Excerpted from the Australia Career Guide
Interviews in Australia can vary widely in terms of formality—there is rarely a set structure, so an applicant should be prepared for an informal chat, a semi-formal interview with two or more interviewers, or a formal interview with a panel of interviewers.
In preparing for an interview, it is helpful to understand the company’s philosophy, market strategy and plans for future growth. It is important to visit the organization’s website and read its marketing material, especially the latest annual report. This will help the applicant to demonstrate how well matched he/she is to the company.
Job interviewing in Australia is generally informal, with few guidelines. Although business in Australia is conducted in an open and informal environment, jobseekers should always be professional and show courtesy and respect. Business in Sydney and Melbourne tends to be conducted with a bit more formality than in other Australian cities (e.g., Perth and Brisbane). Thus, it is best to take a formal approach to all interviews in Australia. Respect and a reserved demeanor should always be a priority, since Australians dislike arrogance. This demeanor should extend to any administrative or junior staff met in advance of the formal interview, such as the receptionist, as impoliteness to key team members such as these is very poorly thought of in Australia.
Jobseekers should be prepared to answer a variety of questions. Many Australian employers will try to assess the applicant’s ability to respond quickly, asking hypothetical questions that require improvisation. Interviewers in Australia will often ask process-related questions, known as the behavioral interviewing technique as described briefly above (e.g., "Tell me about a situation where you have had to be proactive," or, "Explain how you resolved a situation with a difficult client."). This is because they are generally looking for evidence the applicant can follow the appropriate processes to resolve a situation.
A follow-up email or letter is appropriate after the interview, thanking the interviewer for the opportunity. Not only is this polite, but it also helps remind the interviewer about the jobseeker and his/her qualifications. Any correspondence should be addressed to the interviewer personally including name and title, company name, street or post office address, state and postal code, and country. Dates should be noted in the format day/month/year. British spellings are considered more authoritative than US spellings, but a combination of the two is common practice.
This is just a short sample of what you’ll find in over 100 pages of information in the Australia Guide.