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Lost  
#1 Posted : Wednesday, May 15, 2019 12:06:49 PM(UTC)
Lost

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This would be to GS5. I’m a 4/2 right now.

So last Tuesday I get a call at around 10:30 I missed the call because I was asleep. So at around 1300 my phone rings again from my VA. I answer it, and the HR lady asked me if I wanted to interview for a job the next day. She said she also emailed me at work but I didn’t reply “because I worked 36 hours in 2 days and needed sleep”.
Anyways, I show up for the interview and the HR lady was in the office I was suppose to go to. She starts showing me around telling me I’ll be using this computer and that would be my desk. So I go in and do the interview I think it went good. They asked if I had any questions which I did. Then they proceeded to tell me all about the job then he points out another interviewer and stated she would be my trainer and asked if I could work with her all day long.
At the end they said I will know by next Friday the 17th.
A few hours later on my way to the canteen I run into the HR lady. She said my interview went just fine. I meet or exceed all the job requirements and I’m schedule A veteran.

So what’s your opinion, does it sound like I have a chance?
Dec 2017 applied
Late Jan. Interview
March 1st. T/O
March 6th. E-qip
March 7. Finger prints

Veterans affairs
gailbuf  
#2 Posted : Wednesday, May 15, 2019 4:13:51 PM(UTC)
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sounds promising. Wishing you all the best.
Lost  
#3 Posted : Monday, May 20, 2019 2:59:54 PM(UTC)
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So update. HR said they did not choose anyone they interviewed. Makes me think they already had someone they wanted.
Dec 2017 applied
Late Jan. Interview
March 1st. T/O
March 6th. E-qip
March 7. Finger prints

Veterans affairs
frankgonzalez  
#4 Posted : Tuesday, May 21, 2019 2:37:17 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Lost Go to Quoted Post
So update. HR said they did not choose anyone they interviewed. Makes me think they already had someone they wanted.
Or, no-one impressed them in the interview. I've been there...interviewed 10 people, and recommended (along with the rest of the panel) to throw back the cert and start over. It happens. We didn't have anyone in mind but everyone interviewed was terrible, second time around we found someone (actually we liked the top 3, so it worked out for us). Had it happen on a different occasion, and the selecting official decided to hire the top person we interviewed even though we said it would be a mistake. Within 6 months of them starting, the selecting official was regretting their decision and I was having to coach and counsel them to get them to do their job properly. Fortunately (for me at least), I got a promotion to my current position and I'm happy here.


You should have voted Cthulu...the greatest of all Evils
Marie93  
#5 Posted : Wednesday, May 22, 2019 3:25:11 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: frankgonzalez Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: Lost Go to Quoted Post
So update. HR said they did not choose anyone they interviewed. Makes me think they already had someone they wanted.
Or, no-one impressed them in the interview. I've been there...interviewed 10 people, and recommended (along with the rest of the panel) to throw back the cert and start over. It happens. We didn't have anyone in mind but everyone interviewed was terrible, second time around we found someone (actually we liked the top 3, so it worked out for us). Had it happen on a different occasion, and the selecting official decided to hire the top person we interviewed even though we said it would be a mistake. Within 6 months of them starting, the selecting official was regretting their decision and I was having to coach and counsel them to get them to do their job properly. Fortunately (for me at least), I got a promotion to my current position and I'm happy here.





This is may come across general question that is asking for kinda specific answers. I have read your some of your other posts regarding interviews. But here goes... What makes an interview so bad the person fails when they were otherwise qualified? What makes a terrible interview and why does the person who did the interview think it went well?

Thanks for any insight.
TheRealOrange  
#6 Posted : Thursday, May 23, 2019 2:23:26 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Marie93 Go to Quoted Post
This is may come across general question that is asking for kinda specific answers. I have read your some of your other posts regarding interviews. But here goes... What makes an interview so bad the person fails when they were otherwise qualified? What makes a terrible interview and why does the person who did the interview think it went well?

Thanks for any insight.

