These days even getting an interview for a company or graduate scheme can feel like an achievement. But once you have got your foot in the door and have the chance to meet face-to-face, it’s critical you make the most of it.

It is vital to have significant knowledge about the organisation that you are attempting to join, so you can make a good impression in the eyes of your potential employer.

With increasing levels of competition, your research should not just come from a quick Google search. Instead it’s now more important to search wider and dig deeper to make sure you know the company from top to bottom.

Understand the company’s strengths

The good news is that most companies will not be shy about letting people know about their strengths, a lot of their marketing will be based around them and it will be all over their website or personal blog.

However, if you want to dig a little deeper, make a list of the businesses competitors and discover what makes them different from each other and target their unique selling points. Try and answer the question: ‘what are they doing to make themselves better than everyone else?’

It may be selling at a cheaper price, or providing a better quality of customer care service, but it is essential information that can be incredibly impressive.

Learn about the culture

Start thinking about what the company values – is their social media feed just about promotion or are they interacting with customers? Does the company receive many complaints on social media? Make notes of all the positive information you can find and think about how it affects the business.

If you want to dig deeper, try and talk to a previous or current employee, get in touch on LinkedIn or Twitter, and ask them if they can tell you a bit more about life within the company.

Think about finances

Obviously you do not want to start talking about the companies inner finances, but knowing about their health and what the future of the business may look like, can help you going forward.

It is up to you to interpret numbers, but being able to speak in an insightful manner about where the company is heading in the future, whilst using facts and figures, is likely to impress a potential employer – particularly if you can provide them with further ways of boosting business.

If you’re a graduate looking to kick-start your career, have a chat with Discovery Graduates and see how they can help get you started.