The Different Types of Interviews

This is usually done by the Human Resources Department or an outside agency. They want to eliminate candidates who do not have the basic requirements for the job.

Your Purpose: To make a good impression.

  • Treat the screener as though they are making the final decision.
  • Answer questions clearly and concisely.

One-on-One (This type of interview is the most common)

Interviewer knows which questions they want to ask. They might change their mind about questions and carry on a conversation with the candidate. This can be difficult, because you may spend the whole time talking about sports or music. After this interview, you wonder what happened.

In a structured interview, a list of questions has been prepared based on the job requirements. The same questions are asked of every candidate. The same questions are asked in the same order. Notes are taken.

This interview can be very stressful if you are not prepared. The interviewer may ask a question or two and then wait. You should be prepared with questions of your own and show initiative is asking them.

You will interview with several people, but with only one at a time. These individuals might be people you will be interacting with during the course of your work. Since they each need to interview you, treat each one as a separate interview. You may have to answer the same questions over and over.

Your task: Be honest and be prepared to ask as well as answer.

This is also called a group interview. The panel or group is made up of people you would be working with. It can be as few as two people or up to as many as nine people. They have a list of prepared questions and will usually take turns asking the questions.

The purpose for this type of interview is to see how others react to you. Since you will probably be working on a team, they need to see how you respond to their questions.

Your Purpose: To make a good impression.

  • Make sure you make eye contact with each member of the group. Focus on the individual who asked the question.
  • After answering the question, look around the group and see if anyone wanted further clarification.
  • Treat them all with respect. You will not know who is going to make the hiring decision.

To reduce the costs of interviewing many companies now do a pre-screening by e-mail or over the telephone.

Your task: Be prepared. Have all information next to you.

  • Eliminate background noises.
  • Be professional.
  • Stand while you talk. Your voice will sound stronger and more confident.

You will be asked about real-life situations. They are looking at how you respond in given situations.

Some examples:

  • Give me an example when you had to deal with a difficult student/teacher/neighbor. What happened? What did you do?
  • Tell me about a major obstacle you encountered in your last job/class and how you handled it.
  • What types of things make you angry? How have you dealt with them?


The Four Phases to an Interview


  • Both the candidate and the employer are getting first impressions of each other.
  • You are selling yourself at this stage.
  • Personal introductions are made.

Background and Probe Stage

  • Questions are asked during this stage.
  • Different types of questions are used.
  • Notes are taken and later compared.

Matching Stage

  • The interviewer asks you if you have any questions of them.
  • Be prepared with a little knowledge of the company and what is happening at the company.

Final Questions and Close

  • These questions and the answers will determine if you go on to the next level or if you get the job.


Categories Careers, Interviewing

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