types of interview

Types of Interviews: A Brief Guide for Recruiters

Kelly Barcelos on March 12, 2021 in Glossary

For employers and recruiters, the interview process is the single most important part of the candidate selection process. In the interviews, the candidate’s employability skills are tested to gauge whether the candidate is a fit for the particular job or not. A lot of time, effort, and resources go into the hiring process. Therefore, interviews need to be as foolproof as possible to get good candidates in one go. The best way to recruit an ideal candidate is to choose the correct type of interviews that suits the hiring team, the company, and the candidate.

What Are The Types of Interviews?

Each job role is different; hence the interview style should also be different. Various interview styles are followed worldwide. This guide will go through some of the most popular types of interviews for recruitment and beyond. Let’s get started.

  1. Based on the Number of Interviewers

    • Panel Interview

      Panel interviews involve a group of recruiters interviewing a single candidate. These types of interviews are commonly seen at college placements and can be in-person or video interviews. Panel interviews are particularly important if the selected candidate needs to report to more than one person, or if the position is for an advanced role, or when the candidate is at the ending stage of the hiring process. One of the main objectives of panel interviews is that each recruiter can form an objective opinion of the candidates by noticing their characteristics, strengths, and weaknesses.

    • Individual Interview

      Individual interviews are the most common and effective forms of interviewing. This type of interview allows both candidate and the recruiter to know each other on a personal level. The individual interview is usually held at the workplace itself and is typically reserved for the candidates that the employer is serious about.

  2. Based On The Type of Interview Questions

    • Structured Interview

      In this type of interview, the same set of questions is asked to every candidate. The questions test various skills such as team spirit, communication skills, consensus-building, and interpersonal skills. The interviewer scores the candidates depending on the answers they give. The candidate who scores the maximum is the preferred candidate.

    • Semi-Structured Interview

      In a semi-structured interview, the interviewer does not stick to a standard list of questions. Instead, they prefer to ask more open-ended questions that open up an opportunity for discussions.

    • Unstructured Interview

      An unstructured interview can be a mix of planned and unplanned questions, and these differ from candidate to candidate. Some unplanned questions can crop up as per the candidate’s response. These questions can effectively gauge the candidate’s understanding and capability.

  3. Based on the Skillset the Interviewer Wants to Test

    • Competency Interview or Task-Oriented Interview

      This type of interview is specifically developed to test the candidate’s competency in a job-related skill. A competency interview helps the firm to decide on the most skilled candidate for the job. Such interviews are most commonly used to test the suitability of junior-level candidates and may not be as effective in hiring for a higher level.

    • Stress Interview

      This interview style was used to detect how a candidate responded under pressure. But today, hiring processes have evolved, and practical and sophisticated interviews are preferred to stress interviews.

    • Psychometric Interview

      Psychometric tests are typically used before the interview process. This helps in screening out unsuitable candidates or in deciding the best candidate from the few final ones. Some companies may also use psychometric tests on their existing employees for training and development and internal recruitment.

    • Behavioral-Based Interview

      Behavioural-based interviewing is based on discovering how the candidate acted in specific employment-related situations. This type of interview predicts the future performance of a candidate based on the candidate’s past behavior in various job-related situations.

    • Scenario-Based Interview

      The situational interview is apt for experienced job applicants. In this type of interview, the recruiter creates a hypothetical situation and expects the candidates to explain how they would handle the situation.

  4. Based on the Interviewer

    • Technical Interview

      The technical interview is a pre-qualification screening for a job. In this interview type, the technical skills of the candidate are tested. The technical interview may contain multiple parts and hence can be time-consuming.

    • HR Interview

      HR interview is the initial screening phase of the hiring process. In this interview type, the HR professional asks the candidates a set of HR interview questions to clarify various points about their resume and application and also to gauge the candidates’ basic skills and interest in the role. The shortlisted candidates are then put through other types of interviews.

  5. Based on the Number of People Being Interviewed

    • Personal Interview

      This is the most common type of interview, where a solo interviewer asks a series of questions to a solo candidate. The questions are designed to assess whether the candidate is a good fit for the job.

    • Group Interview

      Although not so popular, group interviews are used for recruiting candidates. Here, a set of questions is asked to a group of candidates. Candidates normally compete to give the answers, and the interview is usually followed by group activities. This type of interview is ideal if the skills assessed include teamwork, competition, and response to stress.

  6. Based on the Medium of the Interview

    • Telephone Interview

      Telephonic interviews are a quick and convenient way to assess the job suitability of candidates. These interviews are generally preferred when the job applicants are in large number, candidates live out-of-town, or time is a constraint.

    • Face-to-Face Interview

      Generally, a face-to-face interview is the last phase of the hiring process. A candidate who has made it this far is qualified for the job. This interview helps to determine which one of the shortlisted candidates is the best fit.

    • Video Interview

      A video interview is an excellent alternative to telephonic interviews. In this interview type, both the employer and candidate can see each other. This helps add professionalism and is especially helpful in interviewing candidates in remote locations.

  7. Based on the Location of the Interview

    • On-Site Interview/Formal Interview

      A formal interview is a one-on-one meeting usually held at the workplace (on-site) between a prospective job candidate and employer.

    • Informal Interview or The Lunch/Dinner Interview

      Informal interviews are a one-on-one meeting that doesn’t take place in the office but at a restaurant where the employer and the candidate meet for lunch or dinner. In this informal atmosphere, the interviewer gets to assess the candidate’s social skills, manners, and how they fit in the company culture.

  8. Based on the Purpose of the Interview

    • Screening Interview

      A screening interview is usually a phone call or in-person meeting conducted by the HR professional to gauge how qualified the candidate is for the job. It is typically the first interview in the hiring process as it successfully weeds out unsuitable candidates from the suitable ones.

    • Second Interview

      A second interview helps employers find out more about the candidate after the initial interview. It allows employers to compare the shortlisted candidates more closely. However, not all employers use second interviews, but they are a standard for competitive roles.

    • Recruitment Interview

      Recruitment interviews are conducted with the purpose of filling an open role in the company. This type of interview help in selecting the right candidate from a group of applicants who applied for a job.

    • Appraisal Interview

      An appraisal interview is a formal discussion that usually happens annually. It is a process between an employee and his/her reporting manager. An appraisal interview is a general feedback on an employee’s work performance on the basis of which salary increment, career progression, or job promotion is decided.

    • Exit Interview

      An exit interview is usually a conversation between an exiting employee and an HR representative. This interview type gives an opportunity to get feedback on the company’s policy, direction and employee’s job satisfaction from the employee leaving the organization.


Ultimately, there is no one perfect way to recruit an ideal candidate. The right type of interview is the one that suits the candidate, your firm, and the hiring manager. Whichever interview style you choose, make sure that it puts both parties at ease and gives them an opportunity to have an honest and transparent conversation that paves a path for a long-term association.

Kelly Barcelos

Kelly Barcelos is a progressive digital marketing manager specializing in HR and is responsible for leading Jobsoid’s content and social media team. When Kelly is not building campaigns, she is busy creating content and preparing PR topics. She started with Jobsoid as a social media strategist and eventually took over the entire digital marketing team with her innovative approach and technical expertise.