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Personality survey and case interview: Get ready for the 2nd job interview

If you're called in for a follow-up job interview, you might be tasked with preparing a case, undergoing a skills test, and completing a personality survey. The aim is for the employer to gain a more comprehensive understanding of you as a candidate.

Congratulations! If you have been invited to a second interview, you are one of the 2-3 candidates who made the best impression at the first job interview.

This time, the employer wants to get a better impression of who you are as a person and whether you have the right skills. They can do this through a personality survey, a skills test and/or a case/assignment.

It may seem nerve-wracking, but tests and cases are only part of the overall picture that the employer is trying to form of you. Fortunately, you have the chance to prepare for the second interview, tests, and cases/assignments in advance. Here, you can find guidance on how to do so.

The standard questions for the second job interview

In the second interview, you often have to talk to the manager you will be working with and one or two employees. Here you have the opportunity to get to know each other better, and you can ask in greater detail about the job and the position.

Moreover, the second interview is the right time to discuss salary and employment terms more explicitly.

It's advisable to reflect further on the position between the first and second interviews, considering the additional information you've gained. This not only demonstrates commitment but also positions you well for potential inquiries from the employer.

Some of the most typical questions that you can expect – and therefore prepare for – are:

  • Can you again briefly tell us about yourself? (If there are new participants in the conversation)
  • Did the first interview give rise to any questions from you?
  • Can you tell us about a situation where you were not happy working with a colleague - and why?
  • Can you tell us about a really good idea you've had - for example a new way of solving a task?
  • What tasks do you enjoy?
  • What tasks do you dislike working on?
  • How do you handle many tasks at once?
  • Can you give an example of a situation where you were under pressure and how you handled it?
  • Can you talk about a situation where a manager asked you to do something that you disagreed with? How did you handle it?

However, the significance of the second interview extends beyond the employer's assessment—it serves as a crucial opportunity for you to refine your perception of the employer and determine if the position aligns with your interests.

If there were some things that were still unclear after the first conversation, it is therefore a good idea that you prepare a series of questions yourself. It can be, for example:

  • What results do you expect from me?
  • How are tasks delegated and prioritised?
  • What is the biggest challenge in the job?
  • Why is the position vacant?
  • How can I develop professionally in the position?
  • What are the employment conditions like: Salary, working hours, holiday, continuing education?
  • How would you describe the collegial environment and collaborative culture at your place?

The personality survey shows your preferences in your working life

One in three private companies use tests in the recruitment process, and in large companies the figure is even higher. In other words, you might as well be prepared to take a personality survey when you're looking for work.

The personality survey is usually a multiple choice test where you have to choose between several answer options. It must be used to uncover your preferences in relation to work. It could be, for example, whether you are detail-oriented or focus on the overall perspective, or whether you prefer to develop ideas alone or together with others.

A personality survey is therefore specifically about who you are at work and not in private contexts.

There is no conclusion in a personality survey, nor does it stand alone, but it is a supplement to the conversation. So you will not be selected based on a personality survey alone, but the employer can use it to focus the interview on certain qualities that are important in the position.

You can prepare by Googling personality surveys and getting an idea of ​​how they are structured.

However, the best advice is to answer the questions honestly and see it as an introduction to a dialogue about how you fit into the position.

The skills test measures your abilities in various tasks

In addition to personality tests, it has become standard for many employers to use skills tests in connection with job interviews.

Skills tests should usually reveal your abilities in the following categories:

  • Communication skills: Can you understand and write different statements correctly?
  • Mathematical understanding: This may involve probability, equations, fractions, diagrams and more.
  • Troubleshooting Tasks: How good are you at finding bugs?
  • Abstract and logical abilities: How good are you at discovering logical connections and seeing abstract patterns?

Skill tests are often timed, and unlike the personality survey, there is a correct answer. When you take the test, you will be measured on how you perform compared to an average norm group.

When you receive the skills test, you can Google it and get an idea of ​​which questions you can answer.

However, you don't have to spend too much time preparing, as employers place only limited importance on the skills test.

When you take the test, you must sit in an undisturbed place where you can concentrate on the tasks.

Few people are equally strong in all categories, and therefore it is a good idea to reflect on where you are challenged, so that you can articulate it if it comes up during the job interview. If, for example, you are weakest in communication skills, you can say that you want to ask a colleague who is a better communicator for advice before you send an email to an important customer.

Task or case for the job interview

In addition to the interview and test, several companies use cases when they have to select the right candidate for the job. It varies whether it is a task that you have to solve in advance and present to the interview, or whether you have to solve the task in a short time in connection with the interview itself.

The advantage of a case is that it is designed to remind you of the tasks you have to solve in the position, and that it therefore gives a better impression of how qualified you are.

You must be aware that the employer will be particularly interested in how you intend to solve the task, your presentation of it and your considerations along the way. You must therefore place at least as much importance on all your considerations and trouble-solving approach as on the result itself.