7 Types of Job Interviews (Plus How To Prepare and Tips)

Updated June 9, 2023

When interviewing for different companies, it can help to prepare for the different types of interviews you might experience. Depending on the job, there are unique questions an interviewer might ask and various formats they might use to learn more about their candidates. Learning about these different interview tactics can help you prepare for each. In this article, we provide information on how you might prepare for an interview, discuss seven types of interviews and share tips for when you get to this stage in your job search.

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How to prepare for a job interview

Here are some steps you can take to prepare for a job interview:

1. Research the company

Researching the company can show interviewers that you understand what they offer and that your goals align with their mission. Consider browsing the company website to learn about its history, mission and offerings. This can mean learning about the products and services they offer to prepare you with questions they might ask about your opinions or perspectives on their current operations and what you like or would change.

Related: How To Prepare for an Interview

2. Print your resume

Interviewers often refer to your resume when in an interview. Printing several copies can prepare you if there are several interviewers and can ensure you have a copy to reference. Consider using thicker resume paper to show your professionalism and demonstrate that you're serious about the interview.

3. Prepare questions

Although interviewers can ask you several questions about your experience and skills, preparing questions can show your interest in their company. You can ask about potential growth opportunities, what your day would look like and how you can help. These prepared questions can show interviewers you're curious about working there and that you plan to stay with them in the role.

Related: 21 Interview Tips: How To Make a Great Impression

7 types of job interviews

Here are seven types of job interviews you might experience in your job search:

1. One-on-one interview

A one-on-one interview is the traditional kind where you meet with a hiring manager or human resources professional to answer questions. This often happens with the manager who oversees the position, and they want to see how you might fit on their team. They commonly ask about your previous role, your skills and how you've handled situations to see if your prior actions and achievements can help them reach their goals.

2. Panel interview

Panel interviews are when several people ask you questions. These are often people from different perspectives within an organization, like human resources, your potential manager and sometimes employees on the team. As they often have unique roles, they might ask you questions specific that affect different areas of the business. For example, a human resource professional might ask about your salary expectations, while an employee on the team might ask you to discuss your collaboration methods.

3. Distance interview

A distance interview is one where employees may ask to meet on the phone or over video. These are often prescreening methods to ask you basic questions before coming in for a more traditional interview. These commonly happen with human resources professionals and they may ask several template questions. If you meet their expectations, they might schedule an in-person interview to learn more about you. As many companies offer remote positions, video interviews may replace traditional interviews for some companies.

Related: Last-Minute Interview Tips

4. Behavioral interview

Behavioral interviews can be more in-depth than traditional interviews. A hiring manager might ask you to describe specific situations in your previous role, including what actions you took and what the results were. This can be common in industries like technology or science, where they hope to find out how you can solve certain problems with them. These types of interviewers can also ask you about hypothetical situations and how you would handle them.

5. Group interview

Group interviews are ones where you interview with other people for the same or similar roles. Typically, companies might provide a brief presentation about their business first and then interview each person. They might ask you questions in the same room, so this can be an opportunity to show why you're the best candidate. Hiring managers often hope to see how you interact with others in the group to learn about your interpersonal skills.

Related: 13 Tips for a Successful Interview

6. Working interview

A working interview is where you physically perform the duties of a job for the interviewer to evaluate you. This can be common for jobs in writing or sales where they hope to see you apply your expertise in real situations. For example, copywriting interviews might expect to see you write a sample article to see how well your style matches the job requirements.

7. Informal interview

Informal interviews are ones where you meet with the hiring manager and have an informal discussion. This can be common for internal positions, where a manager might take you out to lunch to discuss your expectations and experience while sharing details about the role. Sometimes, they may bring other members of the team to see how well you interact with them and how you respond to their questions.

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Tips for job interviews

Here are some tips for job interviews that you can consider:

  • Be prompt: Being prompt is essential in a job interview to show the hiring manager your professionalism. This also shows that you respect their time and that you have proper time management skills.

  • Bring a notepad: Bringing a notepad shows that you're invested in the conversation during an interview. You might write down your prepared questions and note the answers they provide to show your engagement.

  • Know your interviewer: Knowing your interviewer means addressing them by the name they provide. This can be especially important if you're interviewing with your hiring manager to show them your respect.

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