Job Interview Tips for Unskilled Labor

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    Basic Tips

    • No matter what position you're applying for it's important to make a good first impression. Always arrive for the interview a few minutes early, well-groomed and wearing clean, professional attire. Avoid chewing gum, and if you smoke, wait until after the interview to light up. Answer each question clearly and honestly, without using slang terms. Bring your driver's license and Social Security card, and be prepared to provide references. If you need a permit to work due to your age or citizenship, bring the proof that you're authorized to work with you to the interview.

    Consider Employer Needs

    • Many large companies that hire unskilled labor screen applicants with a computer-based test or questionnaire before interviewing them in person. Depending on the company, you may complete the screening assessment online if you apply from home or at a computer kiosk in the store. Questions generally run the gamut from indicating the days and times you want to work to more complex multiple choice questions about your personality and how you behave in particular situations. For example, you may be asked to define stealing, based on a few scenarios, or rate how you handle stress or conflict on a sliding scale. When you answer questions, consider what the employer is looking for, and answer accordingly.

    Expect Behavioral Questions

    • Because unskilled labor jobs do not require a high level of education or experience, you most likely will not face questions about your specific skills during the interview. What you can expect are questions designed to gauge your response to particular situations. For example, for a cashier or customer service position in a retail store, you may be asked to describe a time when you dealt with someone who was unhappy, or when you had to work hard to meet someone's expectations. Prepare to answer behavior-based questions about topics such as what you would do if you suspected a co-worker of stealing.

    Learn About the Company

    • During any job interview, whether in person or computer based, expect to answer questions to test your knowledge of the company, and explain why you want to work there. Before the interview, think about your reasons for wanting to work there that go beyond collecting a paycheck or the employee discount. Think in terms of training for future positions, your interest in the company's business or primary product, or the company's reputation. Review the job description and focus on the tasks that interest you the most, for example, interacting with customers or learning more about a trade. Show the interviewer that you are familiar with the company and enthusiastic about the job to improve your chances of getting hired.

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