10 interview red flags you should never ignore

Does your gut instinct tell you something might be wrong after a job interview? Here are the 10 interview red flags you should never ignore.

According to Google trend data, the search term interview red flags has received 309.87% increase in the past month alone. Such an uplift reflects the UKs desire to ensure that they are entering a secure and positive environment when they accept a new job role.

In this article, Tayo Ademolu at Translayte.com reveals the 10 job interview red flags to look out for throughout the interview process. 

1) Being made to wait without explanation

It’s not uncommon that in fast paced working environments, tasks run behind schedule. However, interviewers can leave candidates in Zoom or physical waiting rooms as an act of power play. If your interviewer leaves you waiting without a form of explanation, this may indicate that they tend to exert power and that the workplace exudes office politics. 

2) Second guessing yourself afterwards 

If you leave an interview second guessing yourself, it’s important to assess the reason behind this. Some interviewers may give you some worthwhile advice however, if others downplay your experience, exhibit faux surprise at your salary expectations or underplay CV, this may be a sign that they attempting to dampen your confidence in a bid to gain an exceptional skillset for a lower-than-average salary.  Accepting such a role may severely damage your confidence in the long run.

3) An overly long and complex interview process

In the current climate, it’s vital that a workplace is confident with regards to their new hires. It’s common to experience two interview stages however, if each interview lasts several hours, includes multiple tasks to the point where it feels that you are providing free advice, training, or consultancy, it may be time to rethink your plans to continue the interview process.

Ultimately, a workplace is familiar with your CV, may obtain references and have interviewed you. If the interview is overly extensive you may wish to think if it’s a workplace culture that you wish to be a part of.

4) A vague salary

If you have entered the interview stages, the workplace should be transparent with regards to the salary. If they are increasingly vague, this could signal a red flag as it may be lower than industry standard.

5) Asking personal questions

It’s important that everyone in the workplace can communicate in a respectful manner. Much of this is down to personality, and its important they any new candidate ‘fits in’. Whether a candidate is the correct fit is discovered in the interview stages however, it’s not acceptable for an interviewer to ask personal questions.

Asking if you have children (or plan to), if are married, how old you are, or your family background is unacceptable and a definite red flag. As are these awkward interview questions that are usually put to women, and not men.

6) A work hard, play hard culture

Does the interviewer frequently talk of after work drinks, drunken Thursdays, or boozy Friday lunches? After work drinks are great however, if the workplace exudes a ‘work hard, play hard’ culture, there may be an unsaid rule where workplace drinks are manditary and promote an unhealthy culture both physically and mentally. 

7) Ping Pong, PlayStations and slides

Instagramable offices are somewhat the norm, even throughout the work from home movement. It’s important to uncover the objectives of the workplace perks offered. If they offer catering from morning to the evening, is this because you are expected to consistently work overtime?

Is the likes of a games room and free snacks provided to create a nice environment or is it in place of pay rises or annual leave? Don’t be taken in by fancy office spaces and instead focus on the people that work within them.

8) Lack of attention

Whether you are interviewed by one person or many, each should give you their full attention. If any of the interviewers present are looking at their phones for prolonged periods or take part in separate conversations, you may wonder if they respect their colleagues in the workplace.

9) Being left waiting for an answer

Waiting to hear if you have been successful is often the part that interview candidate’s dread. It’s a great idea to ask in an interview when you expect to hear from them on whether you have been successful. If they leave you waiting several weeks, this is a red flag as it may indicate an unnecessary exertion of power, disorganisation, or lack of respect.

10) Pushing you to start straight away

So, you have been offered the role – great! However, is your potential new place of work pushing you to hand in your notice and start? Any new workplace should understand that you may take a reasonable amount of time to accept the role. Any pushiness from your potential new workplace may serve as a red flag.