Understanding Different Interview Types

Interviews are conversations, in which an individual answers questions from someone to see whether interviewee are suitable for the advertised role. There are different interview types that an employer may use, however, all interviews serve the same purpose – to recruit the best candidate they can choose. Interviews also provide employers great insight into who you are as a person. From that, employers are able to determine whether you are the right person for the position as your skills, personality, knowledge, and experience will be evaluated.

It’s your goal of become the best candidate and succeed. By understanding all the different interview methods that can be adopted, you can prepare in advance to perform with impression in your D-day. 6 types of interview are listed below for you to look through:


Structured is the most common interview typed that is often utilised. This method is typically formal and organised, and will normally consist of one to two interviewers which are typically from the same team. Structured interviews will often start off with icebreaker questions to help ease the individual before.

Pre-determined questions will be asked. Every candidate will need to answer the same questions in the same order with the purpose of identifying their skill levels, and suitability for the role that was applied. In a structured interview, the questions asked are close-ended therefore a certain piece of information is demanded from applicants. Individuals will be also gain greater insight into the day to day work responsibilities, and philosophies that the company may follow during this interview.



Unstructured interviews are informal and usually happen when interviewers are more interested in your responses. Unlike structured interviews, this interview type tends to be more conversational, where conversations between the interviewer and applicant can occur with the open-ended questions. If you find yourself in an unstructured interview, be friendly! However maintain your professionalism. Stir the conversation towards yourself, skills, assets, and qualifications. Showcase to the employer why you believe you are the most qualified for the job.



Behavioural interviewing is a technique used by employers to gain insight about your past behaviour and performance in particular situations. Hypothetical questions will not appear much in these type of interviews. Instead questions like ‘How did you handle…?’ will be asked. The interviewer will give you different evaluation of certain areas based on your answers.

Leadership, teamwork, communication, interpersonal skills are the factors an employer will look for during your storytelling. They would examine your behaviour patterns, rather than the correct your answers to predict whether individuals tend to repeat previous performances or follow the similar behaviour patterns. To help you respond to behavioural interview questions, follow the STAR method.

S — Situation

T — Tasks that you were given

A — Actions that you undertook

R — Results

Examples of Behavioural interview questions:

  • Tell me about a time when you…?
  • Give me an example of how you dealt with an unreasonable client/customer?
  • Tell me the time when your boss told you to do something you knew was wrong and how you handled it?
  • Describe the most creative work-related project you have completed.
  • Give me an example of a problem you faced on the job, and tell me how you solved it.
  • Tell me about a situation in the past in which you had to deal with a very upset supervisor or co-worker.
  • Give me an example of when you had to show good leadership.



The term ‘Situation’ refers to a set of circumstances in which one finds himself. Therefore you can assume that a situational interview will present diverse scenarios. Applicants would be given hypothetical situations in and are asked to respond to. By doing so, the employer is able to test the job seeker for several aspects. Areas include expertise about the job, problem-solving skills, analytical skills and the knowledge that one currently possesses. The responses that the applicant will provide is used as an indication of how well the individual will handle, and behave when he/she faces that particular condition.

Additionally, employers are able to see how an individual is able to tackle problems with short notice and minimal preparation. Situational is believed to be more reliable indicators of your problem-solving skills because it also reflects how the actions that you will undertake in the future role.

Examples of Situational interview questions:

  • What would you do if you worked hard on a solution to a problem, and your solution was criticised by your team?
  • What would you do if you made a strong recommendation in a meeting, but your colleagues decided against it?
  • If you were dissatisfied with an aspect of your job, how would you handle it? What is one instance where you would be dissatisfied?
  • Let’s say you began working on a project that was due on a tight deadline. You’ve gotten a decent way through when you realise that you’ve made a detrimental mistake that will require you to start over. How do you fix it and what do you do about the deadline?



In this interview type, candidates will be interviewed by a group of interviewers. The aim of a panel interview is to see how an individual can cope with demanding conditions, so four to five people will be asking questions all at once. There will be scenarios where several candidates may be present in the room at once. In those type of situations, members of the panel will interview and ask applicants one at a time.

Panel interviews save organisations time particularly those companies who are seeking individuals for a number of different positions across the company’s departments. This interview method reduces the risk of hiring a candidate that was not suitable for the job. By having different members of the panel, they are able to compensate for any weaknesses that an individual may have made recruitment more effective and efficient. Being knowledgeable about the role and the company is the key to success a panel interview, as questions will be fired constantly in this type of interview.

Before the interview, ask for the details of those individuals who are conducting the interview. During the interview, you need to address and engage each interviewer when answering a question. Starting by making eye contact with the person who has asked the question before gradually shifting focus to the other members of the panel. This will generate a positive image.



Group interview is a screening process in which candidates who are applying for the same position will be set against each other as they will be interviewed at the same time. Group interviews are a method in which interviewers can test applicants for their style, professionalism, leadership skills and their ability to actively cooperate and work in a group under pressure. The reason as to why interviewers hold group interviews is so they can see which candidate decides to stand out from the crowd.

Activities that take place in group interview involves separating candidates into smaller groups. Once interviewees are placed in a group, the person in charge of conducting the interview will assign a small task in which they must work together to solve. By doing the task assigned, interviewers are able to assess areas such as contribution level, reaction to others and how well you will perform in a team.

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