Finland - typical interview structure

Country: Finland
Official languages: Finnish, Swedish
Phone code: +358
Internet code: .fi/.ax

Is there a typical interview structure?

The employer usually interviews between 3 and 10 candidates. They may make their deci­sion after one interview, or conduct further interviews or aptitude tests.

Greetings are followed by an introduction about the job and the company by the employer. Introduce yourself clearly and look everyone in the eye. Before questions begin, you are normally expected to say something about yourself - why you applied for the job and why you think you should be chosen. At the end of the meeting, you have the opportunity to ask any questions that were not answered.

Interviews are generally relaxed. However, do not be surprised if there are silences, as the interviewers may be taking notes.

During the interview, stay calm and speak clearly. Set out what you have achieved, but try not to be over-confident. It is important that you show interest in the position by being active, listening carefully and asking for clari­fication if you do not understand what the employer means. However, do not interrupt the interviewer. Above all, be honest and do not crit­icise former employers.

If you are asked to take a psychological or apti­tude test, you can take it as a good sign, as it means that you are among the best candi­dates. You cannot really prepare for the tests; the best thing is to get a good night's sleep and to be honest. Do not try to pretend to be some­one you are not.

It is important for the employer to find out about your professional background and capa­bilities. However, they also want to know about your personality; your strengths and weak­nesses; and how your previous employer would describe you. You may also need to describe how you react to stress and deadlines or how you cope with difficult situations.

When is a question out of bounds?

The non-discrimination act prohibits discrimination on the grounds of age, ethnic or national origin, nationality, language, religious affiliation, political allegiance, state of health, disability, sexual orientation or other personal characteristics. The applicant does not need to answer questions dealing with his/her religious or political persuasion, illnesses, pregnancy, family planning or trade union activities. Employers can make precise enquires about health if a good physical condition is vital in order to carry out the required duties of the job.

last modification: 2014-09-04
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