don’t like.

3. Negative comments

Interviewers want to see enthusiasm for the role so avoid making negative comments about past employers or colleagues as it could reflect badly on you. Instead, focus on how you overcame challenges and why this job appeals to you.

4. Discussions of salary

Discussing your current or past salary can be off-putting for an interviewer and although they may ask about your expectations its best to save detailed conversations surrounding money until later in the process when an offer is made.

5. Over-familiarity

Interviewers want to get to know you but it’s important to maintain a professional distance. Avoid using slang or jokes as they may feel inappropriate and keep your body language and gestures professional too.

“So, what questions do you have for us?”

It’s the inevitable question that comes at the end of nearly every job interview — and yet it’s the one question job seekers rarely have prepared an answer to. And when people do think to prepare for this part of the interview, they often ask bland stock questions that aren’t truly important to their job hunt.

People get so hung up on preparing for the question they might get asked that they often forget to answer important questions they should have and need answers to.

Unfortunately, in a down economy, job hunters tend to adopt a scarcity mindset. If you need work, you may not be able to afford to be picky about which offer you accept, but that doesn’t mean you have to approach the interview from that frame of mind, LIKEWISE in a candidate’s market you need to avoid posturing in a verbal sense, the mindset should be the same in both a candidate’s and client driven markets, always the same preparation and process and understanding your power of right of refusal once offered.

Rather, if you ask questions as though you are weighing the offer of this job against other offers (whether you are or not) you’ll be in a better position to know if the job is a good fit for you and how you can best succeed with the company.

Remember: The power in these situations is with the listener, so you can end on a powerful note by asking thoughtful, insightful questions that not only make the interviewer think, but give you answers you need to make a choice about whether or not to accept the job.

Here are my top five do’s:

1. Which of my skills do you see as most important for the challenges that come with the position? 

2. How will the company help me develop? 

You don’t want to simply apply your skills; you also want to improve and learn new things. Make sure there is a plan or a support system to ensure this happens before you accept the job. This can come in form of support for continuous professional development or other support such as coaching or mentoring schemes. Asking this question also shows the interviewer that you’re interested in self-improvement and growing with the company.

3. Can you tell me a little about the team I’ll be working with? 

This is an excellent question to address the culture of the company — without actually asking about the “culture” of the company. You might find you get a very different answer than what’s printed in the company’s mission statement or on their website. It will help you to understand how well you fit in with the company, and psychologically it’s a great question to ask because it gently assumes you’ll be getting the position.

4. What constitutes success with this position and company?

 This is a great way to demonstrate that you’re interested in succeeding (not just punching a time clock) but it also gives you key insights into the expectations of the position and the culture of the company.

5. Do you see any gaps in my skills or qualifications that I need to fill? 

This is a bold, gutsy question. Not everyone is going to be confident enough to ask it, which is going to set you apart from the competition. To the interviewer, it shows that you’re a bold thinker and demonstrates that you’re willing to fill any gaps that might exist. For you, the worst-case scenario is that there are gaps that will preclude you from getting the job, but that’s valuable information to take into your next interview. In the best case, the interviewer won’t have any answer, and hopefully you’ll be shortlisted for the position!

Some interviewers may consider this portion of the interview a “throwaway,” answering easy questions about salary, benefits, time off, etc. But for the applicant, it’s an excellent opportunity to stand out, get important answers you need to know if you’re a good fit for the job, and demonstrate that you’re an individual, not just a resume in a pile.

Of course, you don’t have to wait until the end to ask your questions. In fact, it is much better (and much more natural) if you cover these questions during the interview.

As always, I’d love to hear your views. Have you got any other key questions a job hunter should ask the potential employer in an interview?

Working as an Occupational Therapist

Working as an Occupational Therapist

People with disabilities, chronic sickness, ageing, and other long-term problems rely on occupational therapists to assist them in their daily lives. Helping folks overcome numerous obstacles so that they may live as independently as feasible is what you’ll be doing in this position. In some instances, you may be teaching someone a new method to work, or making modifications to their current setting, so that their daily routines become more manageable.

In your job as an occupational therapist, you’ll have the opportunity to work with people from all walks of life. You’d be supporting patients recuperating from major surgery or a severe injury, persons with mental disorders, people with special education needs, and those who are elderly.

When dealing with any of the following, you may need to change their work or home environment to make it more accommodating. You might, for example, arrange for stairlifts or level access showers for an older person who desires to remain independent.