I can't speak for frankgonzalez, but I have conducted dozens of interviews and some people simply don't do well. The agencies I have worked at have used structured interview questions for years, and each question comes with a set of benchmarks to guide the interviewer in rating the responses. The comparison of the responses to the benchmarks is intended to take as much subjectivity out of the interview rating as possible. In the worst case I have ever seen, the candidate being interviewed did not hit a single benchmark during her entire interview. She was rated separately by the three panel members, with no coordination of the ratings in advance, and each one rated her with the lowest score possible. If I didn't know better, I would have sworn that someone found her on the street on the day of the interview, handed her a completed application and said, "Here, go interview for this job." It was truly that bad. To me a terrible interview is one in which the person being interviewed simply misses the point of the question(s) and fails to address the real substance of what is being asked. Believe me, interviewers can generally see when people are simply winging it. Conversely, when someone doesn't have exact experience related to a question but is able to analogize relevant experience in other similar areas, that makes sense and usually goes well. I can generally overlook nervousness, but people who guess, wing it, try to talk a lot to impress, etc., all are red flags.
thanks 1 user thanked TheRealOrange for this useful post.
Marie93 on 5/23/2019(UTC)
frankgonzalez  
#7 Posted : Thursday, May 23, 2019 3:14:13 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Marie93 Go to Quoted Post
This is may come across general question that is asking for kinda specific answers. I have read your some of your other posts regarding interviews. But here goes... What makes an interview so bad the person fails when they were otherwise qualified? What makes a terrible interview and why does the person who did the interview think it went well?

Thanks for any insight.
Let's see....
Had a someone interview who got every technical question wrong (and in my field, these are things you HAVE to know inside and out at the grade we were interviewing for). They had no clue whatsoever. After the interview, as a group we spent the next 10 minutes looking over the resume to see how they made it through...whoever's resume it was, it was not the person we interviewed despite their name being on it.

Another interview: retired GS14 applying for a GS-13 position. Again, got key technical aspects very wrong. Beyond that though, at the end of the interview declared "I'm obviously the most qualified, so when do you want me to start. There is no-one you could be interviewing that is better than me, and I know I will be coming in to teach you how to do your job!" I like confident, but to insult the interview panelists...not a great move even if you were technically the best person interviewed. Now we have to consider will you alienate the rest of the team if we select you. When he was not selected, I had to explain how much he got wrong in the interview, and then he started to argue those things didn't really matter as his people skills made up for it and he could refresh and relearn those things. That was a nightmare we missed by not hiring him.

Had someone who was an attorney apply for a position (I work in EEO), and they had no clue what our role is (we are not advocates for either side), and they failed to do any type of research prior to the interview (such as what are the laws that apply to federal sector in EEO, timelines for complaints, Rehab Act vs ADA, etc). Very basic stuff...tried to bluff their way through the interview., and at the end declared that as an attorney, he could advocate for the complainant or agency as needed by the role. Again...no go.

Had others who were okay with the technical questions, but bombed the others (ie "Tell us of a time you had to work with others and it wasn't successful. What did you learn from that experience?" In EEO, not all cases resolve..and sometimes there is nothing you could have done differently, but sometimes communicating better may have helped address a concern which could have helped. Response: "I have never had anything not be successful. And if the other people on the team aren't trying hard enough, I leave them behind and do it myself!" We are looking for things that show collaboration, reaching out for help, analytic review of the issues after the fact to see what could have been done differently, etc We would have happily accepted a story from childhood about trying to bake a cake but because they didn't follow the recipe the cake was dry and tasted bad, and they learned that you need understand and follow the instructions first before you try to improve things.).

And so on.

I've interviewed people who if they were technically better would have been a great fit personality-wise, and others who were technically great but would be a lousy fit with the team , and so on.

You should have voted Cthulu...the greatest of all Evils
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Marie93 on 5/23/2019(UTC)
habu987  
#8 Posted : Thursday, May 23, 2019 8:25:57 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: frankgonzalez Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: Marie93 Go to Quoted Post
This is may come across general question that is asking for kinda specific answers. I have read your some of your other posts regarding interviews. But here goes... What makes an interview so bad the person fails when they were otherwise qualified? What makes a terrible interview and why does the person who did the interview think it went well?

