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How long do interviews take?

How much time should you put aside for an interview? Well, it mainly depends on the type of interview. Read on to learn more.

How long do interviews take?

When it comes to finding a job, it’s important to have a good grasp on how long the interviews could take. The last thing you want to do is have to leave your first interview early because you’ve booked another interview that overlaps! Interviews are often made up of several rounds. And each round can take up a different amount of time.

Use our guide to work out how long your interview is likely to take.

How long does the average interview last?

An average interview usually takes 45-60 minutes. The first 15 minutes is usually spent going over introductions, company overview and general questions like ‘tell me about yourself’ and ‘what do you know about our company?’. The middle part of the interview will be the core interview questions which might be competency-based, and the last 15 minutes will be wrapping things up and getting your questions answered. But the length of the interview will also depend on the type of interview, industry and role. 

Psychometric tests

Average length: 10-30 minutes

Not strictly an interview but still an important part of the hiring process, psychometric tests 

have become a very common interviewing tool, especially for large corporations. Psychometric tests allow businesses to screen candidates without having to physically interview them. These tests can be used to assess various skills like your english, maths, analytical and leadership ability. Some tests can last longer than 30 minutes, but this is less common.

Group interviews

Average length: 1-3 hours

Group interviews usually last several hours. This is because there are so many job seekers participating in the interview and you’ll usually have several tasks to complete that assess various skills. Over the course of the interview, the hiring managers will be watching your behaviour to see how well you communicate with others, how well you work as a team, your leadership ability, and your ability to do the role.

Telephone interviews

Average length: 15-30 minutes

Telephone interviews are often the first point of contact you have with a hiring manager. They tend to be quite short and include a few screening questions to help the hiring manager decide whether to invite you in for an interview. The questions aren’t usually too in-depth, and the main focus of the call might just be to check your communication skills, basic experience and availability.

First interview

Average length: 45-60 minutes

Your first face-to-face interview will usually run for between 45-60 minutes although it’s not uncommon for them to last between 30-45 minutes. It’s less common for a first interview to last longer than an hour because the interviewers will want to save the tougher and more in-depth questions for the second interview. 

Final interview

Average length: 1-2 hours

You can expect your final interview to last for at least an hour. It usually takes place with 2 members of staff, sometimes including a CEO or Director. The interviewers will want to probe deeper into your answers to really put you to the test so it’s not so much that there are more questions, but that there’s more meat to your answers!

Final thoughts

Before you go, don’t forget these final interview tips:

  • Always write an acknowledgement email for the interview, asking the employer how long they expect the interview to last. 
  • A long interview is usually a good sign. If you’re out the door too quickly, it’s usually because you’re not right for the position.
  • Avoid booking interviews for the same day. It’s an exhausting process so you don’t want to tire yourself out and underperform!
  • Remember to cover other aspects of interview prep to give yourself the best chance of success!

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