Why Are Interviews Important
A job interview is important for a number of reasons, as it can benefit both the hiring manager and the company as well as the potential candidate being interviewed. Interviewing candidates ensures you are hiring only the most qualified individuals for the open position. Without an effective interview process, you may end up hiring a person who is not the right fit for the company, the position or both.
Additional benefits of the job interview process include:
It allows both parties to learn more about each other and determine the suitability of the job for the candidate.
It enables the hiring manager to ask the interviewee important questions pertaining to their qualifications, skills and experience levels.
It gives the interviewer a chance to ask more in-depth questions that the candidate’s application did not answer.
It can prevent a company from wasting time and money on a candidate who is not the right fit for a position.
Most job positions require at least one interview, while some companies will ask candidates to go through multiple interviews before a selection is made. Regardless of the position, nearly all organizations can benefit from conducting interviews to fill open jobs.
Talking Only To One Person
Many interviews have two or more interviewers in the room, and ignoring certain people in the interview committee can ruin your chance of landing the job. Be sure to address every person conducting the interview, making eye contact and speaking directly to them in turn. Many job candidates tend to only address the highest-ranking person in the room, which comes across as rude.
Know Who You’re Meeting
Finding out how many people youre likely to be meeting and who they are can help reduce your nerves too. Knowing if its a one-to-one meeting or a panel format can affect the way you prepare, for example. And if you find out a bit about the people youre to meet for instance, by looking at their LinkedIn profiles you can get a flavour of the sort of questions theyre likely to ask, as well as develop ideas for interesting small talk to help you build rapport with them.
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How To Ask For An Update After The Interview
Itâs important to figure out how to ask about interview status through email. The company has little incentive to reach out to you. This means that if you want information you have to ask for it, and itâs up to you to reach out in the way that will receive the best response.
With that in mind, here are some tips for asking for an interview update:
Research The Company And Show What You Know
Do your homework and research the employer and the industry, so you are ready for the interview question, “What do you know about this company?” If this question is not asked, you should try to demonstrate what you know about the company on your own.
You can do this by tying what youve learned about the company into your responses. For example, you might say:
I noticed that when you implemented a new software system last year, your customer satisfaction ratings improved dramatically. I am well-versed in the latest technologies from my experience with developing software at ABC, and appreciate a company who strives to be a leader in its industry.
You should be able to find out a lot of information about the companys history, mission and values, staff, culture, and recent successes on its website. If the company has a blog and a social media presence, they can be useful places to look, too.
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Email Sample : Responding To And Accepting A Face
Next, if youve been invited to meet in person, you can use this template to set up a day and finalize everything!
Thank you for getting back to me. Id love to come in and have the interview. Is this a full-day interview? Or how many hours should I set aside?
Im available Monday Thursday, 7:00 am 2:00 pm Central Time.
Thanks, and I look forward to hearing from you.
Best regards, Your name
This is a basic structure for responding to the company, but you can also add other details/questions as needed. For example, if you want to ask for the names of the people youll be meeting with, or the number of people youll be meeting, thats a good idea. If you need help finding the company location for a face-to-face interview, you can ask if they have instructions for arriving, too.
However, I like to get the scheduling sorted out first, and then ask other questions. Thats why I kept the email template above dead-simple. Take it one step at a time, and youll avoid confusion and complicated emails.
So Id recommend using the sample email above, and then ask further questions once a day and time is set!
Prepare For The Type Of Interview
Interviews can be conducted in different formats and settings. Knowing what kind of interview to expect can help you enter the meeting feeling more prepared and confident. Some interview formats that differ from the traditional one-on-one meeting include:
Arrive a few minutes before your interviewer for a lunch or dinner interview. Browse through the restaurant menu online before arriving, and learn about what type of restaurant you’ll be visiting to determine how you should dress.
Phone and video interviews
Find a quiet room where you won’t be interrupted to do the interview. Make sure the technology you will be using works efficiently, and practice using it before the interview.
A group interview is when a panel of people interviews you. It could also be an interview with a group of candidates. Besides practicing your answers to common questions, it will also help to practice your listening skills before going into this type of interview.