Thanks for any insight.
Let's see....
Had a someone interview who got every technical question wrong (and in my field, these are things you HAVE to know inside and out at the grade we were interviewing for). They had no clue whatsoever. After the interview, as a group we spent the next 10 minutes looking over the resume to see how they made it through...whoever's resume it was, it was not the person we interviewed despite their name being on it.

Another interview: retired GS14 applying for a GS-13 position. Again, got key technical aspects very wrong. Beyond that though, at the end of the interview declared "I'm obviously the most qualified, so when do you want me to start. There is no-one you could be interviewing that is better than me, and I know I will be coming in to teach you how to do your job!" I like confident, but to insult the interview panelists...not a great move even if you were technically the best person interviewed. Now we have to consider will you alienate the rest of the team if we select you. When he was not selected, I had to explain how much he got wrong in the interview, and then he started to argue those things didn't really matter as his people skills made up for it and he could refresh and relearn those things. That was a nightmare we missed by not hiring him.

Had someone who was an attorney apply for a position (I work in EEO), and they had no clue what our role is (we are not advocates for either side), and they failed to do any type of research prior to the interview (such as what are the laws that apply to federal sector in EEO, timelines for complaints, Rehab Act vs ADA, etc). Very basic stuff...tried to bluff their way through the interview., and at the end declared that as an attorney, he could advocate for the complainant or agency as needed by the role. Again...no go.

Had others who were okay with the technical questions, but bombed the others (ie "Tell us of a time you had to work with others and it wasn't successful. What did you learn from that experience?" In EEO, not all cases resolve..and sometimes there is nothing you could have done differently, but sometimes communicating better may have helped address a concern which could have helped. Response: "I have never had anything not be successful. And if the other people on the team aren't trying hard enough, I leave them behind and do it myself!" We are looking for things that show collaboration, reaching out for help, analytic review of the issues after the fact to see what could have been done differently, etc We would have happily accepted a story from childhood about trying to bake a cake but because they didn't follow the recipe the cake was dry and tasted bad, and they learned that you need understand and follow the instructions first before you try to improve things.).

And so on.

I've interviewed people who if they were technically better would have been a great fit personality-wise, and others who were technically great but would be a lousy fit with the team , and so on.



And on the other side, I interviewed for a position a couple years ago and bombed the interview--the job posting and application questionnaire was for a fairly generic IT project manager position with a little bit of high level enterprise architecture stuff added in. I've got IT PM experience in spades, but little formal enterprise architecture experience or education, and listed as such in the questionnaire.

The 60 minute in person interview, on the other hand, was 100% about enterprise architecture, and pretty in-depth, technical questions about it. Frankly, I should have thanked them and recused myself within the first 10 minutes of the interview when I realized I was way over my head, but I stumbled through the interview and can honestly say I only gave good answers to maybe 2-3 of the 20+ questions and had absolutely no idea for at least 10 of the others.
thanks 1 user thanked habu987 for this useful post.
Marie93 on 5/23/2019(UTC)
Endless Summer  
#9 Posted : Thursday, May 23, 2019 11:39:14 AM(UTC)
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My first Fed interview. I had no idea about the rules or how it was to be done. I was expecting a free-flowing Q&A session. So I answered their questions just with a yes or no or a short answer expecting they would dig deeper. Of course that never happened and I obviously didn't get the offer.

Later, as a participant on a hiring board, we had one candidate who was the perfect fit on paper. We were really concerned because he was also the husband of one of our administrators and we knew we'd catch heat for hiring him, regardless of how qualified he was. He came into the interview and was completely unimpressive, he had the idea that this was a done deal and he felt it was just a formality he had to go through. We all agreed he was the worst and didn't even consider him.

Another candidate, when asked to tell us of a time he had to deal with adversity, recounted a story about how he was accused of being a racist but he didn't let that bother him...

yikes
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Marie93 on 5/23/2019(UTC)
Marie93  
#10 Posted : Thursday, May 23, 2019 8:58:11 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Endless Summer Go to Quoted Post
My first Fed interview. I had no idea about the rules or how it was to be done. I was expecting a free-flowing Q&A session. So I answered their questions just with a yes or no or a short answer expecting they would dig deeper. Of course that never happened and I obviously didn't get the offer.

