Companies interview in many different ways. Some companies give behavioral interviews. Some companies give logic tests. Some companies give standard interviews using interview questions they read on some blog (hello!). Companies choose their applicants in many different ways.
One thing they all have in common, however, is that they all have at least 2 interviews. There is almost no company that hires after a single interview, no matter how impressed they are with a candidate. Why is that? Why do companies always hold at least a second interview?
Purpose of Job Interviews
First and second interviews, while similar, have very different purposes to a company. More than one applicant is called in for a first interview. That means that several applicants – sometimes as many as 10 – are all competing for the same job. During that interview, employers are looking to who to cut and who to keep. They are not necessarily considering whether you are perfect for the job. They are considering whether you are better than the other applicants.
The second interview, then, is used after the other applicants have been cut. During this interview, the company knows that you are better than the other applicants, and are now trying to see if you are the right person for the job. That is a completely different mindset. They know you were a better fit than the first round of applicants, but they do not know if you are the right fit. So now that they have narrowed the number down to you (and maybe one or two other applicants), they are now looking to see if the job should be yours.
Above represents the primary reasons that all companies go through second interviews. Additional reasons include:
- Chance to meet with other interviewers, including department interviews.
- All applicants come with doubts. Employers can address those doubts.
- First interviews are usually shorter to try to fit in more applicants.
- Employer has a good idea how you should compare in skills to other applicants.
- You have a chance to reflect on thoughts and questions that you can address at the second interview.
Interviews have more than one purpose. As such, there will always be a second interview to ensure that you are the right candidate for the job.
Take Away Interview tips
- First interviews and second interviews each have a different purpose/mindset.