What Does a Third Interview Mean?

Apple Interview Process

Did you just get shortlisted for the third round of interviews for your dream job? Congratulations! A third interview means that you’re another step closer to living your dream. 

Companies often hold multiple rounds of interviews. A third interview isn’t anything bad. It just means that you’re an exceptional candidate that is being seriously considered for the job. Usually, the third interview is the final one during the process.

But interviews can be daunting. And the third one at that? At this point, most candidates feel extremely drained and tired. Other times, a third interview can make one feel hopeless and disconnected from their dreams. If you feel the same way, then believe me you’re not alone. 

This article is your guide on how to ace your third (and hopefully, the last) interview in your recruiting process. 

Steps to Ace your Interview 

Often, candidates are left dazed by the idea of a third interview. They’ve already gone through this process twice, what else can the recruiters possibly want to know? Haven’t they told them everything?

It is these raging questions that create confusion and end up demotivating the candidate. But the truth is that the third interview is just as important as the other two, and nothing bad. It’s a good thing that you were shortlisted for one!

The first interview, usually held via a phone call, also sees disqualification of candidates. Keeping this in mind, isn’t it promising that you’ve made it too far?

Companies usually hold a phone screening round, preceding the second round. Candidates are disqualified at all levels. Sometimes, even before the interview process starts. The fact that you’ve been approached for a third interview is a big deal in itself. 

So, does a third interview mean that I’ve been hired? Sadly, no. Disqualifications are going to take place even after the third interview. Perhaps, your recruiters plan to hold the fourth round? In any case, the interview becomes important.

How is the third interview different from previous interviews?

Unlike your previous interviews, the third interview will most likely focus on your habits and ask behavior-oriented questions. The focus will most likely be on your work ethic, if you will be able to adapt yourself within the company’s atmosphere, etc. 

The third round will also be comparatively longer, consisting of questions that have no straight answers. The recruiters are still concerned with your skills and experience but it is no longer the main focus. Compared to the second interview, which had most likely been more work-related and measured your knowledge, this interview will try to understand you more deeply as a person. 

They might ask you about your work environment preferences if you’re comfortable working in groups and your approach towards risk-taking.

Since the third interview only consists of a smaller set of selected candidates, it means that the company considers you to be a serious candidate. In many cases, senior officials may conduct your interview or you might be faced with a bigger panel. 

How to Prepare for the Interview?

We have established that third interviews are just as important as other interviews, if not more. So how do we prepare for an interview which focuses on your behavior and preferences? Memorizing sample answers is going to be of no help in such a personalized setting. 

But there are a few things that you can do to ensure that your experience goes smoothly. A few tips and advanced preparation can make you feel ready and confident to tackle down yet another round of the hiring process. 

‘Google-search’ your company

No, not in a “dig up all the skeletons in their closets type of way” but to keep yourself up-to-date. Companies frequently issue new statements, launch newer products and services, etc. When going in for an interview make sure that you know the most recent developments that have happened within the corporation. Have a look at their social media accounts, interactions, and partnerships. If you haven’t had the chance to look up the company till now, official websites are a good place to start. Go to their official website and read the ‘about us’ section as well as recent press releases. 

You might even want to look up the person who’ll be interviewing you. Check their LinkedIn profile and their history with the company to give you an idea of what you can converse about. You might have similar interests and experiences that you might want to mention during the interview. A good conversation will help you stand out.

Ask Questions at the end of the interview

As a serious candidate, you are expected to ask serious questions. Ask questions related to your job and position. If you have a different interviewer interviewing you this round, you can even consider repeating questions. Try getting newer perspectives. 

You can even ask more intruding questions, including about the working of the company and other officials. This is also the time when you might want to start negotiating your final salary and other job benefits. 

Some questions that you can ask are:

  1. What challenges does this position pose?
  2. How would you describe the work environment here?
  3. Who held this position before me?
  4. What expectations does the company hold towards the position holder?

You can also use the STAR interview technique. It is designed to help candidates give their answers a structure. STAR is an abbreviation for Situation, Task, Action, and Response. 

Address all of the interviewer’s concerns

It can be that based on your past two interviews, the company might have some concerns regarding your joining. For example, they might not be very clear about your experience in the industry. Take this interview as the chance to clear out such misconceptions. 

Here are some sample answers for you to refer to.

“I was informed that my lack of experience with social media is something which concerned you. I have signed up for an online certificate course. I wish to give my very best to the company.” 

“I know that I seem to have less experience when it comes to communications. However, I have worked as an intern for a telecom company before which helped me sharpen my people’s skills.”

These are just some sample answers. You can look for online courses, campus programs, skill enhancement camps, and many more to add to your skills. Talking about these concerns gives the impression that you do take this position seriously and are willing to go the extra mile.

Salary Negotiation

I mentioned this earlier in the article itself. But salary negotiation deserves its place. 

Often, the third interview is the final one. Chances are that your recruiters won’t call you for another round after you walk out of the hall. So, isn’t this the perfect time to negotiate salary?

Firstly, let the panel mention the salaries first. Bringing the monetary part of the job yourself might not sit well with your recruiters. Follow the basic professional courtesy. The negotiation talk doesn’t have to be about deciding on a figure. It can just be a discussion on how much you expect and how satisfied you’re with your overall package. 

You can also ask about employee benefits.

Lastly, Be Confident 

Confidence is key. Show your interviewers that you’re perfect for the job. And don’t put yourself down. Remember, you’ve made it till the third round. The company is seriously considering you so have some confidence in yourself and your past works. They are all brilliant.

Within the next twenty-four hours of your interview, send a thank-you note to your panel. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy. Just a simple email showcasing your gratitude would do. A thank-you note is a polite token of appreciation that sends a genuine message across the board. You may also take this as an opportunity to add something you forgot to say during your interview.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some most commonly asked questions about the third round of the interview process.

Q1. Is getting approached for a third interview a bad thing?

No. A third interview means that you’re one of the most qualified candidates and the recruiters are seriously considering you for the position. It is just another step closer to getting the job!

Q2. What kind of questions should I expect at my third interview?

Third interviews seem to focus more upon behavioral questions. The recruiters would most likely want to know about your personality, your work preferences. They want to know how well you would adapt to the company environment.

These questions don’t have a definite answer since they are much more personalized. 

Q3. Is it different from a second interview?

Third interviews tend to be longer and more focused upon you as an individual. You can also expect a much larger panel as well as more senior officials as your interviewers. 

Q4. Does a third interview mean that I’m hired?

Unfortunately, no. A third interview means… well, the third interview. Treat it like you would treat your first and your second interview. Give your best. You can still be disqualified at this stage. 

What Does a Third Interview Mean?

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