I have been invited to interview for a lecturer position (AFAIK, equivalent to assistant professor elsewhere) in the UK, after being pre-selected following a Skype interview. This means that the department is probably reasonably interested in me as a prospective hire. I have been a postdoc for 3.5 years now, and this is my first interview at this level.
I also do not have much experience with interviews in general, since I got my PhD position at the first try, and then was offered my postdoc position (I did not interview for it). In the middle I had two other interviews for postdocs that I didn't get, one of which went badly on my part. The other one went well but the position was extremely competitive (1% chance) which makes drawing conclusions difficult.
So I would like to have some pointers from academics who are familiar with the UK system on what to expect and how to best prepare for the interview. The email they sent me asked me to deliver a 30-minute presentation on "your research, enterprise and teaching aspirations at [univeristy name], with the first 5 minutes directed at an Undergraduate audience". Then, there will be a panel interview, followed by tour of the department and lunch. I should add this position puts more emphasis on research than teaching (externally funded).
Specifically, I'm interested in:
- What to focus on during the presentation, e.g., what is a good balance of my past/present research versus future plans
- Should I link the undergradute part to my research topics?
- What kind of content the panel is expecting from me: "research, enterprise and teaching aspirations" sounds a bit vague (perhaps that's intentional?)
- What to expect from the panel interview: technical questions, career plans, ...?
I had the interview, which I think went reasonably well. I found the advice given by the accepted answer to be quite valuable in the end. Things that came up were for example 1) subjects that I can contribute to the teaching portfolio of the department which are not currently taught, 2) what kind of funding I am going to secure to do research, 3) how my research ties in with what current members of the department are researching, 4) why I chose this university/department, 5) some more technical/specific questions about the research project attached to the position (as I said this position is externally funded).
Things that did not come up were salary or REF.
I was offered the position. Unfortunately (or maybe not) I could not accept it because of a mixture of personal and professional reasons.