Congratulations! You got that second interview. Now, what should you expect and how should you prepare? 

The Next Steps in the Interview Process

Different companies will have different processes for the second interview. It may be in the form of a panel interview with more senior executives or potential team members. The person you originally met with also may or may not be present. You could also just meet with one new interviewer. 

The main focus, regardless of the interview scenario, is to show and expand upon your knowledge for this new role. While the prior interview reviews the resume and the basic skills needed, the second interview is typically for hiring managers to gain insight into the candidate and will involve more detail.

Preparation for the Second Job Interview

You will most likely get the name of the person or persons your second-round interview will be with. Prepare for this by researching their background with the company and how they make an impact. Use those anecdotes to assess what they may ask you about. Review any interview questions you previously prepared earlier in the hiring process as they may still come up.

What to Discuss with the Hiring Manager

Some questions in the second round (especially with a new interviewer) will be vaguely similar to what you may have been asked in the first. Think of this as completing an "I’m not a robot" CAPTCHA. The main idea is to show more of an authentic side as you answer questions. These follow-up questions can be more performance based and try to really capture your job performance. If it is a question that would provide a similar response to what you have already said, reference that. State that you already answered it by saying something along the lines of, “As I mentioned to [insert name here]…” and then repeat your answer. 

That being said, second interviews are for the new potential employer to assess your skills as they relate to your business acumen. A lot of the questions are going to be delivered in a more analytical way and are typically designed to help the hiring manager ultimately decide who the best person for the job will be. Be prepared for this by using some information gained in the initial interview to cultivate your answers. 

Say, for example, that in your previous meeting you discovered that your new position is going to be heavy in marketing and that is a major need for the current company. Prepare to go into that second interview confident and ready with example answers about how successful you have been in marketing campaigns, display your marketing skills, and outline exactly what you can do in this new role.

Research is Key

Continue to research the company culture and learn about the people in the various roles. The company website is still a great resource when prepping for a second-round interview. It is a huge plus to go into this with good follow-up questions. As this may not be as long as the first interview on the potential employer’s side, you can keep with ideas and questions you may not have remembered to ask. 

You can always find more interview and job search process insights to help you meet your career goals on our advice page

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