Job interview etiquette

SimonGeneral6 Comments

Spent the afternoon interviewing today for an analyst to support our direct and digital marketing work at Medway Council.

One of the candidates didn’t show up. At all.

We called her and she said that she wasn’t interested in the job at all. She’d changed her mind since we arranged the interview with her a week ago. It hadn’t crossed her mind to let us know that she wasn’t coming.

Since when did that become acceptable behaviour!?

I know people change their minds or get another job so won’t want to come for an interview. But in those circumstances surely a phone call or just an email is the polite thing to do?

You never know when you might meet people again in your career, so a bit of common decency and politeness wouldn’t go amiss.

6 Comments on “Job interview etiquette”

  1. Michelle Kostya

    I recently was hiring for my company, and I was astonished at what people felt was proper etiquette for an interview. And, even more shocked at the horrible resumes and cover letters (if they bothered) that were sent my way. Very few targeted their letters or CVs for the job. Considering it was a communications position there were a lot of spelling errors – immediately following a boast of how well they write!

  2. Simon

    Thanks for the comment Michelle – basic grammar and spelling is bad enough, let alone for jobs where writing is an integral part of the role!

  3. Kevin Campbell-Wright

    I agree. I interviewed not too long ago for a part time position, but nevertheless a well paid one. Some application forms were dreadful and several of the candidates hadn’t prepared the task we asked. One said they didn’t really think we’d meant it. Another said, as they left, that they supposed they should have washed their hair before interview.

    Personally, I was never a good interviewee until I had interviewed and my thoughts and methods changed. However, the basics of appearance, preparation and politeness were never missing.

  4. Hussain Ahmed

    Michelle , what we always try to measure in interviews? ability to do the job?
    I come across so many people in life who did not even know how to write but they are still leading successful career.

  5. Heather

    Hi Simon,

    I have recently re-located to England from the United States about a month ago. During that month I have sent my CV to several recruiting agencies who either do not have positions available or have told me I do not have the criteria their client is looking for. My dilemma is I have applied for a Marketing Manager Position with a company directly and I really want to get at least an interview. I am thinking of sending a mini portfolio of things I have done to follow up with my CV I have already sent. Is this a good idea? I think I really need to do something to stand out from the other candidates to show I can do the job. Please help!

    Thank you for you time,

    Heather Birch

  6. Simon

    Hi Heather,

    If I was the recruiter, I’d view a mini portfolio as a positive thing to assist with selection of candidates for interview…but only if the content of the mini portfolio is relevant to the job you’re applying for,rather than being generic.

    Producing a mini portfolio that pulls out the key aspects of your previous experience that make you suitable for the role you’re applying for would seem like the best way forward (IMHO).

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