Working with patients and their families to improve their quality of life is one of the most fulfilling aspects of becoming an occupational therapist. Supporting an individual’s ability to live on their own might help alleviate the stress on their loved ones. Clients and their support networks aren’t the only ones you’d be working with; you’d also be working in different groups or as part of a multidisciplinary team. Hospitals, clinics, charities, jails, and social services departments are examples of these situations.

Duties and Responsibilities

Occupational therapists assess patients on more than just their ability to move freely. To help individuals have whole and meaningful lives, they provide practical answers. Occupation therapists have a wide range of responsibilities based on the industry they operate in and the people they help. However, most of their work occurs in healthcare facilities or the community.

An occupational therapist’s duties often include the following:

  • The physical, verbal, interpersonal, and cognitive abilities of a patient are evaluated.
  • Developing and implementing a treatment plan and activities that are suitable
  • Recommending and organizing assistance for loved ones, caregivers, or clients
  • Routine clerical duties, such as preparing reports, making phone calls, and maintaining files and case notes
  • Keeping other medical professionals, such as physicians, family members, and caregivers, updated on the patient’s condition and treatment plan.
  • Participating in multi-professional case meetings to evaluate treatment outcomes
  • advising others on the best ways to accomplish their daily duties
  • It’s all about making the environment more accessible for persons with disabilities – whether it’s at home or work.


Like any other career, becoming an occupational therapist requires numerous personal qualities. This is a public-facing job; therefore, you will meet new individuals every day. So your interpersonal skills must be superb. An occupational therapist must immediately establish relationships with a variety of clients.

You must be patient, sympathetic, and eager. You can make the difference between someone walking after a significant operation and being in the hospital. Positive thinking helps someone to release and recuperate.

Occupational therapists must be quick on their feet. If a patient’s therapy isn’t working, the capacity to immediately shift course is required. It would help if you also work effectively in a team since you will be interacting with other healthcare professionals.

Occupational therapists must be adaptable while dealing with patients’ highs and lows. Flexibility is vital while working with patients since their needs may alter at any time.

Occupational therapists must be effective communicators. This involves clear written and vocal communication to correctly identify patient requirements and explain treatment procedures. They must also collaborate with other healthcare experts and record treatment plans and progress.

If you want to work in occupational therapy, you need to know how to get there. Like many other healthcare professions, occupational therapy requires substantial study and training to get certified. Most occupational therapists have a master’s degree, but others opt to obtain a doctorate to succeed in their industry.

Writing a Cover Letter that Can Get You an Interview

Writing a Cover Letter that Can Get You an Interview

A well-written cover letter is a chance for you to explain why you are the ideal candidate for the position to potential employers. A cover letter is, in essence, a well-crafted sales presentation. If your resume is well-written, you’ll have a better chance of making it to the following interviewing stage.

As a result, recruiters want to know why you are a good match for their organisation. It’s essential to convey your qualifications in a manner that intrigues the employer while also being succinct when crafting an effective cover letter.

What Exactly is a Cover Letter?

When you apply for a job, you must provide a cover letter in addition to your CV. In your cover letter, you should go into depth about your qualifications for the position you’re applying for. Unlike a resume, a cover letter builds on the facts of your prior career and conveys your personality.

Employers use cover letters to narrow the pool of candidates for open jobs and select which candidates will be contacted for an interview. Cover letters are an essential part of the application process since they are your first impression and introduction to a prospective company.

Recruiters and hiring managers can tell a pre-written letter from a mile away, so be careful to tailor your cover letter to each specific job opportunity.

Conduct a Research

Do your homework about the organisation and the position you’re looking for before putting pen to paper on your cover letter. Get a feel for the company’s vibe. A startup may be more relaxed and down-to-earth, whereas a big corporation is more formal.


Provide your basic contact information, the date the letter was sent, and the name and address of the recipient in a formal business letter. For both in-person and online submissions of your letter, use this format. Use a plain typeface and all-black text to make your point. Choose a typeface that matches the style of your CV, such as Arial or another basic resume font.

If you can, keep your message to three or four paragraphs on a single page at most. Often, little is more. Close with “Sincerely,” “Best regards,” or other professional closings. To sign a paper document, either sign it and print your name or enter your name in the closure if you don’t have the technology accessible.

The format of a well-written cover letter is straightforward. Avoid generic greetings like “Dear Sir or Madam” or “To Whom It May Concern,” which give the impression that you didn’t put any effort into your communication. Instead, search to discover the individual’s identity responsible for the recruiting process.

