Employers use Group Interviews to understand how you respond in a group situation working as part of a team. The observer will watch to see wehther the candidate takes a leading role or more of a backseat position. If you are leading the group the observer will want to see how you delegate responsibility, if you’re taking a less forward role then they will want to see what you do contribute to the activities.
There are two different types of group interviews, combined interviews and panel interviews.
Combined interviews include all the candidates meeting together and undertaking different tasks, perhaps through several hours, both within a group and individual tasks or interviews. This process will let the interviewer see:
– How your knowledge can be used within the discussions,
– Teamworking and leadership abilities,
– Communication qualities, particularly listening.
Panel interviews usually ask the candidates to produce a presentation to the panel of interviewers, and sometimes also to the other candidates. The interview panel can consist of top-level CEOs or HR managers depending on the position you are applying for. Make sure that you contribute something meaningful to the discussions, but also li
Interviewers tend to favour the Panel Interview process when employing for a high stress level role, often in management positions where there would be lots of responsibility. Each candidate will be asked questions by any of the panel members. The best way to deal with this type of group interview is to remain calm and answer as proficiently as possible.
Tips for Group Interview success
When you receive confirmation of the interview, make sure you get as much information as possible. That includes:
- Time, location and likely length the interview.
- The process the group interview is likely to follow.
- Names and positions of the individuals on the panel.
- Arrive prepared with a number of copies of your CV for the interviewers if necessary.
- The interviewer will be looking to see what type of person you are, and how you will fit into the existing team and the company. Try to be confident but not overbearing.
Panel Group Interview Tips
- As you enter the Panel Interview room, try to shake hands with the panel members.
- Once the first question is addressed to you, take the time to thank the panel for your opportunity.
- Make sure that you address your answers to all of the panel, and get eye contact with all of them at some point throughout the interview, ideally within each question.
- At the end of the interview you’ll have an opportunity to ask questions yourself, which you should have prepared so that you seem interested in the vacancy. Try to direct this to a specific person rather than hoping anyone will answer it.
- End the interview on a positive note by thanking and shaking hands with each panel member, and reiterating that you look forward to working with them.