HR Glossary / Structured Interview

A structured interview is a systematic approach to interviewing where the same questions and scale are used to assess the qualifications of candidates.


What Are Some Examples of Questions Asked During a Structured Interview?

Structured interviews can feature many types of questions (hard skill questions, soft skill questions, probing questions, etc.), as long as they are rated using the same scale. Examples of commonly asked interview questions include:

  • Describe your proudest accomplishment.
  • Tell me about a time when you had to help someone learn something.
  • What qualities are you looking for in a work colleague?
  • What makes you want to work here?
  • What leadership skills do you think every manager should have?
  • What do you know about our organization?
  • If you discovered that a colleague was stealing from the company, what would you do?
  • What was the last training or learning opportunity you had?

What Are the Advantages of a Structured Interview?

The advantages of a structured interview include:

  • Faster execution;
  • Analogous responses to facilitate candidate comparison;
  • Reduced interviewer bias;
  • Simplified interview process.

What Are the Disadvantages of a Structured Interview?

The disadvantages of a structured interview include:

  • Less flexibility;
  • Higher risk for subjective interpretation of the questions;
  • Increased interview preparation time;
  • Fewer personal or otherwise adapted questions.

What Is the Difference Between a Structured Interview and a Semi-structured Interview?

For structured interviews, all questions are produced and structured in advance. Every candidate is asked the same questions and in the same order so as to streamline the interview process.

For semi-structured interviews, the interviewers prepare only a few key predetermined questions. The rest of such interviews is more loosely defined to naturally flow toward what seems most appropriate to discuss with candidates. This method allows for more flexibility than the classically structured interview.

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