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  1. Career Advice
  2. Interviewing
  3. Discover how to answer final interview questions and excel in this last step
Discover how to answer final interview questions and excel in this last step
Profile Jennifer Inglis

Jennifer Inglis

Discover how to answer final interview questions and excel in this last step

Artwork by: Antonina Kasyanikova

  • What is a final interview?
  • Does a final interview mean I got the job?
  • How long does a final interview last?
  • What are the chances of passing the final interview?
  • What not to do after a final interview
  • Preparing for the final interview
  • 10 final interview questions
  • Key takeaways

Getting to the final round of interviews is exciting, so it’s important not to stumble in the final lap. Learn how to prepare for a final interview and discover 10 possible questions you might be asked to get the job you want!

Interviewing is a multi-step process. Many companies conduct multiple rounds of interviews with several people. If you've made it that far, your final interview is your last opportunity to stand out from the competition. So, providing thoughtful, professional responses to interview questions can only help your chances of getting an offer.

In this article, we’ll discuss what you can expect in a final interview, including:

  • What a final interview is

  • How to prepare for a final interview

  • Ways to make a good impression in a final interview

  • 10 examples of final interview questions and the best ways to respond

What is a final interview?

In general, a final interview is the last interview you'll have before finding out if you got the job. If you're at the final interview stage, you've probably had several previous interviews with more than one person and had the chance to thoroughly discuss your background, skills, and experience. The final interview is usually conducted where you'll be working and is designed to give you a clearer picture of the position. At this point, depending on your job level, you may also meet with senior management or C-level executives.

Expert Tip

Google examined its interview data and decided that four interviews allowed them to make a hire with 86% confidence, noting that there was “diminishing return” after that.

Does a final interview mean I got the job?

A final interview doesn’t automatically mean you’ll be offered the job. At this point, you’re most likely among the final candidates, which may include two to five people, and the hiring manager is narrowing down options.

How long does a final interview last?

A final interview can run from 30 to 90 minutes, depending on how many people are interviewing the candidate. But remember, these timeframes are not set in stone and can vary based on the position and the company’s requirements.

What are the chances of passing the final interview?

A small number of candidates are usually selected for final interviews, and most of them will have similar qualifications. But if you’re one of only a few candidates, your chances for getting the job are good, but not guaranteed. This is why it’s so important to be prepared and ready to impress. It could tip the scales in your favor.

What not to do after a final interview

Sometimes what you don’t do during or after a final interview is as important as what you do. Keep in mind the following “don’ts” when it comes to a final interview:

  • Don't ask to answer a question again if you didn't like your answer unless you can add value to your previous response that is directly related to the company’s needs.

  • Don’t stress out. The last thing you need to do is dwell on every interview minutiae. 

  • Don’t assume you’ll get the job and stop looking for others. Keep your eyes and ears to the ground and stay open to other opportunities.

  • Don’t forget to send a thank you note immediately after the interview. Make sure to let the company know you’re excited about the opportunity and you’re confident you’re the right person for the job.

Preparing for the final interview

If you’ve made it to the final round of interviews, that’s great! But don’t sit on your laurels just yet. You want to be confident, but not arrogant. Before the interview, do a mental review of previous interviews and refamiliarize yourself with the job description. If you’re interviewing with a person you’ve met before, it will give you a chance to elaborate on previous answers, and if it’s with a new person, you can get that person up to speed on what was discussed in the other interviews.

At a final interview, it’s important to show that you’ve given the position a lot of thought, including the day-to-day duties and challenges. Think about what questions you might have on your first day, week, or month, and consider asking your interviewers.

Lastly, get a good night’s sleep. If you’re meeting with more than one person, the interview might go on longer than previous ones. It’s important to maintain your energy.

Other ways to make a good impression at a final interview include:

  • Doing additional company research

  • Making several copies of your resume and references

  • Reviewing your body language

  • Choosing an appropriate interview outfit

  • Preparing a list of questions

10 final interview questions

In your previous interviews, the questions likely focused on your experience, skills, and education. Final interviews are a little different; they tend to focus more on career goals and intentions. They also help interviewers determine how you'll "vibe" with the company's values and overall culture. You can anticipate some behavioral interview questions as well so that they can determine how your past experience will benefit the company in the future.

1. "Tell me about yourself"

At this point, you’re probably a little tired of talking about yourself, but remember that the interviewers might be meeting you for the first time. This is a perfect opportunity to shine by demonstrating both your background and your communication skills. Your answer should be no more than one minute long and should keep your recent career history as the focal point, and include your job moves, important accomplishments, and what you hope to accomplish in this potential position.

2. “Are you open to remote work?”

While the parameters of the position were most likely in the original job description, remote work is often an option. If you’ve had at-home working experience, even if it’s only been a few days a week or month, describe your experience with collaboration, meetings, and online tools. It’s important to align your answer with the employer’s expectations, so if it’s fully remote, hybrid, or in-office, let them know your level of comfort and experience with each scenario.

3. “How do you handle stress?”

Everyone handles pressure differently, and the employer needs to know how you respond to stress. This is a perfect time to discuss your past experience with a difficult situation and specifically outline how you successfully handled it. Don’t say you never get stressed — it sounds disingenuous because everyone feels stressed from time to time. If you want to turn a negative into a positive, discuss how you sometimes find stress motivating and give a situation where that stress helped you be more creative and productive.

