What job interviewees are looking for


It’s easy to feel like the odds are stacked against you in an interview. Even the most talented people succumb to nerves and struggle with communicating how capable they are. Although it’s very much the candidate’s job to shine, employers have a big role to play in getting the most out of their prospective employees during an interview.

SEEK has released some key insights to help guide this process along:

  • Candidates prefer interviews that involve less people, with 57% preferring a traditional one-on-one interview

  • Nearly half (45%) of candidates who either had a group or panel interview liked it the least

  • Informality is key to a great interview! 41% of respondents that had a lunch or coffee catch up liked it the most

  • 64% agree that only 1-2 people should be in the interview, which should ideally include a direct manager and a senior leader or HR manager

  • Candidate performance in interviews is negatively impacted when the interviewer is ill-prepared or hasn’t properly read the candidate’s resume

  • 64% of candidates being interviewed perform the best mid-morning (9am-12pm)

  • Interestingly, 40% of candidates believe their interviewers gave an unrealistic preview of the role

Kathleen McCudden, Group HR Director for SEEK comments:

“Whilst it should only be one of several inputs towards making a decision to hire the best person for the job, there is no question that the interview remains acritical part of any hiring process.  Making a candidate feel comfortable in an interview is really important in discovering the most accurate picture of a potential future employee. The more comfortable a candidate feels, the more genuine the insights you will gain about the person.

It’s also important to remember that candidates are also interviewing you and your company.  For this reason, it is crucial for employers to be open and honest about the nature of the job.  This means being upfront about the working hours, main tasks, training and the expected outcomes; so that candidates do not have any unwelcome surprises after they accept the role and have commenced with the company.”