How To Choose The Best Time Slot For Job Interviews

H.R. Team generally works with the hiring manager to set up interview time slots for the shortlisted candidates. If you’re one of the shortlisted candidates, the H.R. team will contact you to set up the interview day and time.

Is it better to schedule your interview as early as possible? Absolutely, yes – because the candidate who comes first always gets the advantage of making the best first impression and goes on to the next stages of the interview.

So how which time slot is best for your job interview?

Mid-mornings and early afternoons are the ideal time slots for job interviews. And Tuesdays to Thursdays are ideal days to schedule job interviews. This applies if you are given the option to select your interview day and time slot.

Infographics - How To Choose The Best Time Slot For Job Interviews
Best Interview Time Slots

Before you finalize your interview time slots with the H.R. team, it’s good to know the favorable time slots, favorable days of the week, and pros and cons that would help you make an informed decision.

This article will give you an in-depth understanding of how the right days and time slots could influence your interviews and interview outcomes.

What’s the Best Interview Time Slot?

What's the Best Interview Time Slot
Choose the Best Interview Time Slot

An interview time slot is the time duration where the hiring manager interviews you to assess if you’re fit for the job opening and the organization’s culture.

Usually, it varies from 30 minutes to an hour, and employers might have several shortlisted candidates lined up for an interview.

It’s important to understand the various strategies that can help you land a job. Scheduling interviews on the right day and time may result in a positive interview experience and could help you land the job offer.

There are specific days and times when candidates can create a more positive impact on the interviewer and enhance their chances of landing a job.

Remember, not every candidate gets an option to select interview time slots. It could depend on factors like the general economic climate, demand and supply of jobs, number of applicants vs job openings etc.

If you’re lucky to get asked for options to pick an interview time or day, keep in mind the below tips which could come in handy:

  • Pick Tuesday to Thursday as your interview day
  • Pick mid-morning and early afternoons as your interview time slot.
  • In case your interview is scheduled on Friday, select mid-morning as your interview time slot. Avoid Friday afternoons.

In the rest of this article, we will go into more detail on why these days and times are ideal for interviews and how this selection would create a favorable interview outcome.

What is the Best Day of the Week to Interview?

What is the Best Day of the Week to Interview
Best Day to Interview

When it comes to interviews, it benefits you to think from the interviewer’s perspective as well. Mondays are usually hectic days of the week, and hiring managers would have a lot of tasks on their plate to get done, as well as plan for the week ahead.

They might not be able to give you their undivided focus during the interview, which could potentially hurt your chances to ace the interview.

Having said that, it’s not always true that “Mondays are bad for interviews” – but if there’s even a remote chance of your interview getting impacted, why take the chance?

Tuesday to Thursday is the Best Interview Day of the Week

  • Avoid Monday, if possible – Monday is usually the busiest day of the week where hiring managers could be busy getting to speed after the weekend, preparing plans, and setting priorities to get a good start for the rest of the week.

  • Avoid Friday Afternoons – Friday afternoons are similar to Mondays, though in a different way – where people are trying to wind down after a week of hard work.

  • Pick Tuesday to Thursday – If you’re given a choice, pick Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday for your interview slot. Try to avoid the rest of the work days.

  • Friday Morning Slot – If you have been assigned Friday as your interview day, see if you can choose a morning slot that could still work to your advantage.

It’s best to avoid Mondays for interviews, when people are at their busiest. Best days for interview are Tuesday to Thursday

What Time of Day is Best for a Job Interview?

What Time of Day is Best for Job Interview
Best Time for Interview

After selecting the interview day, the next step is to select your interview time slot. But is there really a good and not-so-good interview time slot? Let’s get this cleared in this article.

Morning hours are when people have the most energy to get a major chunk of their work done. And that’s why it’s always recommended to get the complex and brain-crunching work done during the early hours of the day.

This is true for hiring managers as well. There are only so many decision points a person can make during the day before fatigue sets. The best time to schedule your interview is before the recruiter gets exhausted with the day’s work.

The key is to think from the hiring manager’s perspective. They’re also employees of a company, and they’ve work to get done and targets to achieve during the day.

