Interview tomorrow. Would like some advice?

jws86jws86 Member Posts: 77 ■■□□□□□□□□
I am new to the site, but have been browsing for a few weeks now. I am currently enrolled in a 2 year degree in IT Systems Engineering at a local college. I have about 20 credits left to complete and will be finished before the end of this year. I have been recently applying for jobs and landed an interview tomorrow for a Help Desk Support Technician position. I have zero experience at a help desk position and have never worked for a call center. I currently work as a machine operator which I have been doing at the same place for the last 8 years. I had previously worked at Walmart for a year before my machine operator postion. I am quite nervous about this interview and am looking for any pointers from some of you that could help me out. I haven't interviewed for a job in 8 years and to be quite honest I know it will be nothing like I am going to experience tomorrow. What can I expect? I received and email confirmation of the two gentlemen that will be conducting the interview. One is the IT Director, and the other is a Senior Network Admin. I have been researching the company and I am knowledgeable about what they do and how long they have been in business. Below I have the info about the position. Can you help me out so I can be as prepared as possible for this?

[FONT=&amp] Position Summary:[/FONT]

[FONT=&amp]The IT - Help Desk Support Technician position is responsible for ongoing technical support of hardware, Windows 7, Microsoft Office Suite 2010, printing, network connectivity, desktop/server applications, and general network operations. Under the direction of the Director - IT, this role has the primary responsibility of execution of ongoing issue resolution processes in various IT environments - including end user training and documentation related to help desk issues. [/FONT]

[FONT=&amp]Overview of Essential Duties / Functions:[/FONT]
· Provide production support locally and remotely including:
[FONT=&amp]o [/FONT]Support and troubleshooting of Windows OS, MS Office, Office Communicator, Smart Phones, Wi-Fi Devices, Productivity Software, Desk Phones, Printers, and Network File Shares
[FONT=&amp]o [/FONT]Track and communicate production support issue status – utilizing SharePoint Database
[FONT=&amp]o [/FONT]Computer deployment and support
· Assist in Patch Management for local Laptops and Desktops
· Coordinate Desktop/Laptop/Printer maintenance with Contracting Firm/s
· Work with the IT Staff and key business partners involved in design, development, testing, and implementation of IT related business initiatives
· Perform computer imaging and configuration
· Assist in Desktop and Network Security measures
· Other IT related duties as required

[FONT=&amp]Education / Experience:[/FONT]
  • [FONT=&amp]Associates degree in an IT related field of study and/or High school diploma/equivalent plus equivalent experience and training in an IT Support role[/FONT]

[FONT=&amp]Personal Characteristics:[/FONT]
·[FONT=&amp]Will work with various teams, but has the ability to work independently and prioritize tasks to meet project deadlines[/FONT]
·[FONT=&amp]Must be a people person with well-developed interpersonal and communication skills[/FONT]
·[FONT=&amp]An innate ability to get along with diverse personalities; tactful, mature, patient and flexible[/FONT]
·Hi -high energy level, comfortable performing multifaceted projects in conjunction with normal activities, well organized, and possesses strong analytical and reasoning abilities
Currently studying for CCNA R&S

Comments

  • ande0255ande0255 Banned Posts: 1,178
    What I have been told by hiring managers for help desk level positions, is when they ask technical questions, they are more looking for a general comprehension of proper troubleshooting from candidates.

    For example, someone says my computer won't turn on, and you are troubleshooting it remotely - what do you do?

    Check the power cord is plugged, try another cable, make sure the monitor isn't just powered off, etc.

    Users cant get to the internet, what do you do? Ping 127.0.0.1 to make sure NIC is good, confirm ip is in right subnet and right gateway via ipconfig, ping gateway, etc.

    They probably won't expect you to know everything with minimal experience, just keep your cool, so you can compose thoughtful answers.
  • ande0255ande0255 Banned Posts: 1,178
    To add to that, I might write down a list of scenarios like printer not working, user not receiving email, and think through how you'd troubleshoot it while trying not to use google at first - then once you write down your answers google your made up issue to see if you were on the right track.

    And prepare a good response to "Tell us about yourself", I hated getting caught off guard with that one in my earlier interviews in life.
  • jws86jws86 Member Posts: 77 ■■□□□□□□□□
    What about the dreaded question, Tell us about your biggest weakness? I read so many things online about how to answer this question. I have sat down and thought about what my weaknesses are and I don't feel that I have any weaknesses that would actually prevent me from performing at this position the way they would want me to.