Body of the Cover Letter

Your cover letter should include three paragraphs. These persuasive paragraphs must persuade the recruiting manager that you are qualified for the position and should be interviewed.

A cover letter is designed to be a concise introduction that highlights your most remarkable qualities, a little of your character, and answers any queries the recruiter may have raised. Cover letters should be no longer than one page and 250-400 words.


To begin, express gratitude to the reader for their attention and concern. Specify that you’re eager to see what comes next in the process. “I look forward to discussing how my abilities may add to the demands of your company,” for example, would be an appropriate response. Then, provide your email address and phone number so that others may get in touch with you.

Employers will be better able to judge who you are as a person—and what you may be able to achieve for their company—if you include a little bit of your personality in your cover letter.

Easy Steps in Hiring a Civil Engineer

Easy Steps in Hiring a Civil Engineer

When it comes to civil engineering recruitment, it might seem like a race against time. When it comes to sourcing and engaging top talent in this area, the adage “excellent candidates have a limited shelf life” is something many firms have come to understand and respect. If your recruiting process takes an excessive amount of time, you may discover that the most qualified civil engineering applicants have accepted offers from other organizations before you have the opportunity to make your own.

To ensure that your organization has the most excellent chance of attracting top talent, it is critical to simplify your recruitment process in order to keep civil engineering prospects interested in and focused on your job openings—the following are suggestions for improving your recruiting efforts in today’s highly competitive industry.

Establish a Deadline

When there are no objectives or deadlines to achieve, recruitment processes might become sluggish. If your recruiting process is left open-ended, you run the risk of losing enthusiasm and applicants as the process proceeds. Establish deadlines for each step, with time being the most critical factor in securing the finest civil engineering applicant. Communication with applicants about your timeframe is also crucial to keep them interested throughout the process.

Commitment to the Deadline

Everyone engaged in the decision-making process for recruiting must be wholly dedicated to your deadline. When top executives are unable to participate in an interview or study the listing of prospects, companies miss out on excellent candidates. As a result, make sure that no one is considering a vacation or business trip and that enough time has been set aside to guarantee a smooth recruiting process.

Candidates Should Be Provided with a Great Deal of Information

While applicants may conduct their research on your organization, you must also promote your employment opportunity at the same rate that candidates market their abilities and expertise. So, give them a clear job description and information about your business, such as its organizational structure and management, culture, and clientele. You may set yourself apart from the competition by offering the background information and engaging them with your firm. If applying directly you will be at the mercy of the HR manager or hiring manager, sometimes position descriptions are very out of date, so if you’re working with a recruiter, they can often provide much more up to date and intangible information not necessarily found on the PD.

Make Your Interviews Customized to Each Applicant

Interviewing a candidate is a one-size-fits-all process.

Develop some pointers and pertinent lines of enquiry before an interview by going through the candidate’s Resume with the panel members and any relevant individuals. You may obtain a better sense of a candidate’s personality and motivations by tailoring the interview process rather than relying on traditional interview questions. In addition to making a better impression, personalizing the interview will show your company’s interest in them.

There are several less formal ways to interview candidates for civil engineering jobs, including:

  1. Casual coffee or lunch meeting: This type of interview setting can create a relaxed atmosphere and give the interviewer an opportunity to get to know the candidate on a personal level.
  2. Site visit: A site visit can allow the interviewer to see the candidate in action and observe their knowledge and skills firsthand.
  3. Group interview: Inviting multiple candidates for a group interview can give a glimpse of their teamwork skills and help assess their communication and collaboration abilities.
  4. Behavioral or competency-based interview: This type of interview focuses on the candidate’s past experiences and behaviors to predict their future performance.
  5. Project-based interview: Give the candidate a small project to work on, and then discuss their thought process, decision making and problem-solving skills.

Note: While these methods can provide valuable insights into a candidate’s abilities, it’s important to remember that they should be used in combination with more formal interview methods to gain a complete understanding of the candidate’s qualifications.


Make sure to keep up the pace after each interview by following up swiftly. Keep in touch with prospects and let them know when they expect to hear from you again. If you want to do second or third interviews for civil engineering applicants, do it from the beginning of the process so that there is no lag time.

When you locate a brilliant civil engineering applicant, make an offer or ask them for the next round of interviews. There is no need to wait 48 hours or look at other prospects if you’ve identified the ideal individual for the position. Streamline your recruiting process.

