Job interviews in Britain have become more difficult since the recession says research findings conducted by Randstad, a specialist recruitment company. Job seekers have just the one chance to impress prospective employers in job interviews. Second chances are few and far; and with little to no margin for errors.

Just over 40 percent of employees say that job interviews today are significantly more unnerving than they were eight years ago; while more than 30 percent of candidates (formerly experienced job interviewees) acknowledge they are rusty on good interview skills when meeting recruiters.

Job applicants across the age spectrum are finding job interviews daunting. More than 35 percent of respondents older than 45 saw themselves as ill prepared when it came to facing job interviews; this may be due to the fact that these job seekers have been in the same job for lengthy periods of time. This is compared to 23 percent of respondents in the 18-24 year old bracket who similarly feel inadequate for the way in which interviews are conducted today.

There are contributing factors for the high number of job applicants being overwhelmed at attending an interview. These include shortage of new opportunities and the need to hold onto jobs during the recession.

How important is it to ace an interview?

Randstad's study found that 57 percent of job seekers were given only one chance of getting it right to secure available positions. A low 19 percent of job seekers were given two interviews to impress prospective employers. These sobering statistics place emphasis on the need for interviewees to make a good first impression.

In the changing face of recruitment processes, the convenience and easy access to desktop and pre-interview research on candidates through social media is on the rise. Now more than ever is the need to exert caution when it comes to your behaviour on digital social platforms. Instant information should work to both sides advantage, as prospective job seekers have access to important information about the company they are interviewing at.

Information on the company's reputation, company culture and how well current employees enjoy working there can be enormously helpful.

Common job interview no-no's

For many job seekers, being granted a job interview is a life-changing opportunity. The intense pressure of such occasions does result in an alarmingly large number of interviewees bungling up their interviews, mistakes that are a given that you should avoid making. The study found that:

  • two-fifths of employees talked to disclosed that their mind had gone blank in a job interview situation
  • over a fifth of participants in the study admitted that they had been ill-prepared for their interviews
  • despite being on time for interviews being the number one golden rule, almost one in ten candidates professed to being late for an interview

Other eye-brow raising job interview faux pas made by interviewees were ill-placed humour, exhibiting arrogance and causing offence.

When asked what would improve the normally stress-inducing interview process, respondents marked down a number of suggestions. Some of them were:

· being better prepared

· receiving guidance on how to respond to technical and competency-based questions

· being given practical interview advice such as appropriate wear

· deeper knowledge of the prospective employer

What the study's findings suggest to job seekers entering the job market today is - prepare better and prepare well. Recruitment companies can play their role in giving job applicants a distinct advantage to make a positive strong impression at the first go. Recruiters having dealt with the company will have first-hand knowledge to impart on the specifics of the role and what the type of candidate most suited for it.