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Interviews can be particularly difficult to secure and can be equally as challenging to complete.  There can be a plethora of questions you may have on the interview process, including what to bring, what questions to ask, and how early you should plan to arrive.  However, more-and-more companies are beginning to offer open interviews.  So, what is an open interview?

An open interview is a type of interview that is available to all interested candidates.  Typically, a company will post about an upcoming open interview, in-which all interested candidates are welcome to attend.  Generally, companies will conduct open interview when they are looking to secure candidates for multiple positions or when they are looking to fill an open role quickly.

How Does It Work?

Open interviews are different from their regular interview counterparts as they are scheduled for a block of time on a particular date or dates.  All interested applicants are allowed to appear and apply in-person for the role.  As the role is open to all interested candidates, you will typically be competing with a larger swath of people for a particular role.  However, as most companies will only conduct an open interview when they are looking to hire a candidate quickly, your chances of landing the position are higher.

As the interview is set for a particular block-of-time, it is generally assumed that the interview process occurs on a first-come, first-served basis.  This means that the interviewer will be conducting interviews of candidates as they come into the location.  It is wise to try to attend the interview as early as possible to ensure that you meet with the interviewer.

When attending an open interview, you should be aware that there will be a large group of interested and qualified candidates.  These candidates will be applying for the same or similar roles as you.  It is important that you arrive early and on-time and are prepared for the open interview, just as you would prepare for a regular one.

How-To Find Open Interviews?

Companies will typically post on social media, their website, job boards, and newspapers on any upcoming open interviews they may be having.  They will indicate that this is an open interview and will list the location, date, and time of the interview.  Companies that hire seasonal workers or are in need of constant workers may have more frequent open interviews to accommodate their needs.

What To Wear To An Open Interview?

Though this is not a traditional interview, you should still dress to impress.  Wearing business professional clothing is preferred and will leave a better and long-lasting impression with the interviewer.  You should not wear unprofessional clothing or gym clothes.  In addition, you should ensure that your clothing is appropriate, clean, wrinkle-free, and professional.  You should wear business shoes that are clean and polished.

What To Bring To An Open Interview?

You will want to bring with you a number of printed resumes to provide to the interviewer.  Ensure that your contact information is up to date on those resumes in case the interviewer would like to extend an offer or continue speaking with you.  In addition, bring a notepad and a pen in case you need to jot down any notes or follow-ups.  Don’t forget to have a list of questions ready to ask the interviewer.

Lastly, be sure to take-down the interviewer’s name and email address so that you may send a follow-up thank you email after the interview.  As this will be an open interview and the interviewer will be meeting with multiple individuals and candidates, you should provide information about yourself and anything you may have discussed during the interview.  This will help the interviewer to remember your interview and to continue the conversation.

What Type Of Questions Are Expected?

Generally, the interviewer will look to get a sense of you as a candidate, including your previous work history and experience, your skills and qualifications, any high-school or college degrees you may have, and a list of certificates you may have completed.

Be prepared to discuss your qualifications and your work history.  The interviewer will be looking to see if you can handle and complete the requirements of the role.  Be prepared to provide answers via the S.T.A.R. Method.  This includes answering the specific situation, the task you were assigned, the actions you took, and the end-result.

In addition, you will likely be asked about why you want to work for the company, what you like or respect about the company, and why the interviewer should hire you versus the other candidates.  Be sure to conduct your research about the company beforehand to ensure you have the right answers to these questions.

How Long Will It Take?

Typically, for open interviews, there is generally a crowd of people waiting for their interview to begin.  As-such, it is recommended that you arrive early and leave ample room in case you need to wait for your interview to begin.  Expect to be at the location for a couple of hours until your interview is completed.

How Soon After Will I Know If I Got The Position?

This is difficult to know or answer.  Some open interviews provide the candidate with an answer immediately, whereas others will let the candidate know after all interviews are completed.  However, generally, most open interviews provide an answer relatively quickly.

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