Nightmare Interviews: How far would you go for the job you want?
I spoke to a job seeker recently who told me she’d been asked to travel to London for an interview for a job based near where she lives in Devon. She was also asked to take-part a telephone interview outside of normal business hours and a third face-to-face interview lasting three hours. All for a job which wasn’t guaranteed to be hers.
This poses the question: is this standard practice? Or is it due to the candidate-rich employer’s market the economic climate has caused? Should candidates expect to have to be more flexible in their approach to interviews and be prepared to exceed the normal level of commitment in order to land that job?
The problems these nightmare interview practises create amount to the fact that if you are unemployed and seeking a new job, you may not be able to afford things like long distance travel at short notice. Equally if you are employed and are seeking to change your job, you may not have the time – either holiday or personal, to get to interviews at short notice or take part in a longer process.
Here are my tips to help try and get around nightmare interviews:
– ask questions such as “Why do I need to travel there?” – but whilst retaining a degree of professionalism and seeming flexible
– if companies are willing to negotiate on salary then it is possible that they will be willing to change interview locations if they are presented with a valid reason.
Ask the HR department – or the recruiters – if expenses can be claimed back.
Only agree to attend interviews and phone interviews during business hours, perhaps during lunch-breaks.
Also, don’t forget, you’ve been asked to attend an interview which means the company is interested in you and you have something that they want – jobs work both ways. Plus it never hurts to ask for information, and if you don’t ask you may never know.
Above all, try to strike a balance, for the time being, it’s still an employers market and you don’t want to come across as uninterested. What’s your nightmare interview scenario?
For more interview tips, check out our latest tips.