5 Job Interview Tips for the Energy Industry
You’ve got a job interview request!
You’re going to want to prepare before the interview if you want to nail it and get the job of your dreams.
But it’s been a while since your last job interview, so you’re feeling a bit rusty.
If you aren’t working with AVA Energy on this position, and don’t have our expert consultants supporting you through the interview process, then you’ll need a few tips.
That’s why we have decided to come up with the TOP 5 ENERGY JOB INTERVIEW TIPS so that we can help you out in your job search, even if you aren’t working with us directly.
Whether you’re in a technical, commercial or executive role, covering the bases with the projects you’ve worked on can really help give the potential employers a good idea of your capabilities.
What we mean by this is the values of the projects as well as the sizes in terms of Megawatts/KW. This can be a huge talking point in interviews and can give employers insight into the scale of work you are used to.
Make sure you keep it relevant thought – it’s no good going to an interview for an offshore wind project and talking about your oil refinery experience. If you don’t have relevant industry experience – transferrable skills and technologies will get you through it.
Say for instance you’re interviewing for a position in a CCGT power plant, you have no experience working on CCGT projects but you do have experience operating gas turbines on offshore oil and gas rigs, talk about all the models you’ve worked on, how large were they and how crucial these turbines were on those rigs to keep everything ticking!
Your skillset will vary across different project sizes, employers will be looking to get the clearest picture of what you are like when you work in the interview – so be sure to talk about this!
In every industry there is, you will build a relationship with at least one person from a different department or company. The key relationships to talk about within the energy industry are relationships with contractors, suppliers and OEMs.
Good relationships with suppliers and contractors can be hugely beneficial for the operations of the business whether you’re in a power plant, and office or an offshore rig. Whatever your level within the company, if you are in a position that directly interacts with a supplier or contractor, the ability to maintain and build on a good relationship ensure a synergy between both parties. The better the relationship, the better the synergy, the better the result. It’s simple.
Along with the general operations of the company, strong relations can be beneficial for the overall business. If you and your company are known for working well with contractors and suppliers, you will attract the best of both – keeping you ahead of the competition and making your job easier through the lack of problems arising!
3. Specific Equipment/Systems/Software
It’s absolutely key to highlight specific equipment you have worked on/with in the energy industry. We at AVA have heard an unbelievable number of times phrases such as “a turbine is a turbine” or “if you’ve serviced one, you’ve serviced them all” and we cannot stress enough how much this does not fly with our clients.
Not having the correct training/knowledge on equipment when it has been specified a HUGE disadvantage – unless otherwise highlighted by your potential employer. Training can cost valuable resources which are not always available depending on the project.
If you’re interviewing for a role focused around GT26 turbines, and you’ve got the experience – make sure you go into detail on how long you’ve worked with them, projects they were involved in and exactly what you’ve done with them.
It can also be beneficial to touch upon any other relevant equipment you’ve worked with. You should know from your interview preparation research other models/equipment that the company you are interviewing with use, so make sure you highlight anything of note – it could be a deciding factor between you and another candidate.
4. Prepare for Situational Questions
Now whilst situational questions aren’t necessarily energy specific – you will find the come up more than in other industries.
Situational questions are particularly handy for employers, mostly for technical positions, as it gives them a greater insight into your skillset and more importantly, how you handle situations when everything goes wrong.
The good news is, only a small amount of preparation is required to help get you through these – all you need to do is prepare answers for a few scenarios.
“But what if the questions I’ve prepared for don’t come up?!?!”
Don’t worry – if you cover the bases with the following situations, keeping them in mind will help you think on your feet and deliver a strong answer.
There are around 4 points/questions that you should prepare examples for:
· A time you had a disagreement with a manager/colleague – how was this resolved?
· Describe a situation when something went wrong under your watch – how did you do to overcome this?
· A time you failed to reach/reached a goal at work?
· Describe a time where you went beyond your usual remit at work?
5. Know the competitive market
It’s always good to know your competition, but perhaps even more so within the energy industry as it can seem small at times.
One of the reasons that employers would want you to have an understanding of the competitive market is so you can help the company stay one step ahead of the competition. Generally, this applies to more executive/management positions but it’s always important to know what your competitors are doing to make sure you are doing your bit to keep your company ahead!
Another benefit of knowing the competitive market can be to help your prospective company branch into new areas. We have experienced this multiple times before, where our clients want us to search for forward-thinking candidates who know the market well enough to spot opportunities and drive that change before the competition.
Be sure to do your research before interviewing, if you have ideas then make sure you only touch upon them – as much as you might want the job you can’t give the game away before you’ve secured the role!
So, there it is!
5 top tips for job interviews within the energy industry. Good luck in your interview!