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Interview Guidelines, tips — Human Resources

Interview Types

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Screening Interview

This type of interview is generally conducted by larger companies when there is a large applicant pool and is typically the first phase of selection. Screening interviews are used to ensure that the candidates meet minimum requirements and are often conducted by a computer or by an interviewer from the human resources department who is skilled at determining whether there is anything that might disqualify you from the position.

Tips:

• Highlight your qualifications and accomplishments using non-technical language – the HR professional is not necessarily an expert in your field.
• Answer questions clearly and succinctly – personality is not as important at this stage of the process.
• If asked about salary expectations, use a range – make sure you’ve done your homework in this area.
• If conducted by phone, have your resume beside you to refer to for dates and names.

Telephone Interview

Telephone interviews are often used to screen candidates in order to narrow the pool of applicants who will be invited for in-person interviews- and is a good way to minimize travel expenses! They can be challenging because you aren’t able to rely on nonverbal communication or body language. You should prepare for this type of interview just as you would for a regular interview so, if you are not given any warning and are not ready for an interview when called, politely request that the interviewer call back at another mutually convenient time. This will allow you to refresh your memory on the organization and be better prepared.

Tips:

• Have your resume, organization information, points that you want to highlight, and list of questions you may want to ask in front of you – and have a short list of your accomplishments prepared to discuss.
• Although you’re not required to dress up, you may find that it’s easier to get into the ‘interview mindset’ and feel more confident when dressed professionally.
• Have a pen and paper handy to keep notes or write down any questions that come up; keep a glass of water beside you.
• Close the door or ensure you are in a quiet setting to eliminate any potential distractions.
• Speak slowly, enunciate clearly, and vary your voice tone, tempo, and pitch to keep the interviewers attention.
• Provide short answers that make interchange easier on the phone; do not interrupt the interviewer.
• Restate the question if you have not fully heard or understood it.
• Smile – even on the phone it will project a positive image.

Video Conferencing

Video conferencing is typically used to conduct interviews using video technology from a distance. The same interview strategies you would use if you were meeting in person apply – clothing, body language, and dialogue are important.

Tips:

• Depending on the sophistication of the technology, you may experience short transmission delays so be sure to take that into account when you are interacting with the interviewer.
• Make eye contact with the camera, which, to the employer, appears as direct “eye contact.”
• Check the monitor periodically to observe the interviewer’s body language.

One-on-One Interview

The most common interview format is the one-on-one (or face-to-face). This interview is traditionally conducted by a direct supervisor and if often the last step in a series of interviews. The interviewer may or may not be experienced in conducting interviews and, depending on personality and experience, the interview may be directive following a clear agenda, or non-directive relying on you to lead the discussion as you answer open-ended questions.

Tips:

• You will likely be asked a variety of interview questions, so be familiar with all of the different types of questions so that you can adjust your answers appropriately.
• It is important to be thoroughly prepared – know the job and know yourself.

Panel Interview

A panel interview is conducted by two or more interviewers and is designed to reduce individual interviewer bias. It is very common for entrance into graduate and professional schools. One member of the panel may ask all of the questions or individual panel member may take turns.

Tips:

• Make eye contact with the person asking the questions, but also to give every member on the panel your attention, regardless of if they ask any questions at all – treat them all with equal importance.
• Be prepared to extend more energy in this setting, as you need to be alert and responding to more people

Group Interview

A group interview occurs when several candidates for a position are interviewed simultaneously. Group interviews offer employers a sense of your leadership potential and style, and provide a glimpse of what you may actually be like as an employee and how you would fit into the team. Candidates may also be asked to solve a problem together which allows interviewers to assess candidate’s skills in action (e.g. teamwork).

Tips:

• Be aware of the dynamics established by the interviewer, try to discover the “rules of the game”.
• Regardless of how you may feel about any member of the group, treat everyone with respect, and avoid power struggles which make you appear uncooperative.
• Give everyone a chance to speak and not monopolize the conversation.
• Be aware that all interactions are being observed; don’t let down your guard or lose your perspective.

General Group Interview/Information Session

This approach is intended to save time and ensure applicants understand the basics of the job and organization by providing large amounts of information. This process is usually followed by an individual interview.

Tip:

• To stand out in a group setting, a well-timed and intelligent question may help the employer remember you positively.

Sequential/Serial Interview

A sequential interview is conducted by two or more interviewers, separately or in sequence. The candidate either moves from one location to another or stays in one room and while different interviewers join them. Sequential interviews involve a number of ‘first impression’ opportunities so be aware of how you present yourself each time. At the end of the process, the interviewers meet to evaluate each applicant and make their decision.

Tip:

• If you have difficulties remembering what you have already said to one person – don’t be afraid to ask!

  1. April 8th, 2016 at 17:38 | #1

    A standard face-to-face interview along with a group interview is the perfect way to gauge how a potential employee behaves individually and a group scenario. The interview process is hard for both parties as it is but it is hard for a reason.

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