Resumes, cover letters, interviews, portfolios – at every stage of the hiring process, the employer is evaluating your work, personality, and approach. But to build the best engineering career, you’ll need to evaluate a potential employer as well. How do you do it?
Here are several ways to evaluate employers so you can choose the company that’s right for you:
Peek through the front door and the back.
Never hesitate to read a company’s website and other promotional materials. They offer the “front door” view; how the company wants others to see it, what the company thinks is important or compelling, and how the company wants to see itself.
Then, head “around back.” Use LinkedIn to look up current and past employees of the company. Look at each employee’s job history with the company, and (if they have left) their jobs since then. If the company offers opportunities for advancement, you’ll see them in current employees’ histories. Likewise, if every “Engineer” left for a “Senior Engineer” position elsewhere, you’ll know the company doesn’t offer that kind of advancement.
Go into your interview with eyes open.
Aim to arrive for your interview ten minutes early. Use this time to gather as much information about your surroundings as you can. How does the receptionist greet you? How are the front desk staff dressed? Is their workplace organized? How old are the computer systems, desks, and chairs? What is the workspace configuration? Is the lighting and temperature comfortable? How do staff members talk to each other, and what do they talk about?
In short: Are these the details you want to see in the place you want to work?
Never, ever pass up an opportunity to ask questions of your own during an interview. While you might have specific questions generated by the conversation itself (and you should ask them!), you can also go in prepared with “stock” questions, like:
- I’ve seen from [your website, the news, etc.] that you’re facing [a particular challenge]. How would my work contribute to addressing this challenge?
- Can you tell me what a day in this job is like?
- What do you like best about working here?
At SoloPoint Solutions, our recruiters specialize in connecting engineering candidates to the best local employers. Contact us today to learn more about our engineering job opportunities in Northern California and beyond!