Some Interview Red Flags to Watch Out for During Hiring Process
Notice these interview red flags to avoid getting trapped in a wrong organization
When you’re interviewing, it can seem like a never-ending practice in convincing people that you’re qualified for the job. And while you should, of course, always put your best foot forward, show up on time and be professional, it’s important to remember that while they are interviewing you to see if it’s a good fit, you’re doing the same with the company.
An interview should go both ways — they ask you questions, and you ask them questions. The only way you’ll know if it’s a company you actually want to work at is if you learn more about the culture, visit the office, and have an opportunity to ask more about the open role.
So, when you’re in an interview be on high alert. Being in the office and around a company’s current employees is a great way to feel a company out. And while we don’t want to be negative, here are a few interview red flags to watch out for that may indicate you should keep job searching.
Watch Out These Interview Red Flags
They Are Late
It’s common practice to arrive at an interview five to 10 minutes early to give yourself a buffer and a chance to sign in if needed. If you arrive earlier than that, take a walk around the block or hang out in your car for a few minutes so you don’t pressure the interviewer or sit in reception for too long. But, that being said, if your interviewer leaves you waiting for a significant amount of time past your appointment, that should be your first interview red flag.
If someone is a few minutes late, you can assume a meeting ran long, they were doing final preparations for the interview or the conference room wasn’t free yet. But, if someone is more than 20 minutes late, they aren’t respecting your time. And if they aren’t respecting your time now, it’s a good bet they don’t respect their employees’ time either. If you’re someone that is chronically late, too, this may not bother you, but it’s a good thing to note before taking any next steps in the interview process.
They Are Unprepared
You should always bring a hard copy of your resume to an interview, even these days. Most interviewers will have it printed or pulled up on a device, but if they ask you for a copy you don’t want to be caught empty-handed. This is not them being unprepared.
But, if the interviewer seems to be pulling questions out of thin air, has clearly not read through your resume until that moment, or is distracted. Then it’s one of the interview red flags that mean you’re not really their priority. And in an interview, you should get their undivided attention. After all, they are representing the company and need to also put their best foot forward. If you feel like the interviewer is unprepared then it’s likely a pattern, and you could be the one picking up slack in meetings or presentations should you accept an offer to work there.
There is No Structure (One of the major interview red flags to look for)
Typically, if you go into a company’s office for an interview, you will be meeting with multiple people. This is the easiest way for them to use both your time and their time wisely. Ideally, the recruiter or person you’ve been coordinating with will send you a list of people and times you’ll be meeting each of them. If not, it’s not an immediate concern.
However, if you arrive at the office and it’s clear no one has thought about where you’re meeting, at what times, in what order, etc. it’s not a great sign. An interview is planned, so there was ample time for schedule coordination, room booking and other preparations to be made.
Bottom line: if a company isn’t putting its best foot forward when interviewing someone, you probably don’t want to know what it’s like to work there day-to-day. In fact, they’re probably giving you a small glimpse into their office culture, so if any of these situations are interview red flags to you, don’t walk, run.