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Prepare For The Worst
Whatever your biggest fear is, theres always an answer for it. Lettuce in your teeth? Pack a compact mirror and floss in your bag . Worried about not having a good response to a tricky question? Be proactive and learn how to cover your tracks when you dont know an answer. By thinking ahead, you can truly rest assured knowing that even if the worst happens, youre more than ready to handle it.
Sit Up And Dress Professionally
Even though youre not meeting your interviewer in person, make sure to dress for success and sit up straight. First impressions matter and your appearance can really make or break yours.
Pro Tip: Dont forget to smile! Whether you are talking to an actual person or recording your answers, smile the way you would during an in-person interview. Wear clothes that are flattering and fit the job you are interviewing for. When in doubt, dress up rather than dress down .
Not only will sitting up and smiling make you look more professional and engagedthey will actually help you feel more powerful and energetic! Good posture makes you feel more confident, puts you in a better mood and communicates openness.
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Types Of Interview Questions
Employers use different types of questions when interviewing. They may be:
- competency-based – the focus is on the things you can do, so youll be asked to give examples to show you have the skills needed for the job
- strengths-based – these explore what you enjoy doing or do well and is used to check things like your practical or teamworking skills, or how you work under pressure
- technical – for jobs in science, IT, engineering, finance or law – they test your job-related knowledge and understanding of work processes
- situational judgement – test how you would react in typical work situations and check things like your ability to solve problems, make decisions or work with others
- values-based – commonly used for health and care jobs, particularly in the NHS, to confirm that you share the values and understand the culture of the organisation
- motivational – these help an employer to see what drives you and to make sure youll fit in with their company
You can find more advice on how to answer common interview questions.
Examples Of Emails Asking For Feedback After An Interview
Dear Ms. Coolname,
It was nice talking to you last week about the Personal Bodyguard of Ronald McDonald position at McDonalds corporate headquarters.
Im sad to hear that you went with a different candidate, but I wanted to thank you for taking the time to talk to me and giving me the opportunity to put my name in the running. Im still very interested in the company, so I hope youll keep my name in mind for any future openings.
In the hopes of having a better shot at the next opportunity with your company, I was wondering if you had any specific feedback about my application that youd be willing to share with me?
Thanks again and all best, Shrek T. Ohgher
Dear Mr. Brown,
Thank you for the chance to interview for the Data Analyst position. I appreciate you informing me of your decision to go another way so quickly.
While I was disappointed I wont have the chance to work for XYZ Company, it was a real treat learning more about your commitment to sustainability and fair trade.
Im still very interested in working for XYZ. If any other roles that suit my skill set come up, please dont hesitate to contact me.
I admire your professionalism and knowledge of the field. If you have the time, could you provide feedback on my interview performance and job application? Id especially be curious about where my technical skills could improve.
Thanks again for your time and give me the chance to interview for the Data Analyst position at XYZ.
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Tips For Confirming A Job Interview
When you schedule a job interview, be sure to confirm the interview location, as well as the date and time. You don’t want to miss the job interview for lack of an accurate address.
If you’re confirming a remote interview, check with the person who scheduled it to confirm. Also, be sure you know what you’re platform you’re using to interview, and you know how to access it.
Write down the correct time and day and put it in the calendar on your phone. Showing up on the wrong day is embarrassing and will make you seem disorganized and unprofessional.
Given how hard it can be to get an interview, it’s important to get all the details right. If you don’t, and you miss the interview, you may not get a second chance. Taking the time to confirm the details will help you avoid interview stress, as well.
As in all your correspondence with the interviewer, be polite and professional. While you want to confirm the details, avoid asking questions that could be easily answered through a quick online search. For instance, don’t request directions to the office if you have the address, you can figure out how to get there on your own.
Learn The Interviewers Name And Use It
Im horrible at remembering names. I always have been. So if I can do this, you can too
When you hear someones name, repeat it to yourself in your head once or twice IMMEDIATELY after you shake hands. This helps you remember it.
Most of the time, if you forget someones name, its because you never really got it. Immediately after you heard it, you forgot. So this is how to remember.
Then, use it in the conversation within the first 5-10 minutes of the interview. Now youll never forget it.
