12 types of job interviews and how to deal with them
Recruiters conduct different types of job interviews to select candidates.
In addition to the traditional interview, interviews can vary from behavioral, group, video, to motivational, technical and even less formal interviews, such as interviews conducted during the lunch break or over coffee in a bar.
In addition, your interlocutors will also vary depending on the type of interview. There are interviews in which your interlocutor is one, the recruiter or a manager, and others in which you interface with a real group of people ready to evaluate you.
If you are preparing for job interviews right now, you should know what to expect from them.
The types of interviews that can happen to you are numerous and require appropriate preparation. In this article, you will understand what are the most common types of interviews and the guidelines for dealing with them.
1. The cognitive interview
This interview is the most frequent and the one you will most likely be asked to take.
It’s an interview you have with an in-person recruiter. During this, the recruiter will ask you a series of questions that are aimed at learning more about your career path, your experiences and attitudes, your motivation and your career goals.
The questions in this interview are varied and are aimed at discovering a generic overview of you, rather than investigating a specific aspect.
Among the most frequently asked questions in this interview are “Tell me about yourself” and “What are your strengths?”. Your answers should be direct and focused on specific episodes that demonstrate your skills and abilities.
2. The telephone interview
While you are looking for a new job, you will need to be prepared for a possible telephone interview at short notice.
More and more companies can surprise you with an unscheduled phone call or with a telephone interview organized very quickly.
Telephone interview questions are a first step for the recruiter to understand if you have what it takes and could be the ideal candidate for that job. They mainly investigate yours experiences and why you want that particular job.
Next, the recruiter will decide if and when to schedule an in-person interview with you.
Remember that during the telephone interview it is important to answer questions but also ask the right questions to the recruiter about the company and the role. Show your interest and try to get details about the position offered.
3. The video interview
The video interview is another type of frequently used in the selection process, especially in recent times.
It was initially used in the early stages of the selection process or if the candidate was physically away from the company headquarters.
Today the video interview is adopted by a greater number of companies that use it at different stages of the selection, regardless of where the company is located.
To prepare for a perfect video interview it is important to follow certain rules and leave nothing to chance. Starting from having the program that will be required for the video interview, such as: Skype, Zoom, FaceTime.
In an interview of this type it is not only your answers that make the difference but also the way you present yourself, choose your background for the video call, make sure that the audio is working well, ask the right questions.
4. The aptitude interview
The aptitude interview is nothing more than a simple traditional job interview. The only difference between the two interviews are the questions.
The questions of an aptitude or behavioral interview aim to find out how you behaved in certain situations you have experienced in the workplace previously.
The rationale behind the interviewer’s questions is that the attitudes you have previously adopted are indicators of how you will behave in the future under similar circumstances in the new company.
The key is to talk in detail about the situation you faced, explaining how you acted, why and what your actions brought you.
5. The motivational interview
As for the aptitude interview, also in the motivational interview, the difference is made by the questions the recruiter asks you.
Companies conduct motivational interviews to ensure that the candidate to be included is guided by the right motivation to do the job , and thanks to this he will be able to benefit the company.
Hiring a motivated candidate means hiring a person who appreciates the company’s work, shares the company’s values, mission and culture and who will be able to go beyond the company’s expectations in their work.
To effectively answer the company’s motivational questions, you need to be clear about your career goals and how the company can help you achieve them, also keeping in mind what the company needs from you.
6. The group interview
Employers may decide to conduct group interviews as they are an effective way to evaluate candidates.
In addition to allowing the company to save time, group interviews are a way to observe how candidates interact with each other and who can distinguish themselves from others.
There are two different types of group interview : one consists of a candidate being interviewed by a group of recruiters; while the other type requires several candidates to be interviewed simultaneously by a single recruiter.
To have a successful group interview you will need to keep your nerve, to know how to deal with the tests and exercises you will be called to do, and you will need to be able to distinguish yourself from the others for the recruiter to remember you.
7. The technical interview
The technical interview is an important phase in a selection process where specialized profiles are sought, for which it is essential to evaluate the specific skills of the candidates.
During this interview your technical skills will be tested through practical exercises, problem solving, and the questions will be aimed at investigating your skills, qualifications and how you achieved them.
In a technical interview, your communication skills are as important as your skills. In fact, you must be able to explain your reasoning and talk about the solutions you would adopt in certain situations.
8. The informal interview
The recruiter may decide to conduct a job interview in a more informal way than a traditional interview.
The informal interview consists of a simple cognitive conversation about the role, the company, you, your professional history and your career goals.
For example, an interview conducted in a café over a cup of coffee is an informal way of evaluating and selecting candidates.
9. The second interview
After having taken and passed the first job interview, the recruiter will call you to have a second interview with the company.
The difference between the first and second interviews is the questions, which at this stage are more specific and go deeper into your experiences and skills.
Furthermore, it is likely that you will meet different people in this second interview, such as a company manager or your potential manager. The second interview usually tends to last longer than the first.
10. The structured interview
The structured interview is a more set form of job interview than the other types of interviews you’ve just seen.
This interview is used by companies to evaluate and compare candidates accurately and impartially. The distinctive feature of the structured interview is only the pre-established questions.
Basically, the recruiter asks all candidates the same questions. If the position requires specific skills, abilities or competences, the employer will set the questions to investigate thoroughly and understand if the candidate has the necessary requirements.
11. The unstructured interview
Unlike the structured interview, the unstructured interview does not require pre-established and identical questions for all candidates.
In an interview of this type, in fact, the questions vary depending on the answers you give the recruiter.
While the recruiter may ask questions that they had previously prepared, the direction this interview takes is rather random, and what the recruiter will ask you will be based on the direction the conversation takes.
The unstructured interview is often seen as less intimidating than traditional job interviews.
However, precisely because each candidate is evaluated differently, and randomly, this interview is less reliable and therefore less used.
12. The final interview
The final interview is the last step of the selection process. After this, you will know if you will be offered the position or not.
This interview is usually conducted by the company’s CEO or other management representatives.
The key to having a perfect final interview is to behave with the same professionalism with which you took the previous ones. Many candidates, in fact, assume that they already have the job offer between their hands and consider the final interview as a formality.
Not so, the final interview is your last chance to conquer the company and for this reason it should be exploited to the fullest. In this phase, you will discuss topics such as compensation, benefits and other job details.
So be prepared to talk about the important details.