Types of Interviews for Placement Drives
An individual or a candidate is likely to experience a variety of interview styles and formats. In some cases, the candidate is handed over the offer letter just after the completion of one round of interview; which can be long or short. In other cases, the process may be longer and involve more than one interview with multiple stakeholders including the Human Resources (HR) representative, different levels of management and potential colleagues.
This type of interview is usually exercised by larger organizations that have a large applicant pool and hence they need to trim the numbers. The screening interview becomes the first stage of the process and is used to ensure that the candidate meets the minimum eligibility requirement. It is often conducted by a computerized system or by an HR representative, through a telephonic conversation. The agenda is to go through a standardized list of checks to determine if there is anything which might disqualify the candidate from the further processes of the position.
This is a cost-effective way of screening candidates with a view to narrow down the number of final applicants for the one-to-one interviews, which are resource-heavy. These can be comparatively challenging as one cannot rely on non-verbal communication to make a mark. So, you need to lay emphasis on your voice clarity and tonal expression in order to convey yourself in the best possible way. You are expected to prepare for this interview like any other interview and in the case when you are called and you are not prepared, then you can always politely request for rescheduling to a mutually convenient time. This will give you space to refresh yourself mentally and be better prepared.
Keep ready a copy of your resume, organization information, points about yourself that you should highlight, and a list of questions you may want to ask.
A glass of water to keep your throat hydrated and a pen with a notepad, in case required, should be handy.
Make sure you're alone, without any distractions, in a quiet place. Although it's telephonic, you may find that dressing up formally helps you to slip into a formal "interview frame of mind".
Video conferencing is typically used to conduct interviews with the help of video technology, e.g.. Skype. This is typically used when the interviewer is in a separate city and helps in saving costs. All these interview strategies that you'd adopt if you were meeting in-person should be applied here too and can make or break your interview — body language, dressing and, of course, the verbal communication.
The most common and also the most related-to-interview format is one-on-one( also called face-to-face). It is customarily conducted by the hiring manager - the one to whom will the applicant be reporting to if hired-and is usually the last step in case of a multistage process. Since the interviewer is not an HR person, he/she may or may not be as competent and so the interview becomes more subjective than usual - depending on the interviewer's personality and experience, the interview may follow a clear agenda, or it relies on the candidate to lead with his or her responses to open-ended questions.
This type of interview is taken by a panel of two or more interviewers and is preferred in order to minimize the factor of individual bias. This format is quite common for graduate, professional colleges and lateral job interviews. One or all interviewers may question the candidate.
A group Interview is conducted to know the leadership style and group behaviour of the candidates. It can be conducted in either of the two ways - questions aimed at each candidate separately and sequentially or the same question thrown to all the candidates simultaneously, where anyone can answer the question. The candidates may also be asked to indulge in a group task and solve a problem together. This, again, is done to evaluate skills like teamwork. presence of mind etc.
General Group Interview/ Information Session
This one is more like an open-house session which is planned to save time and makes sure that the applicants have got a good hold on the basics of the job and organization. Large doses of information are disseminated simultaneously, encouraging curious, well-intended questions to be usually followed by personal interviews.
Sequential/ Serial Interview
A serial interview, as the name implies, involves two or more interviewers, separately or in a sequence. Either the candidates remain seated and the interviewers switch places one after the other or the candidates move from one room to another. In the end, the interviewers gather to consolidate their evaluations and reach a unanimous decision on the hiring. The challenge of this format is the occurrence of the 'first impression' situation more than once. You need to be much more alert and keep your energy running in order to leave a
lasting impact on each interviewer. Always remember to maintain consistency in your responses; else it could lead to a question on your credibility.