Later, as a participant on a hiring board, we had one candidate who was the perfect fit on paper. We were really concerned because he was also the husband of one of our administrators and we knew we'd catch heat for hiring him, regardless of how qualified he was. He came into the interview and was completely unimpressive, he had the idea that this was a done deal and he felt it was just a formality he had to go through. We all agreed he was the worst and didn't even consider him.

Another candidate, when asked to tell us of a time he had to deal with adversity, recounted a story about how he was accused of being a racist but he didn't let that bother him...

yikes



Wow!
Marie93  
#11 Posted : Thursday, May 23, 2019 9:02:10 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: TheRealOrange Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: Marie93 Go to Quoted Post
This is may come across general question that is asking for kinda specific answers. I have read your some of your other posts regarding interviews. But here goes... What makes an interview so bad the person fails when they were otherwise qualified? What makes a terrible interview and why does the person who did the interview think it went well?

Thanks for any insight.

I can't speak for frankgonzalez, but I have conducted dozens of interviews and some people simply don't do well. The agencies I have worked at have used structured interview questions for years, and each question comes with a set of benchmarks to guide the interviewer in rating the responses. The comparison of the responses to the benchmarks is intended to take as much subjectivity out of the interview rating as possible. In the worst case I have ever seen, the candidate being interviewed did not hit a single benchmark during her entire interview. She was rated separately by the three panel members, with no coordination of the ratings in advance, and each one rated her with the lowest score possible. If I didn't know better, I would have sworn that someone found her on the street on the day of the interview, handed her a completed application and said, "Here, go interview for this job." It was truly that bad. To me a terrible interview is one in which the person being interviewed simply misses the point of the question(s) and fails to address the real substance of what is being asked. Believe me, interviewers can generally see when people are simply winging it. Conversely, when someone doesn't have exact experience related to a question but is able to analogize relevant experience in other similar areas, that makes sense and usually goes well. I can generally overlook nervousness, but people who guess, wing it, try to talk a lot to impress, etc., all are red flags.




Thanks for the insight! I like the fact that you understand interviews are stressful and people get nervous, but I agree with the winging and arrogance.
Marie93  
#12 Posted : Thursday, May 23, 2019 9:04:19 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: habu987 Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: frankgonzalez Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: Marie93 Go to Quoted Post
This is may come across general question that is asking for kinda specific answers. I have read your some of your other posts regarding interviews. But here goes... What makes an interview so bad the person fails when they were otherwise qualified? What makes a terrible interview and why does the person who did the interview think it went well?

Thanks for any insight.
Let's see....
Had a someone interview who got every technical question wrong (and in my field, these are things you HAVE to know inside and out at the grade we were interviewing for). They had no clue whatsoever. After the interview, as a group we spent the next 10 minutes looking over the resume to see how they made it through...whoever's resume it was, it was not the person we interviewed despite their name being on it.

Another interview: retired GS14 applying for a GS-13 position. Again, got key technical aspects very wrong. Beyond that though, at the end of the interview declared "I'm obviously the most qualified, so when do you want me to start. There is no-one you could be interviewing that is better than me, and I know I will be coming in to teach you how to do your job!" I like confident, but to insult the interview panelists...not a great move even if you were technically the best person interviewed. Now we have to consider will you alienate the rest of the team if we select you. When he was not selected, I had to explain how much he got wrong in the interview, and then he started to argue those things didn't really matter as his people skills made up for it and he could refresh and relearn those things. That was a nightmare we missed by not hiring him.

Had someone who was an attorney apply for a position (I work in EEO), and they had no clue what our role is (we are not advocates for either side), and they failed to do any type of research prior to the interview (such as what are the laws that apply to federal sector in EEO, timelines for complaints, Rehab Act vs ADA, etc). Very basic stuff...tried to bluff their way through the interview., and at the end declared that as an attorney, he could advocate for the complainant or agency as needed by the role. Again...no go.

