We use the STAR technique for gathering information during interviews. We will be looking for you to draw upon previous experiences to provide evidence of when you have shown a particular attribute.
It’s important to speak about specific events rather than general terms to quantify your success. This gives your story credibility, and from and interviewer’s perspective, a better gauge of your success. A nameless figure or undefined successes can make the answer feel less convincing.
When we ask a question, in your answer we’ll be looking for the:
- SITUATION you were in, or
- TASK you were completing, and
- the ACTION you took in response to the situation or task, and
- the RESULT of your action.
Situation/Task: describe a situation that you needed to to deliver in.
DO describe a specific event or situation
DO give enough detail for the interviewer to understand the situation
DO use examples from a previous job/volunteer experience/university
DO keep your answers concise.
DON’T give a generalised description of what you’ve done in the past
DON’T ramble! Keep your answers concise.
Action: describe the action you took
DO explain what you did as an individual – not just what the whole team did
DO describe what actually happened – not what you would do in hindsight.
DON’T lose sight of the situation you’re describing; it is easy to get lost in the story!
Result: Fairly self explanatory! How did the situation end?
DO let your interviewer know what happened; positive/negative result
DO Go on to briefly explain what you learned (if negative).
Used at its best, the STAR structure should simply come across as a well-articulated response. Take a look at the job specification and pick out the key responsibilities. You should be able to create a bank of answers in this format in advance, which will help your answers appear seamless, rather than struggling to do it on the day.
Should you need further help and advice looking for your next role do not hesitate to contact us.