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Interview red flags

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    #11
    Originally posted by PerfectStorm View Post
    The best ones are the ones that talk about the project and spend the rest of the time getting a gauge for your personality/sense of humour/whether you pass the "beer test".
    I had one like this. 5 minutes on the 'role' and the rest of the interview on how the lady interviewing me had bright ginger hair and so did my daughter! We spent most of the time laughing about how mental 'gingies' were while the two guys on the panel just looked on bemused.

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      #12
      Originally posted by PerfectStorm View Post
      The more people on the panel, the higher number of interview stages, the more time asking questions about methodology - the crapper the gig
      agreed. best paid contract was on the back of a phone interview that lasted 23 minutes

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        #13
        Originally posted by PCTNN View Post

        agreed. best paid contract was on the back of a phone interview that lasted 23 minutes
        My 3 years at MS Consulting were on the back of 2 5 minute chats (I suspect that my detailed knowledge of an internal part of their product meant I was the best bet in Europe for a particular project - so the interview was more are you happy to fly round Europe).
        Last edited by eek; 29 April 2022, 11:22.
        merely at clientco for the entertainment

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          #14
          Originally posted by TheDude View Post

          There is a story about an MD at a bank I used to work at. He asked a candidate for a desk position what the hardest thing he had done was and he said he parachuted into a lake Afghanistan, swam one mile to shore, hiked to location xyz and with his team rescued three hostages after a firefight.

          The MD had failed to read the candidates CV and did not know he had just left the US Navy SEALs.
          Ah yes.

          I had one like this too, although minus the death defying aspects of the answer.

          I had an interview at Nominet whereby the leading lady was 20+ years Permanent in an unrelated industry and the other girl was something in HR. The lead asked me just Why I wanted to 'join' Nominet whereby, as a contractor I mentioned 'new industry', 'new experience', 'new ways of working', all of which did not answer in the way she had hopefully envisaged.

          'Have you not read about the company's successes, its values, its benefits to its staff?' I hadn't as multiple previous interviews had never bothered about such. Hoping to save the moment I asked, 'Ok, could you tell me what it was about my CV that inspired you to call me for interview?'

          'Oh, erm, I ah, I haven't really read your CV. Erm...'

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            #15
            Originally posted by simes View Post

            Ah yes.

            I had one like this too, although minus the death defying aspects of the answer.

            I had an interview at Nominet whereby the leading lady was 20+ years Permanent in an unrelated industry and the other girl was something in HR. The lead asked me just Why I wanted to 'join' Nominet whereby, as a contractor I mentioned 'new industry', 'new experience', 'new ways of working', all of which did not answer in the way she had hopefully envisaged.

            'Have you not read about the company's successes, its values, its benefits to its staff?' I hadn't as multiple previous interviews had never bothered about such. Hoping to save the moment I asked, 'Ok, could you tell me what it was about my CV that inspired you to call me for interview?'

            'Oh, erm, I ah, I haven't really read your CV. Erm...'
            I've had this twice but in both cases it was a face fit interview. Once with two interviewers and once with just one lady. It was immediately obvious in the introduction none of them were closely related to the actual work and were more business and their client interface related. None had read my CV and there was no need to as they weren't going in to my skills, just to assess whether my face fitted along with other soft skills. Not uncommon to be interviewed by someone who hasn't read your CV as long as you can think on your feet and understand what the interviewees do and what they are after. You'd have to think about what the 20+ years lady did and what she was after to understand if either needed to actually know what was on your CV but all in all it sounds like neither were interviewing for a contractor.
            'CUK forum personality of 2011 - Winner - Yes really!!!!

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              #16
              I find that the more levels of interview, the lower the chance. I had one last year where I had phone interview with HR, then manager, then three staff members. Didn't get the role and no feed back either.

              I had a pre-covid interview which was for a role that didn't really suit my skill set very closely. The interview was 120 miles from home, at 5pm on a Friday. I nearly didn't go, but after 30 minutes chat the manager said 'I am only interviewing you, so if you want it, it is yours' That was 10 months on a good rate. Glad I made the effort.

              I have never done well in interviews where HR have someone sitting in an asking standard HR questions - mostly irrelevant for a contractor interview. Maybe trying to look up her skirt didn't help either......