Had others who were okay with the technical questions, but bombed the others (ie "Tell us of a time you had to work with others and it wasn't successful. What did you learn from that experience?" In EEO, not all cases resolve..and sometimes there is nothing you could have done differently, but sometimes communicating better may have helped address a concern which could have helped. Response: "I have never had anything not be successful. And if the other people on the team aren't trying hard enough, I leave them behind and do it myself!" We are looking for things that show collaboration, reaching out for help, analytic review of the issues after the fact to see what could have been done differently, etc We would have happily accepted a story from childhood about trying to bake a cake but because they didn't follow the recipe the cake was dry and tasted bad, and they learned that you need understand and follow the instructions first before you try to improve things.).

And so on.

I've interviewed people who if they were technically better would have been a great fit personality-wise, and others who were technically great but would be a lousy fit with the team , and so on.



And on the other side, I interviewed for a position a couple years ago and bombed the interview--the job posting and application questionnaire was for a fairly generic IT project manager position with a little bit of high level enterprise architecture stuff added in. I've got IT PM experience in spades, but little formal enterprise architecture experience or education, and listed as such in the questionnaire.

The 60 minute in person interview, on the other hand, was 100% about enterprise architecture, and pretty in-depth, technical questions about it. Frankly, I should have thanked them and recused myself within the first 10 minutes of the interview when I realized I was way over my head, but I stumbled through the interview and can honestly say I only gave good answers to maybe 2-3 of the 20+ questions and had absolutely no idea for at least 10 of the others.



At least you are self aware and understood you did horrible!


Marie93  
#13 Posted : Thursday, May 23, 2019 9:14:14 PM(UTC)
Marie93

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Originally Posted by: frankgonzalez Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: Marie93 Go to Quoted Post
This is may come across general question that is asking for kinda specific answers. I have read your some of your other posts regarding interviews. But here goes... What makes an interview so bad the person fails when they were otherwise qualified? What makes a terrible interview and why does the person who did the interview think it went well?

Thanks for any insight.
Let's see....
Had a someone interview who got every technical question wrong (and in my field, these are things you HAVE to know inside and out at the grade we were interviewing for). They had no clue whatsoever. After the interview, as a group we spent the next 10 minutes looking over the resume to see how they made it through...whoever's resume it was, it was not the person we interviewed despite their name being on it.

Another interview: retired GS14 applying for a GS-13 position. Again, got key technical aspects very wrong. Beyond that though, at the end of the interview declared "I'm obviously the most qualified, so when do you want me to start. There is no-one you could be interviewing that is better than me, and I know I will be coming in to teach you how to do your job!" I like confident, but to insult the interview panelists...not a great move even if you were technically the best person interviewed. Now we have to consider will you alienate the rest of the team if we select you. When he was not selected, I had to explain how much he got wrong in the interview, and then he started to argue those things didn't really matter as his people skills made up for it and he could refresh and relearn those things. That was a nightmare we missed by not hiring him.

Had someone who was an attorney apply for a position (I work in EEO), and they had no clue what our role is (we are not advocates for either side), and they failed to do any type of research prior to the interview (such as what are the laws that apply to federal sector in EEO, timelines for complaints, Rehab Act vs ADA, etc). Very basic stuff...tried to bluff their way through the interview., and at the end declared that as an attorney, he could advocate for the complainant or agency as needed by the role. Again...no go.

Had others who were okay with the technical questions, but bombed the others (ie "Tell us of a time you had to work with others and it wasn't successful. What did you learn from that experience?" In EEO, not all cases resolve..and sometimes there is nothing you could have done differently, but sometimes communicating better may have helped address a concern which could have helped. Response: "I have never had anything not be successful. And if the other people on the team aren't trying hard enough, I leave them behind and do it myself!" We are looking for things that show collaboration, reaching out for help, analytic review of the issues after the fact to see what could have been done differently, etc We would have happily accepted a story from childhood about trying to bake a cake but because they didn't follow the recipe the cake was dry and tasted bad, and they learned that you need understand and follow the instructions first before you try to improve things.).

And so on.

I've interviewed people who if they were technically better would have been a great fit personality-wise, and others who were technically great but would be a lousy fit with the team , and so on.



This is so interesting to me! Thanks! It just is amazing that the one person really thought they did well and wanted to argue the point.

Marie93  
#14 Posted : Thursday, May 23, 2019 9:17:44 PM(UTC)
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Thanks everyone for the responses. It seems as if a lot of bullets were dodged.
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