5 candidates reveal NIGHTMARE interview experiences

5 candidates reveal NIGHTMARE interview experiences

Sometimes there’s nothing a candidate can do before an interview to truly prepare them for what lies ahead. No amount of research or time spent analysing interview techniques can really help them for the strange situation lying behind that door.

A recent article in The Metro detailed the bizarre interview experiences of confused candidates: from the rude to the downright creepy. We’ve listed our favourite five below. Tell us your strangest interview experience in the comments.

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  • Steven
    Sat, 11 Nov 2017 2:35pm GMT
    In twenty-plus years of a professional career, I have more than a few job interview stories that still leave me bemused and bewildered, but one that really shows up poor recruitment practice happened about ten years ago.

    I had travelled a 400 mile round trip at my own expense to attend an interview with a prestigious employer in my particular field. When I got there I was met by the recruitment agent, who spent the next hour or so showing me around the large facility, explaining what the job entailed, how they operated and even what the pay and conditions were. He gave the distinct impression that his agency was the de facto exclusive supplier of candidates to this organisation; he certainly had free-run of the place, and seemed to be on familiar terms with all of the staff we encountered. Finally, he explained to me that I was a perfect fit for the job, the only candidate he was putting forward, and that if the head of the engineering department had not been off ill at the time, we would have been meeting him that day too. Naturally I took this as an incredibly positive sign, and that all I had to do was wait for the Chief Engineer to return to work so we could take it to the next step.

    Nearly two months later I finally got invited back for what I though was the second interview. It turns out this was, in their eyes, only the *first* interview….and there were two other candidates for the job to boot! Although I was caught somewhat off-guard, I gave it my best shot. Afterwards, I spent several more weeks waiting for an answer via the recruitment agent; even though he was on paternity leave, he had absolutely assured me that he was never far from his Blackberry. I couldn’t get hold of him at all, neither by email or phone, and no-one in his office could apparently answer the simple question of “did I get the job?”. Eventually I had an offer on the table from somewhere else, and just to confirm that I wasn’t going to miss out on a fantastic opportunity, I rang the employer directly to get a definitive answer. It turns out that they had made their decision within a few days of the interview, and immediately told the recruitment agency of this.

    My only conclusion is that this recruitment chap was so embarrassed about buttering me up for a role that wasn’t his to deliver, wasting my time and no small amount of money, that he was simply ignoring me until I got bored and went away.

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