Criteria Based Interview: What It Is and What It Involves

Criteria Based Interview: What It Is and What It Involves

Interviews stage, Job Search, NEED ADVICE

Great news! you have been invited for a Criteria based interview. But what is it? It can be described as a type of interview that is centered on the important capabilities of the job or a category of jobs that a candidate is being considered against. It assesses a combination of four things: your skills, your knowledge, your conduct, and your personal qualities.

The style in which it is conducted may not be familiar since it is not meant to delve into details of your career history. Instead, it is focused on collecting information about your behavior at work. Each candidate that is being interviewed for a specific position is asked the exact structured questions. Each question is designed to look for particular examples of the way you have conducted yourself in different circumstances. These details are compiled and measured up to each “benchmark” linked to the role.  This acts as a way of providing a fair basis for interviewers to make comparison.

You are asked questions which are directly connected to skills that you will need to match the criteria of the role.  An interview of this kind makes sure that objectivity, structure and consistency are factored in.

For instance, to help gauge your judgment and confidence, you might be asked to tell interviewers about an instance when you supported your own decision in spite of opposition from your colleagues. Or you could be asked to describe how you have contributed to a team you have worked with in the recent past to enable the interviewers to get an idea of your teamwork abilities.

How You Should Structure Your Answers

Actually, your interviewer does not want you to provide theoretical ideas about the way you can do something but will expect you to give examples of your actual conduct at work. That is why you should not be worried if you need a bit of time to think of an appropriate example to provide because you will actually be given time to think. On nearly every occasion, you will be informed about the skills that are being explored as you go through the interview. As such, you will be able to provide focused answers. It is advisable to try to focus your answers always as this will help you make maximum use of your time.  Besides, you should bear in mind that in an interview, it is not the quantity but quality of your response that matters. That is why you should always try to answer only those questions you are asked.

How to Prepare Yourself

When getting set for an interview, it may be important for you to think about your career so far. You need to concentrate on major work experiences plus any projects you have taken part in and your usual mode of approach to your work.  You may have some major achievements which you may wish to refer to at some point during the interview and you will probably find it useful to make a mental note of them. In fact, there are people who prefer to carry with them some written notes to the interview so that they can refer to them at some stage. While this is permitted, on the other hand, experience has proved that having tons of notes to refer to is likely to interfere with the flow of the interview.


You will be provided with further details in regards to the structure of your interview by your interviewer on the very day. The interview is tailored to find as much information about you as possible and not to trick you. It is helpful in ensuring that proper decisions are made in your own interest as well as your potential employer’s.  So, the best thing to do is just relax and be yourself. People may find the interview itself stressful, but most of them realise that the process helps them learn a great deal about themselves regardless of the result.  This is especially if they capitalize on any feedback they are offered.


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