Interview red flags: Candidates baulk at excessive interviews

Michelle Lownie, Eden Scott CEO

NEW research reveals evolving candidate expectations of the job interview process. A poll of 1035 UK workers commissioned by Aberdeen-based recruitment firm, Eden Scott, found that52% were reluctant to attend more than two interviews to receive a job offer.

27% were willing to attend up to 3 interviews, while only 12% were open to participating in four or more. On average candidates indicated they would lose interest in a job opportunity if required to wait nine days or more for a post-interview response, with workers aged 45+ losing patience after just eight days.

Speaking of the findings, Michelle Lownie, CEO at Eden Scott said: “We’re witnessing a shifting dynamic in the employer-candidate relationship. Despite challenging economic conditions, it’s still a candidate’s market, with skills gaps and remote working opportunities contributing to a competitive employer landscape. As a result, candidates are entering interviews on more equal footing – they expect more from companies, starting with a better interview experience.”

Beyond excessive interview rounds, further ‘red flags’ for candidates included: frequent interruptions (59%), the interviewer arriving late (28%) and hearing the company culture described as a ‘family’ dynamic (24%).

Nearly two-thirds (64%) were turned off by overly-personal questions, while just under a quarter (24%) said they’d be uncomfortable if it was obvious their interviewer hadn’t properly read their CV. A further 68% said a confrontational interviewer style would put them off a job opportunity.

Michelle added: “To be in with a better chance of attracting the right candidates, employers should make the interview experience as positive as possible. Most of the important work, including accurate job descriptions, sourcing suitable candidates and carefully screening them, should be completed well in advance of the interview, with the interview itself an opportunity for a productive discussion between both parties.”

Eden Scott has compiled a summary of the research findings plus additional insights for employers in its new guide, “The Art of the Interview”, available at

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