Career Expert Offers Tips for Clinching the Job Offer

MENLO PARK, CA - It's not the Super Bowl, but in a competitive employment market it may feel like the big game when a job applicant advances to the final interview stage. Winning means landing the job and, according to Liz Hughes, executive director of specialized staffing firm OfficeTeam, it's no time to put your career prospects in the hands of fate.

"Candidates who make a hiring manager's final cut tend to be equally qualified, possessing all or most of the requisite skills and experience for the position," Hughes said. "At this step in the process, the interviewer is typically scrutinizing each person's interpersonal skills, professionalism and potential fit within the organization."

Hughes offers six "game-day" tips to help job seekers gain the competitive edge in the final stages of the hiring process: 

  • Don't let the clock run out. Respond promptly to calls requesting additional meetings, information or references. Taking too long could signal disinterest on your part. 
  • Show good sportsmanship. Send a thank-you note to each person who interviews you. Job seekers who skip this step may lose out to savvy candidates who extend this simple courtesy.
  • Play to your strengths. During interviews and in your correspondence, emphasize why you are a solid fit for the role and what specific ways you will contribute if hired. Don't just show you want a job; show why you want this job.
  • Set your game plan. Have realistic salary expectations and be flexible. In today's cost-conscious business environment, hiring managers often have little room for salary negotiation. 
  • Have questions of your own ready. Don't be surprised when the hiring manager asks, "What questions do you have for me?" Develop informed queries based on your research of the firm. Also inquire about how the open position supports the big-picture objectives of the department or company. 
  • Check your references. It's not unusual for hiring managers to call references a second time to clarify points and gain additional information before making a final decision. Keep your references informed of your progress throughout the process and thank them for their assistance. 

OfficeTeam has more than 300 locations worldwide and offers online job search services at

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