Many employers look for people who are detail-oriented when they are adding to their team. They know detail-oriented people can be counted on to get the job done thoroughly and efficiently. Detail-oriented employees are less likely to make mistakes; they are more invested in positive outcomes and are people you can count on. That is why it is essential to show the employer that you have exceptional attention to detail in an interview.
Begin Before the Interview
As a detail-oriented person, preparation should come naturally to you. There is never a more important time to get out your checklist than when you are presented with an opportunity to advance your career.
- Double-check your resume. Check that there are no typos, inaccuracies, or errors.
- Look at your cover letter. Be sure it is relevant to the job you are applying to.
- Complete your application carefully. Be sure that all job titles, dates, addresses, and contact information are correct.
Research the Company
The best interview tip is to prepare well for the interview. Study the company where you are interviewing. Review their website and any marketing materials you can find. If you know the person you are interviewing with, research them as well. Reading their LinkedIn profile can be a great way to learn about their background and see if you have any contact in common.
Check out Reviews
You don’t want to focus on the negative, but it is wise to look for any Google or Glassdoor reviews of the company as well as looking for any media coverage they may have gotten. Look for patterns, but don’t worry if there is negative feedback from just a couple of employees. Don’t bring up negative information in your interview; just use it for context and to give you a well-rounded impression of the company. If you do come across something you are curious about, ask about it in a positive way. For example, if they seem to have a lot of turnover, ask what measures they take to hold onto good people.
Plan Your Route
If you are interviewing in person, map out the travel route the day before your meeting is scheduled. If possible, do a dry run the day before by driving to the location at the same time your interview is planned. This will help you identify any traffic or other snags you could run into along the way in Wichita, KS, or the surrounding area. Check that there is no construction or events planned the day of your interview. It is tough to claim to be detail-oriented to the interviewer if you stroll into the building late. Build in a little bit of extra time to be sure you will arrive on schedule. You can always wait in the parking lot for a few minutes if you are too early. Use that time to peruse your resume, review your detail-oriented skills or just take a few deep breaths, so you are calm when you enter the building.
Be Ready for Zoom
If your interview will be on video, pay strong attention to how you appear on camera and what your background looks like from the perspective of the interviewer. Be sure there is nothing distracting visible behind you. The rise of video conferencing during the coronavirus pandemic has led to “Rate my Room” accounts on Twitter in which the ideal background composition is discussed. If this sounds interesting (and hello! You are detail-oriented — of course, it does!), check it out here. But a clean, minimal background in a room where you won’t be distracted by noise or interrupted by others is just fine. Be sure the lighting is good and that you have all necessary reference materials in front of you or within easy reach.
Check Your Wardrobe
Whether you interview in person or on Zoom, you should dress to impress. That means wearing interview attire appropriate for the position, such as a suit in most cases. Make sure everything you wear is clean and pressed, no buttons are loose, no threads are dangling, that your hem isn’t coming down, and there are no stains. A tidy appearance is important for any interviewee, but it is particularly essential to be vigilant if you are trying to present yourself as a detail-oriented person. Ask a friend or family member to look at what you are wearing and how you look on video. Ask them to critique your look and offer any suggestions for improvement. If you are a person who wears makeup, keep it subtle and flattering, not distracting to the viewer.
Answer the Question Asked
If you’ve ever watched public figures being interviewed, you’ll notice that sometimes they dodge the questions that are asked to instead communicate the information they want to get across. As someone who claims to have detail-oriented skills, this practice will make you look like you are not paying attention. Listen carefully, repeat the question back if you need clarification, then answer every aspect of the question.
Detail-oriented Interview Questions You Can Expect
- Why do you consider yourself to be detail-oriented?
- Can you provide specific examples of detail-oriented skills?
- How do you keep track of tasks and projects?
- How do you control distractions?
- Tell me about a time you made a mistake. How did you fix it?
- How do you balance quality with time constraints?
- How do you tell an employee you found a mistake in their work?
- How do you handle repetitive tasks?
- How do you make sure you understand the scope of a project?
What Qualities Do Detail-Oriented People Have?
The top qualities of a detail-oriented person are that they pay attention to small details, check to make sure everyone on their team understands the project, keeps the team on track if they are in a leadership position. They double-check their work and offer to do the same for friends and family. They often do well in finance, accounting, or healthcare-related positions.
How Can You Demonstrate Attention To Detail?
Here are a few examples common to people with detail-oriented skills. If any of them pertain to you, be sure to mention them in the interview. Provide specific examples if you can. That is one of the best interview tips we can offer.
- You analyze problems from a variety of angles.
- You are a planner and appreciate habits and routines.
- You are proactive in creating better processes or methods.
- You ask questions and pay close attention to the answers.
- You can effectively prioritize tasks.
- You can read between the lines and pick up small details.
- You don’t rush or take shortcuts.
- You have strong organizational skills.
- You have strong time-management skills.
- You learn from your mistakes.
- You never turn in a project that is less than 100% error-free.
- You notice things most people overlook.
- You proofread your work, often more than once.
- You are an exceptional problem-solver.
- You are willing to put in as much time as it takes to get the job done right.
Why do employers prefer detail-oriented candidates?
Managers know the tasks will get done completely, and nothing will fall through the cracks. Those with detail-oriented skills are the ones who notice typos on websites, straighten pictures hanging in the hallway, and always have a full tank of gas. Who wouldn’t want to hire such a vigilant individual?
Is There Anything Negative About Being Detail-Oriented?
It depends on the job. Sometimes detail-oriented people can get lost in the weeds. They can miss deadlines or be slower than the average person because they’re so busy double-checking work. Detail-oriented people sometimes don’t have the ability to see the big picture. They can get micro-focused on a task without thinking about how it fits into company goals and objectives. Choose examples in your interview that demonstrate that you possess the positive aspects of attention to detail without any of the drawbacks. Express that you are detail-oriented in how you perform, but able to pay close attention to the clock to make sure you are proceeding in a timely manner. Share examples of when you have discussed larger company goals with your manager to see where your contributions fit into the organization as a whole.
Share Your Experiences
Show your attention to detail by sharing specific examples of occasions when you were called upon to be detail-oriented. They can be specific projects where you broke down a larger task into manageable parts and checked them off one by one to make sure every aspect was handled. You can also discuss a time that you found an error that others overlooked and were able to save the company money or prevent a small issue from becoming a larger one.
Don’t Fake It
If you are not detail-oriented, don’t pretend you are to get a job. You might get the job in the moment, but chances are you will eventually be found out and lose the job or just be miserable in a position that is not the right fit. There are plenty of roles that don’t require exceptional attention to detail. These positions may require people to be more visionary and big picture thinkers. If attention to detail is your strength, show off those abilities in the interview. If you are a big picture person, communicate that instead. Honesty is the most important quality in any interview.
Looking for More Interview Tips?
Need help finding a job in Wichita, KS, that fits your skills, interests, and experience where you can use your detail-oriented skills? Let the Top Notch team help you get the job you want! Get in touch today!