Bristolians are far more confident than most UK interviewees, according to new research by specialist recruiter Randstad.

When it comes to interviews, 28% of employees in Bristol consider themselves “well-practised”, compared to a UK national average of 24%.

Just under a fifth (19%) of UK workers believe that they are frequently unprepared for their interviews, compared to almost a third (31%) of Bristol’s workers.

What is a common mistake you make in interviews?

  • Mind gone blank: 47% [a], 45% [b]
  • Inadequate preparation: 31% [a], 19% [b]
  • Not dressed appropriately : 4% [a], 5% [b]
  • Forgot important document: 2% [a], 3% [b]
  • Being late: 1% [a], 7% [b]
  • Offending the interviewer: 0% [a], 2% [b]

[a] Bristol, [b] UK average.

Like the rest of the UK, the most common problem for Bristol’s interviewees was their mind going blank in an interview situation. However, the number of Bristolian employees that feel inadequately prepared was over a third greater than the UK average. Looking more closely at responses city by city reveals that Bristol is actually in the top three least prepared cities in the UK, only readier for job interviews than Swansea and Glasgow.

“Inadequate preparation is a common interview mistake I make”

  • Swansea: 49%
  • Glasgow: 33%
  • Bristol: 31%
  • Newcastle: 30%
  • London: 27%

Ruth Jacobs, managing director of Randstad Business Support, said: “Everyone gets given advice on firm handshakes, eye contact and smiles. These things are not to be forgotten, of course, but you also need to be prepared for some the technical and soft skill questions. Besides helping to prevent the dreaded blank-mind scenario, preparation will feed into every other aspect of your interview and ensure the confidence you project has some substance behind it.”

Which of these would make you feel more comfortable in an interview scenario?

  • Guidance on technical and competency questions: 50% [a], 26% [b]
  • A greater understanding of the organisation interviewing you: 38% [a], 46% [b]
  • More practice: 24% [a], 29% [b]
  • Practical interview advice (what to wear etc): 12% [a], 17% [b]

[a] Bristol, [b] UK average.

Half of Bristol’s workers desire guidance on technical questions to improve their interview experience – nearly double the UK average (26%). This is particularly important given Bristol shows a clear trend towards candidates going through more job interviews than average before reaching their current job.

Number of Job Interviews Attended in Bristol compared to UK Average:

  • one: 54% [a], 57% [b]
  • two: 24% [a], 16% [b]
  • three: 11% [a], 7% [b]
  • four: 1% [a], 3% [b]
  • five: 4% [a], 4% [b]

 [a] Bristol, [b] UK average.

"performing in job interviews is about being able to convey your work history and achievements in the way that best reflects your talents"

Ruth Jacobs, managing director of Randstad Business Support, explains: “Employees in Bristol possess one of the vital prerequisites for job success – the ability to recognise their own weaknesses and the desire to work to improve them. Although they stand out on assessments of their readiness for interviews, they clearly want hard data on the skills and competencies employers are looking for – and want it more than anyone else in the UK. This displays excellent insight into the job market on their part.

"Performing well in job interviews is not just about being better than the competition – it’s about being able to convey your work history and achievements in the way that best reflects your talents. Recruitment consultants can offer real advice that can make all the difference to your success at interview.”