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Interview Tips

Interviewing can be stressful, but we want you to be successful. We have interviewed thousands of people and learned why some candidates are more successful than others. We want to share that knowledge with you so we can get to know you better in the interview.

Prior to the interview

Read the job announcement and job description.

Knowing how your knowledge and skills can be applied to the job is a powerful tool. Also, it is common for these announcements to have specific tips and resources listed within that can give you an edge. Read through it prior to submitting the application and use it to prepare for the interview.

Do your research.

We have laid out all of the information you need on JoinEDSO! Note that some resources are referenced throughout different pages on the website. For example, our Annual Reports are published every year. They contain specific information about everything we do, changes we've made, statistics, and other valuable information. You can really get to know EDSO in those reports. Visit our Facebook page and see what we have been up to recently and watch a Welcome Ceremony. 

 

Consider a Ride-Along or Tour.

Everyone has the opportunity to ride-along with a deputy for a shift. Dispatchers can sit alongside a dispatcher. Correctional Officers can tour one of our facilities. Ask us about this. Keep in mind we may not be able to fit you in before your interview so inquire early on. 

Do a test run to ensure you know where to go and how long it takes to get here. 

Interviews are tightly scheduled together. Late arrivals will not be interviewed. 

Anticipate our questions.

Think about what kind of questions we might ask you and prepare yourself to answer them ahead of time. Consider practicing these answers with a friend or by yourself in front of  a mirror. Our questions are often open-ended and designed to get you to answer questions at length. If you answer an interview in one or two sentences, you probably answered poorly. Consider giving your answer, then explaining why this is your answer, or why alternative solutions won't work, or whether you have experience dealing with a similar issue. 

During the interview

Sell your skills.

If you read the job announcement, you know what skills are required for the job. Emphasize the corresponding skills in your interview either while answering our questions or volunteered in an opening or closing statement. 

Don't tell us what we want to hear.

All questions are designed to learn what kind of employee you might be. A scenario question is your opportunity to demonstrate problem-solving techniques. Answer from the perspective of the job you are applying for. Consider: What would you do? Why would you do it that way? What other options are there? Are there any consequences to these options? These kind of considerations are very useful.

Interview, not a test.

You should do as much research as possible to ensure you can answer job-specific questions. You should have an understanding of the responsibilities of the position. The questions are designed to be answered by anyone, but only answered well by the most prepared applicants. The objective is to get to know you. Interviews are opportunities for you to demonstrate that you understand and are interested in the job, have potential to succeed, and are able to communicate effectively. We like to hear whether you have personal philosophies or experiences that drive your decision-making. 

Ask us questions!

Interviews work both ways. If you have questions about the job, we prefer that you make an informed decision.

Consider using a closing statement.

This is a good time to mention anything in your resume that did not get covered. Explain why your skills, experience, and education make you the best candidate for the job.

Common Problems

Not answering the question

It is important that you understand the question. Sometimes when we are nervous, we only pick up on parts of the question. Sometimes that leads to interviewees answering a completely different question. If you need the question repeated, just ask. 

Being too vague

Don't tell the interviewer the bare minimum. If you are knowledgeable on a topic, wouldn't you want to demonstrate that? It would be reasonable for an interviewee to assume that an interviewee who barely answered the question might not know much else about it. As stated above, if you can do that, relate it to your experience, and demonstrate knowledge of EDSO, you're definitely on the right track.

Not showing interest

You might be applying to multiple agencies. That is understandable. However, interviewees who don't express knowledge of our agency or a particular interest, it might look like you are looking for any job. The ideal candidate wants to work here, has done their research, and expresses enthusiasm. 

Not doing research 

Law enforcement issues are often headline news. It is important to know about hot-button issues that might apply to the job and be able to speak about them. The ideal candidate is someone who has already done the research and is confident they want the job. If you are reading this, you are already a step ahead.

Not learning anything about you

This one is very common. If a resume was sufficient to learn about someone there would be no use for an interview! It is common to complete an interview and feel we did not learn anything about you. We want to know what kind of employee you will be, what your interests and goals might be, how you make decisions, etc. You'll find that most interview questions are designed to elicit that information. It is up to you to provide it. This is the main objective of the interview.

That's it!

It doesn't take much to get ahead of the curve. By following the tips above, you can maximize your score and improve your chance of getting hired. Feel free to chat with us if you have any questions!