Have you just had a call inviting you to come to interview tomorrow?
It’s not that unusual to get a call to interview with a day or two notice and certainly within the week.
Ridiculous I hear you cry don’t they know I have lectures, and assignments to hand in. Plus this is going to cost me a fortune at such short notice.
So why do they do it? There are lots of reasons which may apply ….
- If they start taking applications in September this is how long it takes to get it all sorted out.
- If they do it in January the weather could be worse and you have exams.
- Universities operate on different term/semester dates so what is a bad time for you could be fine for someone at another university. They are recruiting from all of them so they can’t win!
- They want strongly motivated candidates – if it’s a bit inconvenient they really aren’t bothered – do you want the job or not?
- They want candidates who are already prepared or who can perform on demand. Giving you a tight deadline to work to and some pressure may be like the job. They want people who can drop everything and get the job done when it matters.
What can you do?
- Prepare for the interview in advance – you had to do a lot of preparation for your application didn’t you? And you are probably applying for similar jobs at several companies. A lot of this will be transferable BUT do understand the differences between the companies you are applying to you can not afford to get this wrong.
- Make sure you check out the advice and videos on our website.
- Check out your travel arrangements in advance so that you know if it is possible to get there at the time they state and how much it will cost. Ask if they are reimbursing travel?
- If the weather is bad (REALLY bad not just a bit wet) check if trains are running and motorways open and check that the interviews will be going ahead. Who should you ring to check on the day or if you get delayed?
- If you have to hand in assignments or have exams on the interview dates ask if you can get a later date or have a telephone interview. Just understand that there are limits and it may not be possible to do this. Most companies are pretty accommodating though.
- Make sure your suit is clean pressed and ready just in case.
- Staying up all night to get the job done is not uncommon in some roles – so having to put in the hours to travel or prepare overnight for interview is par for the course. Stay calm and you can do this!
And no it’s not fair… that’s life.