Finding and recruiting civil engineers is difficult. When you find prospective recruits, keep them involved with your firm until you can make an offer or not. Don’t delay, be organized, and simplify your recruiting process to get an advantage over your competition. If going with a recruiter, here’s what you should expect from using their agency services.

From the perspective of a recruiter, follow-up is an essential part of the recruitment process for several reasons:

  1. Shows professionalism: Following up with candidates demonstrates that the recruiter is organised, efficient and takes the recruitment process seriously. This can help build a positive impression of the company and strengthen its employer brand.
  2. Provides closure: Following up with candidates who have been rejected or who did not get the job helps to provide closure to the recruitment process and ensures that they are left with a positive impression of the company.
  3. Maintains candidate engagement: Following up with candidates who are still in the recruitment process keeps them engaged and informed. This can help to prevent them from losing interest or considering other job opportunities.
  4. Increases candidate satisfaction: When candidates receive regular updates and clear communication throughout the recruitment process, it can increase their satisfaction and perception of the company.
  5. Helps to identify the best fit: Regular follow-up can provide an opportunity for the recruiter to gauge the candidate’s interest and enthusiasm for the role, which can help to identify the best fit for the job.
  6. Improves time-to-hire: Following up with candidates in a timely manner can help to speed up the recruitment process and reduce the time-to-hire.

Overall, following up with candidates is an important aspect of the recruitment process for recruiters as it helps to build a positive relationship with candidates, maintain their engagement, and identify the best fit for the role.

For more helpful tips and tricks and or general advice contact the team at Gateway Synergy Recruitment, or visit Careers ⋆ Gateway Synergy Recruitment

or visit our Gateway Synergy Recruitment Blog for more helpful articles Get the Latest Recruitment News at Gateway Synergy Recruitment Blog

Remember! Your CV & LinkedIn are the first impression a recruiter or hiring manager has of you, make it count!

Common Hiring Mistakes by Small Companies

Common Hiring Mistakes by Small Companies

When it comes to recruiting new employees, it is critical for every small company to be quite choosy. When you don’t have a huge team of people working for you, it takes a lot of concentration and preparation to get someone on board. If you are the owner of a small firm, you can ill afford to make any errors in judgment. Recruiting new personnel is the most challenging issue that small companies must deal with these days. When you have a small firm, every new employee has a significant influence on the company’s day-to-day operations.

As a result of the limited size of most HR departments in smaller companies, they generally assume a wide range of tasks. It’s understandable that you’re concerned that they won’t have enough time to locate the right person to fill the open post. It’s still possible for small firms to master the recruiting process after studying the frequent hiring mistakes of human resources personnel.

Below are some of the common hiring mistakes made by small companies:

Confusing Job Description

Job descriptions that do not accurately reflect the job’s requirements will draw in candidates with insufficient credentials and abilities. To find the best candidates for a position, it is essential to crafting a compelling job description. It would help if you wrote a well-crafted job description to attract the best possible candidates. Before putting the job description out there, get it reviewed by recruiters once you’ve finished drafting it. The following advice will help you write a job description that will attract the best candidates.

  1. Are you providing accurate and up-to-date details?
  2. Is there a special terminology you’ve used to define the job?
  3. Is the job description clear on what abilities are required?

To attract the top applicants, you should keep questions like the above in mind while writing a job description.

Disorganized Recruitment Process

Any procedure that is not well-organized can cause unnecessary difficulties and delays inside a company. As a result, the second step in eliminating these roadblocks from your recruiting process is to establish criteria for your hiring process. It would help if you planned how to recruit prospects from beginning to end; otherwise, you may see yourself speeding through the process and making incorrect hiring decisions.

Proactive Hiring

It’s possible to take issues into your own hands rather than relying on suitable applicants to find you. One way to prevent hiring the incorrect person is to be proactive in recruiting efforts. Figuring out where your best candidate spends the most of their online time is a good place to start this recruiting strategy. You’ll be ready to hire them when the right opportunity presents itself if you know this information. This recruiting enables you to tap into a larger talent pool to locate the finest candidates.

When it comes to hiring, don’t you think following these hiring best practices and not making these common mistakes would help you get better results? Investing in your company’s long-term success by creating a strong talent pool is essential for increasing productivity and fostering long-term relationships with your workers. Figure out which mistake your company is still making and find a solution to make it right this time. Good luck!