Building a stunning resume is only step one in the lengthy process of getting a job.

If the employer likes your qualifications, the next step is to invite you in for an interview – but if that happens, expect to be judged before you even sit down at the employer’s desk.

Punctuality, first impressions and manner of dress all factor into an employer’s decision on who to hire.

“You don’t have the job yet, so you have to dress at a level above,” says career consultant Keturah Leonforde.

“Often interviewers will make their decision on their candidate even within the first five minutes of the interview.”

When the interviewer gets down to asking questions, Leonforde suggests concise answers that get to the point quickly – but that also offer examples and anecdotes.

“Interviewers remember stories. We forget a laundry list of ‘Here’s five things about me,” but tell me the story and that will be memorable,” she says.

Jarrett Humphries is taking in Leonforde’s tips. The Laurier student plans to graduate this spring and take the first step into a career.

He says he’s learned that the most important thing to do in a job interview is build a rapport with the potential employer.

“You can get so focused on what your answer is that you kind of space out and lose that connection with the interviewer,” he tells CTV.

One question employers love to ask but employee applicants hate to answer is a time-tested query: “What’s your greatest weakness?” or a variation thereof.

“This is where I want to catch you,” notes Leonforde.

The best answer to that question varies from person to person but in general, Leonforde says it should offer up only one weakness – and one that an employer might be able to fix.

“Do not provide a personality trait, because this is not therapy,” she says.

If caught off guard by that or any other question, Leonforde says there’s nothing wrong with asking an interviewer to repeat a question to buy yourself more time to think.

Other job interview tips offered by Leonforde:

  • Research the company and know its history
  • Make eye contact
  • Minimize fiddling and fidgeting
  • Send a follow-up thank you note