    I can answer the tell us about yourself question pretty easily. I have things and experiences from my past that are not specifically job related that I can bring up to induce some relaxed conversation during the interview. I used to live in Australia for instance. I was born in the United States and moved to Australia for 4 years. This always seems to strike conversation with people and seems to fascinate people as I am back in the states now.
    Currently studying for CCNA R&S
  • jvrlopezjvrlopez Member Posts: 911 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Spin that question into a positive.

    For example, "My greatest weakness is that I work/study/go out of my way too much for my own good sometimes."
    And so you touch this limit, something happens and you suddenly can go a little bit further. With your mind power, your determination, your instinct, and the experience as well, you can fly very high. ~Ayrton Senna
  • jws86jws86 Member Posts: 77 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Well this is actually true of my life at the moment. I am extremely busy at my current job, working 10 hour days + Saturday's for 8 hours, on top of attending school Mon-thurs nights. I constantly have my head in the books, or I'm at work or attending school. I want to be dedicated to my future and career, but I could find a way to spend more personal time with my wife and daughter. Would something like that be a good response?
    Currently studying for CCNA R&S
  • ande0255ande0255 Banned Posts: 1,178
    My answer to the greatest weakness question is saying "I sometimes feel like I bite off more work than I can chew if there is heavy work loads, but I feel I work best under pressure, and it has helped me with prioritizing the issues I am working and organizing my time to handle the work."

    That's like saying you are at your best when you work your ass off, and finish off the statement with a double whammy of selling your efficiency because of it. Similar to the above, but if you want an exact statement to recite, that statement above has always gotten very good feedback from the interviewer icon_thumright.gif

    One question I've heard in almost every interview is "How do you handle stress?" That is a lot trickier than it may sound to give a 'good' answer, eventually my default answer became "Take a quick breather to talk chat with my team and clear my mind", and I think that is a pretty good answer as it implies you enjoy the people in your team.

    Another is "Tell me about a time that you've had a conflict with a coworker, and how you resolved it", and this one can really kick you in the coin purse if your not prepared for it, as you can't really say you've never had a problem with another coworker. I usually refer back to some lazy coworker as I've ran into a few of those, and explained that I would involve them more in my work, asking them if they can assist me with some of my extra work load because my greatest weakness is working too hard :)

    And the list goes on and on, I'll end my rant there.
  • markulousmarkulous Member Posts: 2,394 ■■■■■■■■□□
    It sounds like an entry-level job, which you could end up grabbing. If they throw out a question for an issue that you have no clue what to say, say something like this, "I have not had the chance to work with that issue yet, but first I'd start by collecting as much data as possible. Is their an error message? Is it affecting multiple users? etc. I'd then Google the message and see if there's a clear path to resolution and if not, or it's not something I'm comfortable with, I'd reach out to a lead/supervisor and pick their brain with the information I've gathered." It may sound dumb or generic, but they will be impressed by this since it shows that you're willing to make an attempt and at the very least gather information for the next level of support.

    Depending on the company, I think they will be a lot more worried about your soft-skills. Those are much hard to teach than technical skills. There is some good advice here already. Just anything they ask you, spin it positively. Preach to them about how important customer service is too.
  • Justin WeeksJustin Weeks Member Posts: 9 ■□□□□□□□□□
    1) Keep all answers positive
    2) Spin weaknesses into strengths
    3) When answering technical questions, show that you possess troubleshooting skills by explaining your thought process.
    4) Don't freak about getting technical questions "right" but, attempt the question and if you don't know the answer, explain so gracefully and explain how you would solve it in the real world(google,colleague, supervisor, stackexchange, etc.)
    5) At the entry level most managers have the following concerns:
    a) They need to make sure you're not an idiot
    b) Want to make sure your presence won't affect the team negatively
    c) You know when you need to ask for help
    d) You have a good attitude (Personality can't be trained)

    I figured I would leave the most important to last. We all started somewhere (including the interviewers), If you're polite, friendly, show that you're willing to learn and can build a rapport with the interviewer on a personal level, you will get the job.
  • jws86jws86 Member Posts: 77 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Thank you for all the responses! You all have provided me with valuable information that makes me more confident for 4pm today. Especially the last two posts have cleared up some concerns I had about not knowing some of the technical stuff. Now I know how to respond to the questions that I am not familiar with. This is an entry level position, and I think they could see from my resume I don't have the any actual technical experience besides what I have done in school. I believe they will be looking more into my personal skills and my ability to communicate effectively and problem solve if need be. Thanks for all the help!
    Currently studying for CCNA R&S
  • jvrlopezjvrlopez Member Posts: 911 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Good luck on the interview today!