              Best one was an eight minute chat for a local contract with the hiring manager and started a few days later.

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                #17
                Originally posted by TheDude View Post
                I just had a technical interview and almost every question was incredibly specific - i.e. 'Which class, method, codec etc".

                When I answered questions in depth it was clear the interviewers had very little expertise in the technologies involved and were reading from a script.

                Whilst the rate is very attractive the process did not reflect well on the competence of the team I would potentially be joining.

                What red flags have you picked up from interviews?

                I also interviewed face to face for a startup. The hipster that interviewed me took his shoes off and put his feet on the desk and halfway through proceeding grabbed a beer from the fridge. They disappeared a few months later and the founders probably regretted spending so much on Apple hardware.
                A number of red flags at interview, 2 were with Yorkshire Electricity!

                First one, 2 snot nosed kids, 20 somethings interviewed me and the first question out of the muppet's mouth was 'Why do you want to work for Yorkshire Electricity?' I said sorry, is there some confusion, I understood the role was a contract one and not permanent? They both looked flustered. I didnt proceed the role.

                Second one again at Yorkshire Electricty, this time at the Scarcroft site, turned up for interview, met by 2 guys. They explained the TM was 'too busy' so asked them to conduct the interview. They just told me what the job was and said 'does it appeal to you and can you do it?' I spent the rest of the 'interview' interviewing them about the role and project.

                I accepted the role but should have known better. Nina the TM was absolutely hopeless at management. She had no idea how to manage her own time never mind a project. And she blamed everyone else for her failings. I decided to leave at the end of the contract.

                Oh, almost forgot, another one with Landis and Gyr, smart meter manufacturers in Stockport. They dillied and dallied about an interview for about 8 weeks. Was on the verge of telling the agent forget it when they finally arranged an interview. The TM had been on long term sick and just come back to work, hence the delay with the interview.

                At interview the TM kicked off about my cv and said as far as he was concerned I didnt have the experience he was looking for. I said his co's agent had seen my cv, submitted it via his co's HR and his acting deputy considered I did have the skillset. He was adamant I didnt so I said if you thought this, why have you dragged me out on a 100 mile round trip and wasted both our time?

                He looked blank and said well we'll proceed with the interview and see how it goes. I said Im sorry, I really dont see the point of wasting another hour of my time on top of the near 3 hours travel time, could you escort me out of the building?

                I got onto the agent and gave him a bollocking after all the run around I got. He apologised and said the TM had just got back to work after a nervous breakdown. I said he's going to have another because he hasnt a clue what he's doing!
                I couldn't give two fornicators! Yes, really!

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                  #18
                  Originally posted by BolshieBastard View Post

                  Second one again at Yorkshire Electricty, this time at the Scarcroft site, turned up for interview, met by 2 guys. They explained the TM was 'too busy' so asked them to conduct the interview. They just told me what the job was and said 'does it appeal to you and can you do it?' I spent the rest of the 'interview' interviewing them about the role and project.
                  That reminds me of a contract I went for in West London at a large pharma. Was supposed to be meeting the IT director, I turned up and the receptionist was a bit surprised/unsure of what to do, so I was given a coffee and shown to a seat in a waiting area. About 10 minutes later, after a few other people have walked past and said hello, asked who I was there to see, then gone away, the next person to appear is the finance director.
                  It appears the IT director had been escorted off site about half an hour before I turned up, and while an interview (of sorts) then took place, none of those involved knew what the role was. At one point they asked if I'd ever considered taking a permanent role as an IT director. I politely declined.
                  {emotionless greeting}

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                    #19
                    Never done a stint where the job interview questions are along the lines of "What is your main weakness?" or "Where do you see yourself in 5 years?".

                    Absolute standard lazy questioning in my view and the 2nd one particularly irrelevant to a contractor

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                      #20
                      Originally posted by IVR247 View Post
                      I find that the more levels of interview, the lower the chance.
                      True. I always ask to the agent how many interview stages there are before I agree to have my cv sent over. For contract roles, I say no to any roles where the process is more than 1 interview. For permanent roles, I say not to any roles where the process is more than 2 interviews.

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