How to Research a Company Before a Job Interview?

How to research a company before a job interview?

In this video, I will discuss a 9 step framework that you can use to research a company before your upcoming interviews.

If you have ever interviewed before, you should know that questions regarding the company are common throughout the process.

You want to show throughout the process that you have done your research about the company, know where the company is going and why you’re excited about the same.

This article will give you a list of questions that you need to prepare for, specifically about the company.

Let’s get started right away….

Start collecting the following information about the company and use it throughout the interview process.

Company’s Vision and Mission

This is the first piece of information that you should collect - The company’s vision and mission.

But let’s see what the differences between those two are:

Vision – The long term dream.

Mission – The current task at hand to achieve that vision.

You should understand the vision for the company and its mission. You can easily find this information on the company’s corporate site.

Just do a google search for “<company name> vision” or “<company name> mission".

Startups may not have this information, so do your best to get what you can online.

2. Company’s Culture and Values

Next is “Culture” and ”Values”.

Culture is the processes and practices that make up the work environment.

Values are the rules by which decisions are made on a day to day basis.

You will be an integral part of the culture, so it’s important to internalize it and make sure that the culture works for you.

Some companies have a tough culture, so you should do your research early on.

Also, make sure you agree with the values of the companies.

Again, do a google search for this information.

3. Products and Services

Get a sense of the products and services that the company you are joining offers to its customers. Be able to talk through 1 or 2 of the products in detail, so spend some time understanding them.

If you know which product you will be working with, make sure you understand that product.

Also, know 1-2 products you really love about the company and why?

Additionally, 1-2 products that you dislike and/or would change.

4. Customers

Who are the target customers for the company? What's the demographic like? E.g. Single moms within the age of 25-35. What do customers like about the company’s products? What do they dislike?

These are some of the questions that you need to get answered as part of this section.

5. Competitors

List out 2-3 of the top competitors of the company. Find out what do the competitors’ do better.

What does the company do better than it’s competitors. Again a search for “company x’s competitors” will give you a list.

6. Company’s Management Team

Find out who the CEO is. What is her or his background? The last thing you want is to get caught off guard on what the CEO’s name is. Additionally, what does the rest of the management team consist of?

You can get this information by searching online.

7.  Company’s Metrics/Financials

Understand how the company did last year and last quarter. You should find out it’s revenue, its gross profit, gross margin, net profit and net margins.

You should find out how the business is growing i.e. its growth rate.

You should find out which product is contributing to the most growth.

If your company is public you should be able to find this information on finance.yahoo.com.

Its harder if your company is private, so do your best. Employers will also understand if that is the case.

If the company is pre revenue, try to find out other metrics like the total number of customers it has.

8. Future Plans

Understand what the company wants to do in the future. What products/services does it want to introduce? Where does it want to invest in the future? What threats exist in achieving its future plans?

CEO’s normally talk about their future in events, conferences and you should be able to find many youtube videos on information like this.

9. News/Rumors

Collect any recent news about the company you are interviewing for.

You will sound very intelligent during your interviews if you are able to outline something recent that happened in the news about the company.

Summary

In conclusion, research these 9 steps before going into your upcoming job interview. I have no doubt that you will sound confident before going into your interview and stand apart from 90% of the candidates applying for the same job.

Company’s Vision and Mission

Company’s Culture and Values

  1. Products and Services
  2. Customers
  3. Competitors
  4. Management Team
  5. Metrics/Financials
  6. Future Plans
  7. News/Rumors

Till next time, 

KUNAL CHOPRA

Take Action and Reach The Stars