SmartRecruiters Blog

Types of Interviews (Part 2)

This is a two part blog series that discusses the candidate selection and interview evaluation process from the point of view of an employer, hiring manager, and recruiter. There are a number of different types of interviews that hiring managers and recruiters can employ. Here are four more of the most common interview types providing an introductory overview for employer and businesses of types and sizes.

    • Stress Interview. This form of interview was more common in sales positions and is rare today. Candidates are placed into stressful or confrontation situations where they are asked to perform or answer interview questions under duress. The stress interview is usually a deliberate attempt to see how the candidate handles himself or herself under pressure. The most common format is like a law interrogation room where two interviewers assume the roles of good cop and bad cop. Candidate should calmly answer each question. Ask for clarification if you need it, and never rush into an answer.


    • Telephone or Skype Interview. Many organizations will conduct interviews by telephone to narrow a field of candidates as the first stage of the interview and candidate selection process. In the past, I used phone interviews to prescreen all my candidates. Telephone or technology based interviews using tools like Skype and other Internet video technologies can be helpful in lowering the cost of travel expenses for your organization. It’s also a great way to see how your candidate reacts to using technology that may or may not be part of the new position.


    • Group Interview. A group interview is usually designed to uncover the leadership potential of prospective managers and employees who will be dealing with customers. The front-runner candidates are gathered together in an informal, discussion type interview. A subject is introduced and the interviewer will start off the discussion. These situations are great for mass hire situations like warehouse or retail positions. For job seekers, the goal of the group interview is to see how you interact with others and how you use your knowledge and reasoning to influence others.


    • Unstructured Interview. I alluded to a structured interview in Part 1 of this series. A structured interview is standardized interview process that involves a series of interview questions that were pre-selected. The structured interview is the preferred method for hiring managers and interviewers to use because it lessens the likelihood that illegal interview questions will be asked by the interviewer during the course of the interview. An unstructured interview allows for a more casual conversation and discovery with questions flowing based on the feel from the hiring manager.

Be sure to take a look at Part 1 of the Types of Interviews Series, where I discussed four of the common types of employer interviews.

Jessica Miller-Merrell, SPHR is a HR consultant, new media strategist, and author who writes at Blogging4Jobs. Jessica is the host of Job Search Secrets, an internet television show for job seekers.

Photo Credit Society of Women Engineers

Free Software Forever. Signup for SmartRecruiters Free Recruiting Software.


Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell, SPHR is a HR consultant, new media strategist, and author who writes at Blogging4Jobs. Jessica is the host of Job Search Secrets, an internet television show for job seekers.

Read. Share. Hire.
Sign up for weekly curated content from the SmartRecruiters Blog.

By filling out this form you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service, as well as express your consent to receive communications from us