Many employers use a group/panel interview format for second or final interviews. However, some companies can use more than one individual during a first interview. A group/panel interview is an interview where you are meeting with one or more people representing the company you have applied with. Typically you meet with several people in a conference room type setting. Some may also join the interview via video or phone. Therefore, you may have several formats coming together in one medium. So be prepared. Group/panel interviews are advantageous to the company because several people of the organization can meet the applicant and observe their responses and behaviors at the same time. This can aid in the assessment and final decision. A group/panel Interview may be more stressful and intimidating for an applicant to have a group of people questioning them. Companies may be testing how well you do under pressure. Tips to help you prepare and ace the interview are below.
- You should receive the names and titles of those that will participate in the group/panel interview in advance. If you do not receive the names automatically, request this information.
- Research each individual and learn their position and how the position you are interviewing for will interact.
- If you do not receive the names in advance, take note of each person at the table, so you can address them in the interview later.
- Expect several questions in a group/panel interview, but take your time answering each one.
- Maintain eye contact with the person asking you the question and answer the person who asked the question, while periodically keeping eye contact with each individual in the room.
- You should come prepared to ask each person within the group/panel a question during your interview.
- As a follow-up send each person a thank-you letter or email after the interview.