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Job hunting anxiety? Try these 9 tips from our recruitment consultants

How GatenbySanderson support candidate’s mental health during the recruitment process


We know from the thousands of candidates we support every year that job hunting, interviewing and the recruitment process can be a burden on mental health. With this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week focusing on anxiety, our consultants David, Chantelle, Alison, Michelle and Eleanor are sharing their top tips for reducing anxiety wherever possible throughout your job search:

1. Reach out to us early in the process

Speak to the recruiter early in the process and work with them to help craft your application. They understand the role and what the client is looking for, so let them advise you throughout the process. Less surprises means less anxiety!

2. You can let us know you’re feeling anxious

Some candidates might feel compelled to hide their anxiety as they don’t want it to impact any perception of capability for a role. We welcome people to be open as we want to help you be your best throughout the process and we’re genuinely committed to supporting mental wellbeing. We’ll treat anything you share confidentially, and sensitively.

3. Send us drafts

We’re always happy to review draft CVs and supporting statements before you send your final submission, so don’t hesitate to ask.

4. See the preliminary interview as the foundation for support

We are here to support candidates at all stages but the preliminary interview is an important precursor to the additional support we will provide you. It allows us to do this in a meaningful way and can also help us support you beyond a process in the event you are unsuccessful – we keep candidates in mind for other roles and use learnings from earlier unsuccessful processes to help you through the next one.

5. Make sure you spend time preparing

Being prepared will give you the confidence to perform well at interview.  One of the best tools is the STAR technique (framing your response using the Situation, Task, Action and Result). The key thing to remember in the STAR technique is it’s a bit like a sandwich with a lot of filling.  Make sure your “A” for action is the filling and is really detailed and informative.  Remember, these people don’t know you, so you need to spell out to them what you did and how you did it.

6. We can test your tech with you

If you will be presenting via Teams or Zoom we are happy to test your technology and how to share your screen in advance, by doing a trial run with you. Even if you think you know how, doing a trial run can ease the anxiety in the minutes leading up to and at the start of an interview.

7. We’ll brief you fully

In advance of a final interview, you will be fully briefed by a Consultant at GS.  This will include information on the people you will be meeting and general advice on how to approach the presentation and interview, in addition to answering any questions you may have.  Hopefully setting the scene and helping you to understand a little about the characters you will be meeting will put you at ease.

8. Interviewers want you to do your best

Remember, your interviewer is there to support you to do your best. If you need to take a minute to formulate a response to a question or gather your thoughts, if you wish to skip a question and return to it later, or if you need a question to be re-phrased or clarified, don’t hesitate to ask. Your interviewer will do their best to support you.

9. We are available on the day.

On the day of a final interview, typically a Consultant from GS will be present to support you. Sometimes seeing a friendly face can make all the difference.



As a candidate, your mental health is incredibly important to all of us at GS, as well as our clients. We’re always willing to discuss how we can support you best.

If you suffer with anxiety this can be classified as a disability and we will support with any reasonable adjustments that you require.  Even if you don’t identify as having a disability, it is still worth exploring with us any adjustments to the process that you believe will enable you to be the best version of yourself.

Please ask any of the team you’re in contact with, we’ll be more than happy to discuss with you.


Thanks to David Ward, Chantelle Harris, Alison Elton, Michelle Atkinson and Eleanor Pugh for their tips and advice.

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