There’s little doubt that for many, interviews are a scary prospect, especially if you’re unsure of the type of job interview you’re heading into. But don’t sweat it!

The good news is, your resume has got you in the top 2% of applicants, so now all you need to do is wow the hiring manager with your authentic charm and personality!

With that point checked, let me walk you through a number of other important elements to help ensure that your next interview runs without a hitch! 

So to begin with, if you haven’t been told what type of interview you’re going to be walking into, contact immediately and ask!

Find out the interviewers name and position and do some research into their background via LInkedIn. Try to find any commonalities you have with them that could help you to build some quick rapport.

Now, let’s take a look at the 6 types of job interview that you’re likely to encounter and the essential tips for nailing each of them.

One-On-One Interviews

The one-on-one interview is the traditional, most common type of job interview. It usually takes place on-site where the successful candidate(s) will start their new employment. The interviewer will often be the manager of the department; In other words, your future boss.

Although a one-on-one interview may seem daunting, keep in mind it isn’t an interrogation, it’s your opportunity to win over the interviewer with your prepared answers and personality. Be prepared for open-ended questions and try to enforce the ‘80/20 rule’, in which you as the interviewee should be contributing 80% of the dialog.

Essential Tips For One-On-One Interviews

  • Remain focused on the interviewer.
  • Prepare questions to ask the interviewer.
  • Know the skills necessary for the role and prepare situational stories and examples around those skill sets.
  • Build rapport quickly.
  • Assume they haven’t read your resume


Phone Interviews

Telephone interviews are common for those who are at a considerable distance away from the company’s base of operations and are often used in the screening process.

Here candidates are whittled down beginning with a series of soft opening questions, then moving onto some qualifying or technical questions.

These interviews are usually one-on-one, but could also involve being on a loudspeaker to a small panel of interviewers.

The 6 types of job interviews and how to nail them.These types of job interviews usually last between 30-45 minutes and the questions will depend on the type of job you are applying for.

Essential Tips For A Phone Interview

Be prepared to answer soft opening questions, such as

  • What are your strengths and weaknesses?
  • What don’t you like in a job role?
  • What attracted you to the vacant job role?
  • What are your 1/3/5 career goals?
  • At the end of the conversation, ask “What if anything, may stop me from proceeding to the next interview stage”?


Competency Interviews

The competency interview can be often referred as a situational/behavioral interview. This type of job interview usually lasts about 1 hour and aims at learning more about the candidate’s preferred working style, and measures the candidate’s behavior in certain situations. The skill set required to perform the job role with often be the basis of the type of questions being asked in this type of interview.

Approximately 33-50% of all employers use this method of interviewing and in most cases, a standard set of questions will be asked to each candidate, which helps ‘level the playing field’.

Essential Tips For The Competency Interview

  • It’s vital to make a great first impression by using good body language and by being authentic.
  • If you can’t answer a question say something like, “I’ve not been in that particular situation, however, I have an experience which is relevant and which I would take a similar approach to the situation you described”
  • Make a list of the skill set required for the job role and prepare “stories” and examples of when you’ve accomplished results. 


Group interviews

Group interviews are becoming more and more common as they are a way for the interviewer(s) to see several candidates at once. Not only does this way save time when they have a lot of applicants, but also, it gives the interviewers a chance to witness how a candidate interacts with others.

A group interview is usually broken up into three main parts:

1) Presentation.

2) A Group Q&A.

3) Short One-On-One Interview.

Essential Tips For A Group Interview

  • Show off your leadership skills, without bullying.
  • Don’t dominate conversations or ask too many questions.
  • But don’t be too quiet/reserved – And, listen to others.
  • Afterward – follow up. Ask when you are likely to hear back.
  • Speak with purpose.


Panel interviews

The panel type of job interview can sometimes feel the most daunting, as it involves sitting in front of usually three or more interviewers who all have input into deciding if they are the right candidate or not. The interviewers may consist of the department manager, HR, or other senior employees that may interact with the successful candidate on a day-to-day basis.

The 6 types of job interviews and how to nail them.This type of job interview often helps to shorten the interview process and will reduce the time it takes for the company to select the winning candidate. On the downside, there is often less personal interaction between the interviewee and interviewers, which can make it more difficult to build a rapport with the panel members. One of the members of the panel will likely be in control of the interview but don’t let that stop you from interacting with all of the panelists.

On the downside, there is often less personal interaction between the interviewee and interviewers, which can make it more difficult to build a rapport with the panel members. One of the members of the panel will likely be in control of the interview but don’t let that stop you from interacting with all of the panelists.

Essential Tips For A Panel Interview

  • Try not to figure out who is who on the panel, or who is the most important. –They should all be treated as equal.
  • When answering questions, your primary eye contact should be with the one asking the question, with secondary glances at the others.
  • Research the interviewers’ titles and roles prior to the interview.


Video Interviews

Video interviews are similar to phone interviews in the way that they are common when trying to overcome a large geographic distance. The main difference, obviously, is instead of using a phone; the device used would be a piece of video communication hardware. (E.g. A webcam through a PC or the camera on your mobile device.)

Most video calls are conducted via a service such as Skype, so a strong Internet signal will be required to avoid lag or your call cutting out mid-way.

Essential Tips For A Video Interview

  • Face into a light source.
  • Use a laptop/desktop computer.
  • Have a practice run.
  • Be aware of your background.
  • Dress appropriately.
  • Look into the camera and not at the screen.
  • The camera should be from the chest upward.



These quick explanations on what to expect from the 6 different types of interview, should be enough to get your preparation started.

If you’d like to learn more about the Top 3 Winning Interview Tips For 2018, read this blog post.

And to successfully prepare for the whole interview process and deliver a killer interview, then check out our flagship course The Interview Success Training Program. 

Learn how to nail your next job interview

Either way, good luck with your next interview!

Zak Pullen is the co-founder and content director of Arran Pullen Career Coaching. With a background in counseling, Zak is acutely aware of the pressure that job hunting brings and is constantly researching new tools to make the journey easier. When Zak is not researching, producing course content and writing job hunting articles he is penning a new rock album in his home studio.