What are the types of job interviews that you should as a job seeker?
As someone who is job hunting, it is only expected that you acquaint yourself with the different types of interviews that you might likely experience.
There is a myriad of interviews and different companies employ different manners in ensuring they get the best candidate(s).
There is no particular guideline as to how an organization should conduct their interviews as it is peculiar to what the organization is looking out for in a candidate and the mode of position/job that is on the table.
Its is noteworthy to note, however, that each style of interviews comes with its own ‘baggage’ of pros and cons, none is the perfect fit tailored for accepting candidates.
Therefore, the mode of interview chosen should be based on different factors such as considerations, the industry, business style, the urgency or lack of it and the advertised position.
The main thing is finding what works best for the organization at that point in time because what works at a point might not work at another time, also, those conducting the interviews might be different and what worked for a set might not work for another.
In this article, the general types of interviews that are applicable to any organization regardless of their modus operandi or their style of operation will be discussed explicitly.
Now that you know the type of interviews that exists, let’s dive into each one of them. We will take about what you need to know about each of them and how to pass it.
A panel interview is a type of interview includes two or more interviewers in the room and the candidate or interviewee present. The panel members are carefully selected by the organization and mostly covers personnel from different departments or unit of the organization with the upper echelons and an individual from the unit advertised taking priority.
The main advantage of this type of interview is that it does not leave any space for personal biases and/or favouritism. To this effect, each individual on the panel is able to make detailed analysis of the candidate and make an informed decision, during this interview, each member is able to pick on the characteristics, flaws, skills, strengths and other traits of the candidate easily and as a team reach a fair conclusion.
This type of interview is mostly used when; interviewing for a top position, the last stage of the appointment process and the need for multiple interviewers.
Due to its characteristic of having more than one person conducting the interview, its timing is longer than others but in all, it shouldn’t take more than 40-45 minutes, this should suffice to determine if the candidate will be suitable for the position or not.
Other advantages are; multiple interviewers giving a greater chance of fair conclusion, weakness of any interviewer is covered, the powers-that-be are in attendance in one sitting thereby giving the result an authentic quality, etc.
The disadvantages are; risk of disagreement or conflict due to varying interest and preference, it could affect the morale of the candidate, etc.
It is important to note that for a panel interview, there will always be a lead interviewer who will ‘moderate’ the interview session, this allows for synchronization, ease and more flow and prevents interruption, voice-over or overlaps. The interview is not to compete for who comes across as the most important panel member but it is to achieve a particular goal; picking the most suitable candidate.
This is a type of an interview that is used mostly in the initial process of hiring, it is not so much different from other forms, in fact, it saves both parties much stress, no need to dress up, no fear of being judged verbally or physically.
However, there are important things to note to ensure a telephone interview goes well for both parties. Some organization can schedule the phone interview ahead and some don’t, it depends on what the organization is looking for. Whatever the case is, the candidate must be ready anytime, however, if such candidate is caught unawares or he/she is in a noisy place, it is advisable to politely ask for a reschedule. It is also advisable to keep a soft copy of all important documents in case there is a need to refer to them during the interview.
A great advantage of this type of interview is that no time is wasted, it is straight to the point and precise. It is also a great medium to sort out requirements and other logistics before coming in for the final phase of the hiring process. Other advantages are; ability to measure the candidate’s tone of voice, faster than a face-to-face interview, economic, reach long-distance candidates with little or no fuss, opportunity to assess their mode of answering, an insight into the candidate’s personality, helps to do a quick sorting of loads of CVs and there is a need to cut down to those with potential, when there is less time and an urgent need for hiring, for efficiency in interviewing, etc.
It comes highly recommended for positions that demand customer care and relations, it helps the interviewer to measure what the candidate’s communication skill is. Generally, this type of interview takes about 30 minutes with the main body taking up to 20-25 minutes. If it goes longer than that, then it is a good sign that the candidate is engaging.
