Why you should always attend an interview if requested
1. Fact finding exercise – how do you know if you don’t go?
By attending the interview, you are not necessarily committing to the position or the company, you are committing to the process. Treat it as an opportunity to find out more about the company, the role and the interviewers. People often worry that they will be waiting the interviewers time by attending if they are not sure about the position, but this is not the case. It is a fact finding exercise for both parties to learn more before making any decisions. In my experience, I have had many candidates who later lived to regret the fact they turned down an interview because they interviewed elsewhere and thought that went well etc but the fact remains, how do you know if you don’t go? Avoid putting all your eggs into one basket!
2. Shutting the door on a potential opportunity
An interview is an opportunity. It’s a prospect. It’s a chance. You might be unsure about the position and so even more reason you should go and find out. Often if you are going through a recruiter, we are only provided with the initial and brief information (particularly if there is no formal job description) so why not go and speak directly with the hiring manager of the company to get an informative insight into the position and the technical details? If you decline an interview, you could be closing the door on a potentially enlightening opportunity.
3. Could be other suitable positions internally
On so many occasions, we have had candidates attend an interview for one position and then the employer decided they are either too junior or too senior but like their experience and offer them another position which neither the candidate nor we anticipated. The employer could have other upcoming positions that they could consider you for or even better, create one!
4. Gives a bad impression if you don’t see out the process
If you have committed to yourself or to an agency to send your resume to an employer for a position ad have potentially undertaken one round of interviews already, you have indicated that you are willing to see out the process. Of course if you have already secured another opportunity then this would not apply but if you are still job seeking, the employer can often take this as a bad sign, wondering how serious and committed you are to your job search. You never want to appear to be someone who is ‘flaky’ or ‘unprofessional’ if you cancel last minute. Scheduling interviews, especially if with more than one manager can be a timely process and if you cancel, it can be frustrating for all parties involved. If you then decided in the future that you would actually like to explore opportunities with the same company, their initial experience could mean you would not be considered as a viable candidate.
5. Good practice – challenge
Interviewing for anyone, can be a daunting and nerve-racking experience. However it is typically a necessary part of the recruitment process so it is always good practice to get in front of people and sell your skillset. It can be a challenging exercise but even if in the worst case scenario, it does not work out how you had hoped, you might be surprised of how much you actually learn from the experience and about yourself. Take up the challenge!
Written by Chelsea Flynn, Senior Recruiter