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Home »Interview Tips » Types of Interviews

Types of Interviews

Interviews are a pre-requisite to any job placement. It is good to aquaint oneself to the types of interviews and what they involve. Most job seekers experience the general, one-on-one interview style, but some companies carry other forms of screening process that entails a combinationation of interviews. Following are some of common types of interviews:

Certain companies have the interviews with a combination with any of the following screening processes:

  • Technical and aptitude round.
  • Group discussion

Telephonic Interviews:

Telephonic interview is being used frequently these days. Telephonic round gives an opportunity to HR members / Recruiters to save time and call right candidates for further rounds of interview. This makes recruiter to have right candidates for further interview process. Telephonic round may have all questions including personal & technical.

Basically recruiter look for the confidence level of jobseeker while speaking over phone. At times recruiter also check the nervousness of the candidates.There are companies which inform candidates about telephonic interviews so that they get prepared in advance.

Designed to screen out less qualified applicants. Initial screening can also be done by fax or e-mail.

  • Expect a call outside of normal business hours.
  • Eliminate background noises.
  • Have all information by the phone.
  • Consider standing while speaking because one's voice will sound stronger and more confident.

One-On-One Interviews:

Informal Interview:

Interviewer has a general idea of what will be asked, but after the first several questions, the interviewer follows a conversational trend rather than any pre-set pattern or list of questions.

Structured Interview:

Questions are preplanned and written out based on the job requirements and will be asked of every applicant. This is often a longer interview. All questions must be asked of all candidates and then compared. The interviewer takes extensive notes to each answer given.

Unstructured Interview:

Can be interpreted as a type of stress interview if the candidate is not prepared. After one or two questions, the interviewer may sit back and wait for the candidate to make the next move. The candidate should ask questions about the job or the company and respond with how his or her strengths and interests match.

Sequential Interview:

Interviewing with several people one at a time. The candidate should handle this as though each interviewer was the only one, which means many things will be repeated. The interviewee must be alert and energetic for each interview.

Panel Interviews:

  • The candidate meets with more than one person at the same time. Teamwork is important to the company. They want to see how effective the candidate is as part of a group.
  • Take it one question at a time. Focus intently on the questioner.
  • Answer the person who asked the question. Follow-up with a statement or summary to include the group. After answering, look around to see whether anyone seems to need further clarification.
  • Do not assume the questioner is the decision-maker. Interact with each interviewer.
  • Make eye contact with each member of the group.
  • At the conclusion of the interview, shake hands with each interviewer.


  • Questions will be asked of the candidate to describe how he or she would handle certain circumstances or how the candidate has done things in the past.
  • The candidate may be asked to act out a real-life situation. An example would be a sales presentation. If given a choice of selling something in the room, the candidate could choose him or herself.

How to handle Stress:

Conducted either to see how the candidate handles pressure or may be an untrained interviewer on a power trip. Interviewer stares, lets long silences go by, fires questions, interrupts answers, uses sarcasm, etc.

  • Take a deep breath and keep calm.
  • Answer as much as possible before the next interruption.
  • Do not become rattled during silences.
  • Do not be defensive or argumentative.

Case Interview Tips:

The case interview is employed primarily by management-consulting firms, as well as investment-banking companies, and is increasingly being used by other types of corporations as at least part of the job-interviewing process.

Practice extensively before undergoing a case interview. Use books and Web sites in our resources section for practice cases.

Listen carefully to the question. Paraphrase it back to the interviewer to ensure your understanding. Silence -- but not too much of it -- is golden. The interviewer expects you to take a minute or so to collect your thoughts, so don't be afraid of silence.

Remember that rarely is there one "right" answer for analyzing a case. Your process for reaching your conclusions is equally important to the interviewer as is the conclusion itself. Don't be afraid to ask questions. The case interview is meant to be interactive, with lots of back and forth between you and the interviewer.

Construct a logical framework with which to explore the critical issues of the case. Many of the principles you learned in the classroom can serve as a framework. Don't be afraid to think outside the box. Creativity and brainstorming may be just what the interviewer is looking for.

Employment Agency Screening:

  • Conducted by an outside firm (employment agency) to match the basic requirements of the company; comparisons of specific qualifications are made against a job description or the job requirement. Candidates should:
  • Approach the agency in the same professional manner as they do a company.
  • Screener determines if the candidate will move to the next level, which is an interview with the company.

General Interview Tips

No matter what kind of interview you have, remember the following:

  • Maintain eye contact. Eye contact will help you engage the interviewer, establish rapport, and contribute to the interactivity of the interview.
  • Project confidence. Your ability to answer questions confidently without getting flustered or frustrated is the key.
  • Demonstrate your enthusiasm. Assure your interviewer though your enthusiastic demeanor that you are exactly the kind of person he or she would enjoy working with.

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