After an interview with HR and Line Management, you get called back for a final round and wonder if it is premature to start getting excited about an offer. Making it to this stage is often a very positive sign of progress and here are some points on what to expect and how you can ensure you close the deal.
- You are almost there. The final round interview is often with the CEO, division head or a very senior manager. Getting this far means you have done well and are legitimately close to receiving an offer. Note that a final interview is not a guarantee of an offer, you still need to work hard to impress as it may come down to you and another equally strong candidate.
- Focus is on culture fit. Last round interviews are often less about skills and technical competence, this would have been screened in prior interviews. The focus is often on evaluating your fit to the company’s workplace culture. Expect to get many behavioural questions.
- Review notes from your previous interviews. Remain consistent across all interview stages as the interviewer may bring up discussions from your prior conversations. Do not back track or deviate from what you portrayed in initial interviews, this may raise a red flag.
- Tactfully ask for the job. Close off by reinforcing your interest in the job e.g. “This conversation has solidified my interest in this role and I would love to be the person you bring on board”
- Do not drop new bombshells. Avoid introducing significant information in a final interview that you should have mentioned earlier e.g. I am not on track to complete my degree this year as per my CV, that has been put on hold indefinitely. Neither should you significantly change salary expectations you had previously communicated.
- Be prepared to talk salary. If the interviewer brings it up first, be prepared to discuss remuneration and have some figures ready. Have your minimum desired salary in mind supported by industry specific research and benchmarks as well as your qualifications and experience.
Final round interviews with senior company officials are a step towards receiving that offer as hiring managers would not want to waste the CEO or senior managers time with candidates they are still unsure of. In this regard, getting to this stage is all about the final push to secure your position as the top candidate taking into consideration the six tips above.