Below are key take-aways while selecting your interview time slots:

  • Schedule your interview time slots around mid-morning to early afternoon.
  • Early mornings are busy hours for hiring managers – try to avoid that time slot.
  • By mid-morning, the rush has subsided, and distractions are minimal.
  • Early afternoon is the next best time slot after mid-morning.
  • Late afternoons are not ideal, because the hiring manager might be trying to wind down for the day and could rush through your interview.
  • In addition, decision fatigue could also cause your interviewer not to form a great impression about you, even if you feel that your interview went well. Avoid late afternoon interviews, if possible.

Mid-mornings and Early-Afternoons from Tuesday to Thursday are ideal interview time slots, if you’re given the option to select a slot. Choose wisely.

Should You Pick the First or Last Interview Slot?

Should You Pick the First or Last Interview Slot?
Picking Interview Time Slot

Recruiters would have few resumes shortlisted for interviews during the day, and does it matter if you’re interviewed first or middle or last?

In general, it doesn’t really matter if you go first or last because a lot depends on the number and quality of candidates being interviewed.

If you interview first, you might become the benchmark to grade other candidates, and if any candidate outperforms you, they become the new benchmark. The same is true if you get interviewed last – you would get compared against the latest benchmarked candidate.

One dis-advantage of going in first might be that the hiring manager might not be prepared for interview questions fully, and might just ask “Tell me about yourself” and “Why are you interested in the job” type questions.

But as the interview progresses with other candidates, the interviewer might ask more in-depth questions. If the candidate replies satisfactorily, it might feel as if the candidate has more skills and knowledge. But in fact, you were never asked these questions in the first place.

An advantage of going last is that the interviewer is able to ask the full set of questions to assess a candidate satisfactorily, and the last candidate is also fresh in the interviewer’s mind. This could enhance the candidate’s chances of grabbing that job offer.

To summarize, even though we could see some advantages and disadvantages of going last vs. first in an interview, it’s not possible to generalize this theory because it depends on so many other subtle factors.

In conclusion, it’s best not to worry about getting interviewed first or last. Factors affecting the results may be difficult to generalize, and are beyond our control. Focus on giving your best shot at your interview.

How do you Respond to an Interview Time Slot Request?

How do I Answer an Interview Time Slot
Interview Time Slot Response

So the interviewer has contacted you and asked you for your available time slots for the interview. This is an awesome situation as you’re about to go to the next step of the conversation.

Key points to remember when sending replying to the hiring manager:

  • Keep your response professional and positive. Don’t type in your response immediately if you’re stressed or worried at that moment. Take a break, take some time to relax and cheer up, and type in your response mail.

  • Send your response on the same day. Don’t wait for a few days before sending out your reply. Interviewers might also be contacting other candidates, and you could miss out on slots or even the opportunity if you delay your response.

  • Clearly indicate your preferred date and time slots. If the interviewer gives you the option to select a date and time slot, choose the earliest available and best option that works for you. If you can choose Tuesday to Thursday, mid-morning or early afternoons, you’re in for a great start.

The interviewers could ask for your dates and time slots when you’re available for an interview. Below is a sample of how you could respond to the employer with your dates and time slots.

Dear Mr. Smith,

Thank you for the interview opportunity with [company name].

I wanted to confirm, below, my available time slots for the interview. Kindly let me know if any of these slots works for you.

Tuesday, 10 May at 10.30am

Wednesday, 11 May at 2pm

Thursday, 12 May at 10.30am

I appreciate the opportunity to talk with you, and am looking forward to learning more about this exciting opportunity.

Kind Regards,

[Your Name/Email signature]

Sometimes the interviewers would list 2-3 available dates and time slots they could arrange for the interview, and you may be asked to select one. Below is a sample of how you could respond to the employer.

Dear Mr. Smith,

Thank you for the interview opportunity with [company name].

I wanted to confirm that I’ll be available to meet with you on Tuesday, 10 May at 10.30 am.

I appreciate the opportunity to talk with you, and looking forward to learn more about this exciting opportunity.

Kind Regards,

[Your Name/Email signature]

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