Behavior-Based Interviewing

What is it?

A form of interviewing that assesses past behavior as an indicator of future performance.

  • Interview to assess a candidates' skills and competencies and compare them to the needs and preferences of the employer
  • Require candidates to talk about specific experiences from their past
  • Evaluate how past successes and challenges relate to the competencies necessary to perform well in the current job.

How is it developed?

  • Employer defines the skills, characteristics and competencies for the position = position profile.
  • Questions are then developed to probe for these characteristics by asking about past experience “Tell me about a time when…” or “Describe a situation where…”

What types of questions can I expect?

  • Open-ended questions
  • Related to employer identified job profile
  • Questions that assess your behavior and reaction to both successes and challenges

How should I respond?

  • Put your interview responses in the Problem, Solution, Results (PSR) format whenever possible. Clearly describe your role or behavior in the situation and explain the outcome of the situation.
  • Use the sandwich technique if you are asked about a challenge, mistake, or negaitve. Follow up any negatives you were forced to reveal in your response with what you learned from the situation and how that has helped you overcome such obstacles and challenges since then.

Download this handout to create your job profile and review sample interview questions based on your job profile.