You have spent hours pondering over your CV and cover letter and have proof read it a million times before you applied for the job. The time comes when the phone / email pings offering you the opportunity to come in for an interview. Great news! – but hold fire. Before you hastily send an abundance of dates and times of your earliest convenience, take a moment to consider the time and day you have suggested.
The interview is your time to shine so suggesting a meeting on Friday afternoon after lunchtime may not be a wise move. You need to consider what time of day would be suitable for the interviewer too. Early on Monday morning whilst they are rushed catching up with emails and waking up after a hectic weekend is not ideal.
Previously, author Kate Parham, after reviewing an Accountemps 2008 survey and Andrew Bradbury’s book, Successful Presentation Skills, determined that the best time to give a presentation is Tuesday morning around 10:30 a.m. Considering that the “best” presentation times and interview times are similar, then Tuesday morning could be a great time to arrange your interview.
If you consider the times of day as follows:
09.00 NO – too early.
10.00 You don’t want to be forgotten by the end of the day
11.00 A good choice as it lets the interviewer ponder over your responses as they eat lunch and they have also woken up following the morning coffee
13.00 Never a good idea. The interviewer may be in a food coma and ready for an afternoon nap
14.00 This is also a good choice. The interviewer would have been energised following the food and ready to crack on with the second part of the day
15.00 No later than 3pm just in case the interview runs over and the interviewer has things to do by the end of the day
Some top tips to take away with you:
- Avoid early morning meetings: Early mornings are great for holding someone’s attention, but you may want to avoid the first meeting of the morning because the interviewer may be preoccupied with other stuff like the second cup of coffee.
- Avoid the last meeting of the day: There are surely many things on the mind of the interviewer including priorities for the next work day, dinner plans, kids’ homework, etc. And, don’t even think about the end of the day on a Friday.
- Avoid pre or post-lunch meetings: Just before lunch or the first time slot after lunch are also problematic. Before lunch can leave you with a good interview being cut short and after lunch can find you waiting and waiting.
So, we advise you to think about the best time of day to present yourself. Interviewers are people too so don’t be the one holding them back from sneaking off to the pub on a Friday afternoon or seen as a ‘thing to do’ on a Monday morning.