A big percentage of people is scared of job interviews. Unfortunately, if you wanna get a job, you cannot escape a job interview. There are many different kinds of jobs, thus there are different competency sets employers are looking for from candidates (depending on what the candidate is applying for). To look for this competency sets a job interview greatly helps achieve that goal (aside from your CV or resume). As such, there are different types of job interviews accompanied by various methods and techniques.
Here is the list of the eight types of job interviews every candidate must know:
Screening interviews are conducted to “weed out” applicants who are not qualified for the job. This is kind of job interview is usually done when there is a large pool of applicants. This type of interview is convenient when there is a large pool of applicants. Generally, screening interviews are done by phone, and tend to be very brief. The questions typically asked in screening interviews are basic qualification questions,
Phone interviews are used in circumstances when the interviewee cannot be physically present in the interview venue due to geographic obstacles (say the applicant lives in another country). Although screening interviews utilise the phone to conduct interviews, a phone interview is much longer and detailed than a screening interview done by phone.
Tips when answering a phone interview:
- As much as possible, avoid conducting phone interviews in public areas, or in a vehicle, in order to avoid any accident and so that you could focus;
- If possible, use a landline to avoid cellular service interruptions or poor reception.
- Ask your family members and friends not to disturb you once the call has begun
- Do not eat, surf the web, or text during the interview. Focus!
Phone interviews are spontaneous, they are not scheduled in advance. Anticipate that the interviewer will just call you. When they call and you’re not in the best condition or situation to conduct the interview, ask the interviewer to reschedule the interview in a more convenient time. They will understand.
A one-on-one interview involves you (the interviewee) and the interviewer only, and is conducted in a private room. This is in fact the most common type of interview.
Dress, behave, and speak appropriately. Build your rapport with the interviewer. Always answer questions politely, and be honest.
Panel interviews, as the name suggests, involves a panel that is usually composed of the members of the selection committee, or personnel board (or whatever name they call it) and then you. In a panel interview, you will be interviewed by several people all at the same time.
For employers, a panel interview is the most efficient way because in effect it allows them to conduct many interviews all at one. Now, the challenge for you as an interviewee is to connect with each of the member of the panel and interact with all of them (not just the one asking you) throughout the interview.
- Always bring extra copies of your CV or resume, give them a copy before the interview starts;
- If possible, secure the business cards of the members of the panel and send them a thank you note after the interview.
- Ask questions, too, especially when at the end of the interview, you are asked if you have questions. Go, ask politely.
Serial interviews involves a series of interviews with different interviewers usually done throughout the day. After the first person interview you, you will be passed on to the the next person, and so forth. You bet it’s tiring!
Lunch or dinner interviews are usually unstructured, and spontaneous. This type of interview primarily evaluates your social skills and manner. If you have you table etiquette course, now is the time to refresh your memory.
Group interviews involve one interviewer and several interviewees or candidates; somehow the exact opposite of a panel interview. An interviewer would typically throw a question to the group addressed to no particular person. The interviewer anticipates an emergent leader from the group to answer the question first. Nonetheless, group interviews are rarely used due to it’s not so ineffective results.
Stress interviews are common among law schools admission, or pre-law or law organisations in the university. In the job sector, it is now considered ineffective and antiquated. But there are a few employers still using this method.
The rationale behind stress interviews is to see how a candidate manages himself under immense stress or pressure. The exertion of stress or pressure may be in the form of off-the-wall questions, non sequitur argumentations from the interviewers, or deliberately placing the candidate in an awful place, literally and figuratively.
Never be afraid of job interviews. If you are called for another interview, do not worry, instead be glad because you are a step closer to getting the job. Remember Abraham Maslow’s words of wisdom: “In any given moment we have two options: to step forward or to step back into safety.” So, step up and nail it!
Macan, T. (2009). The employment interview: A review of current studies and directions for future research. Human Resource Management Review, 19(3), pp.203-218.
USC, C. (2015). The Interview – Different Types. 1st ed. [ebook] Los Angeles, California: USC.
Success.uwo.ca, (2005). Types of Interviews. [online]