"Hello Hayley, I am 20 years of age and have been on JSA for about a year and a half on and of. In march i came to the end of the future job fund scheme where i was working in a primary school as a admin assistant. Now im back on JSA but im doing voluntry work in a hospital as a admin assistant, As im classed as internal i applied for a administrator position which is a doctor’s secretary and i have a interview tuesday! Which im really excited about but really nervous at the same time. It will be a pannel interview of three people which i know so it wont be so bad. But im just wondering what questions will they ask so i can prepare myself? And any tips you could give me please. Thank you x " [sic]
The answer from Ms Taylor:
"Congratulations, you are living proof that volunteering really does open doors and a world of opportunities, as now you are at interview stage!! It’s impossible for me to be specific with what questions you will be asked during your interview, but I would say that at 20 and without a vast amount of work history, the questions are likely to be more generic. Be sure to have enough copies of your C.V in order to offer one to each member of the panel, be clear on why you would like the position, and have a great answer prepared, smile, show enthusiasm, tell them you are willing and eager to learn, have at least two questions prepared to ask them, and don’t forget to thank them for their time when you leave. I wish you luck, and am sure you will be fantastic. Hayley x"
Now I really do hope the young woman gets (or got) the job. But it won't be on the advice from Ms Taylor. For most admin jobs you are likely to be given a test before the interview, at the computer or on paper, to show whether your English, maths and IT skills are adequate. This candidate would be unlikely to pass unless her poor English in this post is just carelessness which she can put right. You don't need to hand out copies of your CV. They've already got them, photocopied, in front of them. You will look rather foolish if you don't anticipate this. You don't know what questions you're going to be asked, but you do need to gen up on the nature of the business; they are not just going to ask about you, but about what you know, and I would have thought that would particularly apply to a medical secretary post; so do your homework.
It's a bit worrying, really.