Theres another benefit to this too using someones name helps you build a bond with them and build trust. Studies have shown you seem more confident, competent and impressive when you say someones name when talking to them.
Go talk to the CEO in your company, and I bet theyll use your name in the conversation. Leaders do this. Successful people do this.
This is a very under-rated tip for interview success that anyone can do. It just takes effort.
You will build a stronger bond/rapport with the interviewer if you do this, and theyll be more likely to remember you favorably and hire you.
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Ask For The Interview Format
All firms have different ways of interviewing, so find out what type you should expect. Some will ask brainteasers, case questions or typical interview questions. Most will ask specific questions about the role, and you may need to solve a problem or complete a daily task. Ask the human resources manager what you can expect so you can adequately prepare.
Dont Rush The Decision
Its easy to hear a couple things during the process that make you say, Geez, this place sounds insane! Id better run out of this room before they offer me this terrible job! While you should pay attention to potential issues along the way , its also important not to jump to conclusions based on one or two early-round interviews.
At this point, ask yourself why youve started considering dropping out. In my experience, there are two reasons people initially get to this point: theyve either heard something that rubbed them the wrong way, or theres something deeper going on.
If its the former, take advantage of any future interviews to discuss your concerns with the employer. But if its the latter, take it from mereflect on your motivations for dropping out before you follow through on it. I once canceled an interview the morning I was supposed to meet with the hiring managerall because I was afraid to try something new. In hindsight, that was immature of me and I wish I could take it back.
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Dont Ask For Feedback On The Spot
Ive seen people recommend that you ask for feedback or concerns at the end of the interview. Something like this: Based on what weve discussed, is there any reason you wouldnt consider me for this job? Horrible advice. Never ask this. Ever. Or anything like it.
First of all, they just finished interviewing you. Give them time to think. Youre going to go home and decide whether youre interested, they need time to think too. Dont put them on the spot like this.
Also, youre bringing the negatives to their attention. Youre literally asking them if they can think of a reason thatd stop them from hiring you. Even if they do think of something, they wont tell you for fear of a lawsuit.
I like to say something like this instead: If you need any more info from me or have any questions later, dont hesitate to contact me.
Ways To Get A Job Interview And One Way Not To
CEO, Performance-based Hiring Learning Systems. Author, Hire with Your Head and The Essential Guide for Hiring.
Nowadays, most of the work I do involves helping recruiters and hiring managers find and hire perfect people for imperfect jobs. In the manual I give them I also provide a bunch of countermeasures for candidates to use whenever they meet interviewers who dont follow the steps I recommend. Some of these are highlighted below.
Job Hunting Tip #1: dontapply directly to any job posting. The only exception to this rule is if youre a perfect fit based on the skills, experiences and titles listed on the job description. If youre not a perfect, you shouldnt spend more than 20% of your time applying to jobs. However, if you think you can do the job, even if youre not a perfect match on the requirements listed, there are many things you can do to get an interview. Here are my favorites:
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Ask For The Next Steps
After the interview, it is better to ask your recruiter, hiring manager or interviewer about what you should expect in the following week. They will possibly send you a follow-up email with your interview results and a request for additional requirements like a reference list, an assignment or another interview.
Why Should We Give You This Job
This isnt the most common interview question, but it is still probable that youre asked this question in a job interview. They might also ask you: What are your main skills and strengths or Why do you think youre the best candidate for the role?
It might seem intimidating or you might even feel uncomfortable boasting about yourself, but if you are given the opportunity, go for it!
Your answer should focus on what you offer the company and not the other way round. The company wants to make sure that you are the right person for their firm.
When a company hires a good person, they are making it harder for their competitors to compete with them. Basically, you want to try to answer this question by letting the interviewer know what you can do that other candidates cant. Companies hire people to solve problems so let the interviewer know what problems youve solved and how your employers benefited as a result.
Focus on specific tasks in the job description that are critical to the position and tell the interviewer why you are the person to handle them.
Back your answers up with examples. Anyone can say that they have good organizational skills for example, but if you say something specific e.g. I have excellent organizational skills and in the past 12 months I have personally organized and supervised 6 corporate events with up to 300 participants on each one, you are definitely going to make a better impression than someone giving a generic answer.
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