    Be confident, you got it!
    And so you touch this limit, something happens and you suddenly can go a little bit further. With your mind power, your determination, your instinct, and the experience as well, you can fly very high. ~Ayrton Senna
  • scaredoftestsscaredoftests Security +, ITIL Foundation, MPT, EPO, ACAS, HTL behind youMod Posts: 2,752 Mod
    Ask alot of questions.
    Never let your fear decide your fate....
  • TByrd450TByrd450 Member Posts: 65 ■■□□□□□□□□
    I have an interview coming up May 7. I am still in high school and it is for a summer job doing IT work for a contractor that won the bid. Any idea so what I can expect. I have read the above and it all sounds great, but will the questions still be the same since I'm only 15. Will they "baby" me or will I be treated like an adult?
  • scaredoftestsscaredoftests Security +, ITIL Foundation, MPT, EPO, ACAS, HTL behind youMod Posts: 2,752 Mod
    All depends on how you act. Of course, there will be some people who might just treat you like scum. Rise above that.
    Never let your fear decide your fate....
  • jws86jws86 Member Posts: 77 ■■□□□□□□□□
    So I had the interview, and I think it went extremely well. It lasted about 55 minutes. It was pretty casual. A lot of chit chat. I asked a lot of questions about the specific job. They gave me the freedom right from the get go to ask questions during the interview. I asked quite a few after everything had pretty much finished up as well. I didn't get asked about my biggest weakness. So I was glad to not have to answer that. The network admin asked me 3 tech questions. They weren't difficult but one of them I didn't have any experience with and I told him that. I told him that I would look to another co-worker for help or to an immediate supervisor because I'm not afraid to ask for help when I need it. They seemed satisfied with my other answers. They told me right up front that I will be training for 1.5 to 2 months. Then I will be on my own at the location the specific position is for. The company expanded to a 106,000 sq ft facility a year ago and they have no IT on staff currently. I will be the only one until they hire more. The assured me that support was only a phone call away, or just a short drive to the actual place I was interviewing. All in all I think it went extremely well. I let my personality shine, we laughed and joked a bit and everyone seemed very comfortable. They promote from within and value their employees growth, they provide tuition reimbursement and help obtaining certs. The network admin started out as the first help desk analyst at that location 5 years ago and is now the senior network admin. It is everything I am looking for an more in a job. The hours are kind of funny it will be 4am to 12pm, as I will be providing remote support to global locations in India and the UK on top of the local support at the facility of 12 computers and 31 employees that all have their own laptops and cell phones. The position has opened due to the time difference at their global locations, they were waiting on the other support technicians to arrive at 8am for support. They want to eliminate the time lapse. I was told at the end that they have 2 more interviews set up next week and they are finished. The IT manager assured me not to worry if I do not hear anything from them next week because they wouldn't make a decision until the network admin got back from 3 days out of the office Wed-Fri. I will be sending a thank you email on Monday to them both. What do you guys think?
    Currently studying for CCNA R&S
  • jvrlopezjvrlopez Member Posts: 911 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Sounds like it went good!

    From my experience, if the interview had not gone well, further details of the job will not be elaborated upon.

    If you feel like you did a good job during the interview and had a good feeling from the interviewers, you should be alright for now!
    And so you touch this limit, something happens and you suddenly can go a little bit further. With your mind power, your determination, your instinct, and the experience as well, you can fly very high. ~Ayrton Senna
  • Justin WeeksJustin Weeks Member Posts: 9 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Congratulations on the successful interview! Don't forget a thank you letter (mailed by snail mail). Reel that job in!
  • jws86jws86 Member Posts: 77 ■■□□□□□□□□
    I was actually going to send an email to both of the interviewers. One of my instructors at my college has been helping me out a lot with the job search process. I was emailing him about this specific job. He is a DBA for the city we live in. He forwarded me a thank you letter he has used in the past to email to them. What do you all think about this letter? I like to get a lot of different opinions on things. Is there anything you would add or take out in the letter? Thanks for all the help. Between all the responses on here, my instructor and my fathers advice before the interview I went in feeling very confident and I think I nailed it.