However, it also has its disadvantages, they are; the unreliability of network signals hereby higher probability of interrupted calls, inability to read the candidate’s body language (non-verbal), building of little or no professional rapport over a call.
This type of interview comes highly recommended to be a prelude to a face-to-face interview, it can also be used as a fact-checking route to ensure the suitability of the candidate before further consideration, e.g. do you know how to drive? It is also important to note that the environment is very important, e.g. make use of cool and noiseless environment and make sure you are not occupied with something else during the interview; both as the interviewer and candidate.
Individual or also known as the face-to-face interview is rated as the most popular and efficient form of assessment in a hiring process. This type of interview affords you the opportunity to get an up-and-close assessment of the candidate, it also gives you the opportunity to measure their body posture and language, it builds and strengthens relationship and boosts clarity of issues. It is mostly used when there are few interviews scheduled for a particular day and encourages both the interviewer and candidate to relax and be free enough to communicate effortlessly. The interviewer always comes prepared and is most likely to be an expert in the field looking to hire someone, therefore, the candidate must not be carried away or lackadaisical but must be well prepared and seasoned in the art of answering.
Every interview especially the individual interview always start up with the introduction phase, therefore, a face interview should not be less than 45 minutes and should not be more than an hour, the candidate must have enough communication skill to be engaging during the interview, he/she must note that this is the final step and is the verification of all presented documents and alleged skills, therefore, such candidates must be up to date in the field of interest. It also is important for the candidate to do his/her own research and arm him/herself with important knowledge about the organization, the specific department and the personnel involved. Candidates are given enough time without interruption – in most cases of the individual interview – to answer extensively any question asked, such candidate, should make judicious use of such time but should also be careful not to divert or leave sentences unfinished. The key point here is to keep the interview interesting and engaging and not come across as anxious, blabbering or a talkative.
Other advantages are; ability to build rapport more easily, access to more, detailed information, a spontaneous test of candidate’s flexibility, critical thinking and commitment, formal setting, access to thorough assessment of the candidate and so on.
It doesn’t also go without its own share of disadvantages, they are; staged performance by both parties, rehearsed questions and answers, time-demanding, a conclusion will be made by one person, interviewer’s method may not be the best, costly and so on. It is also a great avenue to address any issues pertaining to the CV and/ or other important documents or any matter arising from previous or immediate discovery.
This type of interview is a great alternative for a telephone interview, it involves using tools like Skype (which happens to be the most popular), FaceTime, Google Duo, Zoom App (for group video interview) and others. What makes it different from a telephone interview is that it involves seeing each other and the body language – to a certain degree - is able to be accessed and measured, it also gives a level of formality, importance and professionalism and gives no space for other engagements or activities, it also encourages focus.
It also shares similar disadvantages with the telephone interview such as; the weak building of rapport, background noises and distractions, distorted network signal, interruption from other calls, etc.
In same vein, it shares similar advantages with the telephone interview such as; it saves cost, less exertion of effort on both sides, fishing out weaker candidates from an early part of the hiring process, great way of quickly sorting through heaps of CVs to potential Candidates, not time demanding, ability to reach long-distance candidates, ability to gauge reactions and expressions, etc.
It generally takes about 30 minutes if used as a substitute for a telephone interview but due to setting up of equipment and ensuring the communication is clear and there is no distortion of any kind, it can run for an hour. Unlike the telephone interview which doesn’t demand one to look the part, both parties have to dress and look the part (smart and focused).
It is also advisable that both parties have an account with a service provider like skype and has a strong network service provider and strong signal. A computer comes highly recommended for such an interview.
OTHER TYPES OF INTERVIEW WORTHY OF MENTIONING Are; Group Interview, assessment interview, stress interview, portfolio interview, behavioural interview, career fair interview, role acting interview, problem-solving or case interview, lunch/dinner interview to mention but a few.
No matter the type of interview chosen, the main factors necessary to be present are;
Good luck to both parties!