What Is the Purpose of an Interview?

A job interview or a personal interaction is a pseudo-formal conversation between the employer and the potential candidate. An interview’s objective is not only to capitalize on a job offer but also to identify the employer’s motive for hiring a candidate under the said position. 

There are always two sides in an interview, the candidate and the employer. The candidate depicts what they have to offer in terms of their skills, abilities, and knowledge. 

An interviewer will analyze the candidate’s subject expertise and personality, and emotional intelligence before deciding his/her fitness for the job. On the other side, the candidate must identify the company culture, remuneration, and benefits in an interview. 

What Is the Purpose of an Interview?
Image Source: Leading With Trust

Four Aspects To Explain The Purpose Of An Interview 

Understand Job-Related Duties And Responsibilities

Before going to an interview, it is normal to read the job description to get an overview of what is expected from the person who will fill in the shoes. During an interview, the interviewer will ask questions about the job description. 

The person might ask about the candidate’s ability to show leadership and skill level in the aspects. Questions related to scenarios based on the skills are also an integral part of the personal interaction.

If the vacancy is for a leadership or management role, questions revolving around conflict resolution may pop up during the interview. For a candidate, it is important to ask questions during the interview regarding the role and expectations. 

Fitness For The Job

There are two routes you can take while understanding the purpose of the interview. From a candidate’s perspective, try to figure out the workplace environment. 

While walking in for the interview, take a look at the workplace. It may be a little far-sighted, but observe the employees already working in the company. Check whether they are happy or content?

Employees who feel that they are forced to fit in with the existing workplace environment may not feel satisfied with their job. On the other hand, the employers will also want to hire a person they think can become a part of the team. 

Opportunity To Grow

Every company wants to grow, and the employees working for the organization also want to level up their game because both the company and the employees are dependent on each other to augment each other’s potential. 

Hence, this is another reason for both parties to take part in personal interaction. Some companies offer career ladder programs for employees for re-skilling and training. 

As a candidate, ask questions about career advancement and the possibility of growth in the company. Contrary to the norm, employers ask, “where do you see yourself in five years?”

Ask them, “where do you see a person working in this role in the next five years?” In the end, it is important to know whether this is a long-term opportunity and is there a scope for personal and professional development? 


A candidate should always research and know the salary package for the job role that is in question. Knowing the industry-standards helps a candidate negotiate and ask for a requisite and not just do away with the base package. 

Plus, there is nothing wrong with asking for the salary upfront. Employers like to talk about the salary expectations later in the interview. For an employer, too, it is important to understand the adequate remuneration for the potential candidate. 

So, What Is An Interview All About?

In simple words, an interview is figuring out whether the candidate can do the job or not? It is also about knowing the willingness and the ability to fit in with the company culture. 

A candidate coming from a strong educational background will surely have the required book knowledge to work on the job. But as an interviewer, it is equally essential to understand whether the candidate has the practical knowledge to work on the role.

As for the candidate, an interview helps get answers to questions like, “Is this company right for me?” or “Can I work in this company for a long time?”.

What Is the Purpose of an Interview?


To sum it up, conducting an interview is about separating the wheat from the chaff. It is about analyzing the qualities of every candidate without a bias. 

So, it is a mix of disqualifying processes and shortlisting people who are better positioned to work with the company and justify the role.