Interview panels/more than one person interviewing?

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0_equals_true
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07 Mar 2008, 12:41 pm

What is the point of that? It is hard enough having to face one person to answer questions. Two is really tricky. I've been invited to an interview with no less than three people on the interview panel! I have no idea who to address my answers to and where to look. I had this before for some interviews for my university placement, it was a nightmare. Needless to say I wasn't successful on those interviews. Interestingly the interview that I was successful on, the (one) person had a large gap in his teeth. I couldn't help but look at it and I was worried about getting caught although it might have looked as if I was listening to him more.

My job councillor at the NAS prospects service said it is not unreasonable for me to request that that they interview with just one person. I don't really want to be a pain though.



the_incident
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07 Mar 2008, 2:44 pm

Nearly all of the interviews I've had have been with multiple people. I suppose the purpose is to get several opinions on the candidates. Even more fun is the panel interview where they write down all of your answers as exactly as possible.

Generally, one of those people is the supervisor of the position for which you are interviewing, and I try to ask who that person is in order to make sure they get the proper attention.

Usually, I address the person who asked the question, but also glance at the other people while answering. In some interviews, one person asks all of the questions, and in others they trade off asking questions, which can get confusing.

Try to take it all in stride and not get flustered.


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Rack
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08 Mar 2008, 3:16 am

The most surreal experience I had was when I applied for a position as a trainee IT support technician. There was the person supervising the department, the head of IT in that office and the regional director of IT at the interview. They then explained that the European and global directors were going to join in via teleconference. I kind of broke down at that point and asked whether the Prime Minister was going to connect via webex. Probably not the right thing to say but it seemed kind of surprising.



0_equals_true
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09 Mar 2008, 7:51 am

Rack wrote:
The most surreal experience I had was when I applied for a position as a trainee IT support technician. There was the person supervising the department, the head of IT in that office and the regional director of IT at the interview. They then explained that the European and global directors were going to join in via teleconference. I kind of broke down at that point and asked whether the Prime Minister was going to connect via webex. Probably not the right thing to say but it seemed kind of surprising.

Wow! That sounds like tough ordeal. What purpose does that serve? All I can think of is they are very centralist and control freaks or they wanted to be seen to be in touch with potential candidates. Did you get the job?

I guess I will have to 'take in my stride' although I probably wouldn't have posted this if I took things in my stride so easily. Sometimes I can wing things but that is a rather hit and miss affair.



Nan
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09 Mar 2008, 11:47 am

Wow, now THAT was a panel interview!! !!

When I've been in on hiring, panel interviews were usually done because:

1) It's easier to get all the hiring people in the same room to observe the candidate, schedule-wise.

2) You can observe and listen to the candidate responding to questions other than your own

3) You can then discuss the candidate with the other interviewers after they leave the room, having had the same experience with the candidate as a reference point.

On the aside, I loathe panel interviews as a candidate. One-on-one I've finally mastered, but it's an entirely different strategy to go into a panel interview than a one-on-one.

Good luck!



0_equals_true
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10 Mar 2008, 4:27 pm

Nan wrote:
When I've been in on hiring, panel interviews...

So what you are saying that you didn't ask the questions, or only one person was asking the questions? I had some interviews where two persons were asking the questions and they would talk over each other.



joku_muko
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10 Mar 2008, 11:15 pm

I consider a panel to be a lot easier. When it's one on one there is more pressure. When there are many each of them can form their own opinion. With one on one you only have one opinion.



Nan
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11 Mar 2008, 1:24 am

0_equals_true wrote:
Nan wrote:
When I've been in on hiring, panel interviews...

So what you are saying that you didn't ask the questions, or only one person was asking the questions? I had some interviews where two persons were asking the questions and they would talk over each other.


No, actually, each person in the panel had a chance to ask specific questions. If they (anyone in the room) had any questions when the candidate responded, they were free to ask.