The Working Interview: What to Expect & How to Make the Most of It

Dec 14, 2016

An interview gives an employer the opportunity to learn more about an applicant’s skills and previous work experience. While this type of traditional one-on-one interview offers an important chance to make a good first impression, it does not give a potential employee hands-on experience in the position to see if it’s a good fit.

This is where a working interview comes in!

What is a Working Interview?

Growing in popularity, a working interview gives the employer a chance to see the applicant’s skills in action. This arrangement can benefit both parties. Candidates get to see if they like the job. Hiring managers get to see how well the candidate will actually perform in the position. You may be wondering, “How long is a working interview?” Working interviews typically last about four hours long and the candidate is paid for their time. At Friday Services, we’ve seen working interviews do wonders to help match applicants with the right jobs.  

Benefits of a Working Interview

Not only does the working interview give the employer an opportunity to assess the work, but it also gives the job seeker an opportunity to “try out” the job that they will be performing and to get a feel for the office culture. After a four-hour shift, the client will give the candidate feedback and discuss whether or not they are a good fit for their team. The candidate will have the opportunity to share their own feelings about accepting/declining the assignment. They may or may not continue working out the day.

Wendy Whitaker

“It gives the employee an opportunity to see the environment and get a peek into the job they will be performing,” says Wendy Whitaker, Friday Services’s staffing generalist.It allows them to have an ‘easy out’ if they feel the position isn’t right for them.”

We’ve seen candidates benefit from this opportunity for positions ranging from clerical to industrial. In one example, an employee was needed who possessed woodworking skills. Rather than having a candidate explain how he would build a wooden workstation, he actually built it. This proved that he had the skills necessary for the job and he was promptly hired.

A Peek into Company Culture

The term company culture refers to a business’ personality and system of values and norms. When a new employee joins the team, it is not only important that they possess the skills needed to do the work, but also that they mesh well with the team. From a business perspective, hiring people who support the company culture is important for boosting productivity and ensuring a harmonious work environment.

Wendy says that the potential employee can asses the culture of the office or facility and decide if it’s the right place for them. For other ways to ensure that a job seeker is the right fit for your company culture, check out our blog post, “How to Hire the Right Person for Your Company Culture.”

Advice to Get the Most From Your Working Interview

In addition to a possible working interview, employers continue to offer traditional interviews. It’s always important to let your personality shine and put your best foot forward. We’ve come up with some tips to make your interview go as smoothly as possible.

Wendy offers some great tips for potential employees who take on a working interview assignment:

  • Report on time, or just a few minutes early. Maybe even drive by the day before and check out where you need to report.
  • Dress to impress.
  • Bring a notebook.
  • Reference back to your notes rather than asking the same questions over and over.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
  • Stay focused. Cell phone should be turned off.
  • Be confident in your abilities and skills. This is your time to shine!

Ready for a New Job?

We want you to know exactly what to expect during your job search with Friday Services. The onboarding process is exactly the same with each Friday Services candidate/employee, although there are some slight variations between applicants for industrial and clerical work.

Apply for a new job today! Fill out the Friday Services online job application. Browse through our online job listings page and find a position that speaks to you! We are committed to helping you find the right fit. Contact us if you have any questions.


If you see a lot of potential in yourself – so do we! Start your job search and learn about the opportunities and benefits offered.


Friday Services is independent and locally owned. We offer Western North Carolina employers strategic flexibility with greater attention to detail.