    Dear (Insert name of Person you are emailing. IE...Mrs Johnson)
    I just wanted to thank you, and the rest of the staff, for the opportunity to interview for the (INSERT POSITION TITLE) position last (INSERT THE DAY YOU INTERVIEWED. IE FRIDAY). I appreciate the time I was given to show you why I believe I am a great candidate for the position. Meeting with everyone has absolutely affirmed my interest in working for (INSERT COMPANY NAME). I'm looking forward to hearing back from you in the next few weeks.


    Sincerely,
    (INSERT YOUR NAME)
    Currently studying for CCNA R&S
  • jws86jws86 Member Posts: 77 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Also, about the thank you letter. I would have to send the email to the hr lady that I set up the interview with. I interviewed with two different people. Should I address a thank you to both of them in one letter or each one individually? Sending an actual letter through the mail would allow me to address one for each of the two gentlemen? Or should I just email her one letter for both, or one for each? I actually remember from the interview they both made a joke about how they like electronic forms of things. I offered a hard copy of my resume and references after the interview was over and they willingly accepted them. However they were both using ipads during the interview and they made the joke about not liking paper. So possibly emailing would be the better route?
    Currently studying for CCNA R&S
  • jws86jws86 Member Posts: 77 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Anyone have one last bit of advice to help me out? I want to send these thank you emails tomorrow. I will send a personalized one to each guy. Should the letters be sent as attachments in an email to the hr lady asking her to forward them, or just type them in an email?
    Currently studying for CCNA R&S
  • coreyb80coreyb80 Member Posts: 640 ■■■■■□□□□□
    Send the emails to each individual to keep it simple.
    WGU BS - Network Operations and Security
    Estimated completion: November 2021
  • XyroXyro Member Posts: 623
    Yes, send the letters individually. Type them into the body of the email and do not send them as an attachments.

    icon_exclaim.gif Also, remember while you're waiting to keep applying to other positions. icon_exclaim.gif
  • jws86jws86 Member Posts: 77 ■■□□□□□□□□
    I sent the emails off this morning to the hr lady asking her to forward them on to the specific person. Would you expect a response from the hr girl that she did in fact forward them or just assume she did?
    Currently studying for CCNA R&S
  • jvrlopezjvrlopez Member Posts: 911 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I'd say it's lower on her list of to do things.

    Nice touch though!
    And so you touch this limit, something happens and you suddenly can go a little bit further. With your mind power, your determination, your instinct, and the experience as well, you can fly very high. ~Ayrton Senna
  • jws86jws86 Member Posts: 77 ■■□□□□□□□□
    jvrlopez wrote: »
    I'd say it's lower on her list of to do things.

    Nice touch though!

    Yeah I figured as much haha. I just wish I knew if the letters actually got to the guys they were supposed to get to. Would it be worth calling her and asking if she received the emails? Or would I then be a pest?
    Currently studying for CCNA R&S
  • scaredoftestsscaredoftests Security +, ITIL Foundation, MPT, EPO, ACAS, HTL behind youMod Posts: 2,752 Mod
    That would be a pest. Send out more resumes in the meantime...
    Never let your fear decide your fate....
  • jws86jws86 Member Posts: 77 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Understood. Problem is in my area the help desk jobs are very limited. I scan the job boards daily. I have applied elsewhere but no responses. It only took this company a week to call after I submitted my resume. I have had my resume submitted elsewhere for weeks with no response.
    Currently studying for CCNA R&S
  • scaredoftestsscaredoftests Security +, ITIL Foundation, MPT, EPO, ACAS, HTL behind youMod Posts: 2,752 Mod
    I have been there. Then, all of the sudden they all call at once.
    Never let your fear decide your fate....
  • jws86jws86 Member Posts: 77 ■■□□□□□□□□
    I hope that's the case. Although I really want this position I just interviewed for. It pays higher starting wage than most of them I have applied for and there is more responsibility than just answering phones all day.
    Currently studying for CCNA R&S
  • scaredoftestsscaredoftests Security +, ITIL Foundation, MPT, EPO, ACAS, HTL behind youMod Posts: 2,752 Mod
    Well, hopefully they will call. I know it's hard to wait....patience is not my virtue. LOL
    Never let your fear decide your fate....
  • jws86jws86 Member Posts: 77 ■■□□□□□□□□
    So the IT Director of the company that was in the interview has viewed my linked in profile for the second time. I'm taking this as a good sign since we are not connected. At least they are still thinking about me and making the effort to put my name in a search box. Haha this is my first professional interview. So nerve wracking waiting!
    Currently studying for CCNA R&S
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