8 Things to Expect From a Second Interview

A job seeker hands a hiring manager his resume during a second interview

Congratulations! You’ve been asked back for a second interview. At this point, you're being seriously considered for the position based on your success in the first interview.

You were well-prepared for the initial meeting, but what should you anticipate for this round?

It's best to be prepared for anything. Here are eight things to anticipate during your second interview:

1. Expect new faces

Your interview will probably give you the chance to meet different people from those you met during round one. Sometimes a business will conduct a panel interview so several people can get to know you at the same time. Either way, you’ll see some new faces, which may include a mix of senior executives, managers and potential coworkers.

2. Expect to discuss specifics

During the second interview, your potential employer wants to know the person they’re interviewing is the same one who’s represented on your resume. Be ready to talk specifically about your recent work history. Know your potential employer inside and out. Expect targeted questions like, “If you got the job, what would you do in your first year to establish yourself?” and answer each one honestly.

3. Expect to tie up loose ends

Was there a question from the interview that you didn’t answer fully? Or did the interviewer mention that he wanted to cover a topic but ran out of time? Remember those loose ends from the first interview. Prepare for them so you can respond more fully during the second interview.

4. Expect tricky questions

“If you were stranded on an island, which typefont would you want to have with you? And why?” Employers enjoy asking these off-the-wall questions to see how well you answer. Plus, these questions test your problem-solving skills and reveal a bit of your personality.

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5. Expect to ask lots of questions

During your second interview, you’ll have the chance to ask many more questions than you did during your first interview. That’s good because you’ll probably think of more questions as you learn more about the company, employees and the job itself. Write down your questions as you think of them to prepare you for the second interview.

6. Expect to talk money

While it’s not always the case, the interviewer may bring up compensation and benefits during the second interview. Wait until your potential employer mentions it first, but be prepared. Find out what your skills and experience are worth. Research your potential employer to see if they’re financially sound enough to bargain. Consider all aspects of the job and what they’re worth to you. Show the interviewer your value. And if you agree on terms, get it in writing.

7. Expect to tour the facility

After the Q&A portion of the interview, your potential employer may give you a tour of the facility. You’ll probably be introduced to potential colleagues, see how the firm is set up and where your office may be. This is your chance to express as much interest as possible in the company’s operations. Candidates have lost their running at this stage if they appear bored or inattentive.

8. Expect to discuss next steps

At the end of the second interview, expect the interviewer to tell you what happens next and when you can hear from them. Or they could offer you the position on the spot. If they do, you don’t typically have to decide right then, unless you’re certain you want the job. Otherwise, let them know you want time to decide and when they should expect to hear from you. If they don’t mention next steps, be sure to ask when they will be in touch or if you should follow up. And remember, as with the first interview, be sure to send a thank you note to each person you interviewed with.

Have any tips on how to prepare for a second interview? Let us know in the comments section.

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Tags: Interviewing