Government Interview Process

Be prepared for the government interview process. To convert the government job interview into a job offer, see below all the different types of government interviews one by one in order to prepare for the big day.

Types of government interviews:

Initial screening interviews:

This will be the first round of interview in the government hiring process done in order to narrow down the government applicant pool and invite only the candidates whose skills highly match the job description for an on-site interview. Normally, the screening interviews are conducted over the phone and will be very short in conversation with questions focusing on basic qualifications relevant to the job requirement.

On-site (or) Face-to-face interviews:

This is one of the most common types of interviews handled by any employe. Mostly, it will be a one-on-one interview, but sometimes, a group of people in that government agency or city/county department interviews the candidate before a job offer is made. During a face-to-face interview, your dress code, appearance, visual factors and your verbal and non-verbal communication skills really matters as it will give a clear picture about your communication skills. Face-to-face interviews are the best opportunity to develop a good relationship with the interviewer.

Telephone interviews:

The phone interviews are usually done to complete initial screening, but it is occasionally used when the applicant resides in another city or state. In this case, the conversation will be longer and more detailed compared to phone screening interviews. Below are a few do’s and don’ts that should be adhered during the phone interviews:

  1. Prepare well with all the information before the interview.
  2. Try to use a land phone, or be in an area that receives excellent wireless coverage, as it avoids frequent disconnections or signal problems.
  3. Do not take the interview while travelling or being in public place.
  4. Take the interview at a quiet place (without any disturbances and distractions).

Employers (reporting managers or decision-makers) might call you without prior notice and request you for a detailed discussion. In such instance, please inform the interviewer to schedule it at a later date and time if you are busy or travelling. The interviewer will understand your situation (as they have called without prior information) and post pone the interview at a later day.

Serial (or) Back-to-back interviews:

In a serial interview you might have discussion with many people within the department throughout the day. This interview format is followed when the government agency or department decides to close the deal (offer a position) on the same day. Your chances of getting hired improve as you clear each round and move forward. This interview is very tire-some and stressful as it is conducted on the same day.

Panel interviews:

Normally, this type of interview happens when a department has a “selection committee” or the City Council to finalize the right candidate for the interviewed government position. From the employer’s perspective, this interview is considered as very efficient as it allows the interviewers to do many interviews simultaneously. Here, it is important that the interviewee must be more focused and engage every member of the panel. During the panel interview, it is better to carry copies of your resume and any supporting documentation for each member of the interview team. Well-practiced presentations can be especially effective with this type of government interview. Presentations highlight a candidate’s communications skills, which become more important as the government job is more directing and managing in nature.

Video conference interviews:

Video conference interviews are conducted by government agencies which has their office equipped with the technology needed and a web-based or local solution for the candidate as well. This will avoid the candidates from travelling out-of-state where the in-person interview will be held. With advancements in technology, the short-listed applicants can go on the web to access and participate in a video conference interview. Government agencies at the very least like to have this option on the table as it can lead to significant savings from candidates traveling for on-site interviews. Before you commit to interviews via video conferencing, ensure that you have or have access to technology that will deliver an uninterrupted experience.