4. “What can you bring to the company?”

This question is designed to elicit your perceived value and what you’d contribute in the position. What is it that makes you a better candidate than the others? If you have a unique or diverse background, you can underscore how you’ve risen to challenges and achieved your goals. The interviewer probably also wants to see if you’ve done your research and whether you understand the needs and requirements of the position. So align your answer with the job first, incorporating any hard skills you possess that would be beneficial to the role, and then finish up with soft skills, such as leadership, communication, or teamwork.

5. “Is there anything else about yourself that you’d like to share?”

At this point in the interview process, the interviewers are probably going to give you a chance to share anything else about yourself that you haven’t yet mentioned. Don’t be afraid to talk about something you’ve already discussed if you have more to add, or if you think they’ve misunderstood your experience or resume. But this isn’t absolutely necessary. If you feel you’ve put your best self out there, you can tell them, “I think we’ve covered everything! I appreciate you asking though.”

6. “How do you imagine a typical day of work in this position?”

This is another opportunity to demonstrate you’ve done your homework and employed your active listening skills. You should have been able to glean plenty of information from the company website, the job description, and what the interviewers have told you about the position to put together a realistic picture of the job. When answering, express your enthusiasm about the job and that you’re eager to start. Don’t forget the small things, like emails, meetings, traveling, or other less-popular tasks. That will show the interviewer that you are ready and able to take on all facets of the job, not just the high-profile tasks.

7. “What do you think about…" (job-related technology innovations, industry news, and trends)

Companies want to hire people who care about their business. You might consider doing some reading before your final interview, focusing on news and trends that concern the industry. Take some time to learn about what the company does and how it relates to the business world at large. Even check out their social media profile to see what’s new and exciting. Don’t worry too much about your answer; your positive attitude and interest in what the company does will count for a lot.

8. “If we hire you, what goals will you set for yourself?”

This answer will largely depend on the position. “Increasing sales” is a good goal if that’s part of the job, “boosting profits” if you’re a numbers person, or “facilitating productivity” if you’re in a support position. The important thing is to demonstrate that you are interested in the company’s goals, as well as your own.

9. “What motivates you?”

This can be a more challenging question to answer because you don't want to say, "a paycheck." Of course, money is important, but an employer wants to know what's important to you other than money. If you have other things that you enjoy about the job, you’re less likely to suffer from burnout, while being better able to manage stress and handle conflict. And remember, there's no "perfect" answer. Maybe you enjoy the work or want to make an impact in your industry. There are myriad answers to this question, but it’s important to show your potential employer that you’ve given it some thought.

10. “Where do you see yourself in five (or ten) years?”

Employers ask this question because they want to make sure that this position fits in with your long-term goals. No one wants to hire someone who is going to leave in a few months. If they're going to invest in you, they want to ensure that investment will pay off in a long-term, productive employee. You'll want to craft an answer that is a little ambitious but within a realistic framework. Don't say, "In the same place," or "I'd like to have your job." Find something that works with your long-term career goals so the interviewers get the sense you’re in it for the long haul.

Expert Tip

“How do I slay in a final interview?”

It might be helpful to modify this famous quote and think, “Ask not what the company can do for you…ask what you can do for the company.” You have a captive audience, so let them know in clear and professional terms why you are the best person to help meet and exceed their goals. But like any performance, you need to do your homework.

Some things to keep in mind:

  • Be ready to talk about yourself. Interviewers can’t read your mind. Tell them why you’re the top candidate.

  • Think of yourself as excited, not nervous. An interviewer understands some level of nervousness is normal, but if you channel that energy into excitement, you'll come off as more energetic, passionate, and excited about the opportunity.

  • Build a personal brand. Know that potential employers will research you as you've researched them. Make sure your online presence supports the attributes you want to convey and eliminate anything that doesn’t help your career goals.

  • Make sure interviewers can see you in the role. Match your appearance to the position you’re interviewing for (while still being yourself). This shows employers you understand their “brand” and their place in the industry.

  • Have questions ready. If you can’t think of anything to ask, it means you haven’t done your research, you weren’t paying attention, or the job isn’t that important to you.

An important thing to remember in any interview situation, including a final interview, is that you can’t rush the process. You probably won’t hear from employers immediately, so don’t fall to pieces. Remember, a final interview doesn’t guarantee a job offer. Take the opportunity to impress employers one more time before they make a decision. Even if you don’t get the job, use a final interview as an opportunity to grow professionally and continue to polish your interviewing skills. Check out our Interview Prep services here for more help.

Key takeaways

  1. A final interview is your last opportunity to stand out from the competition, and providing thoughtful, professional responses to interview questions can only help your chances of getting an offer.

  2. A final interview doesn’t guarantee you’ll be hired. You are most likely among the final two to five candidates, and the hiring manager is narrowing down options.

  3. Final interview questions are often behavioral questions, so be prepared to discuss how your job experience has produced positive results for previous employers. 

Profile Jennifer Inglis

Jennifer Inglis

Jennifer Inglis is a freelance writer and content creator. A former public school teacher, she has expertise with English literature, writing, and public speaking, as well as an extensive professional background in advertising and media analysis. Jennifer has a bachelor’s degree in Theater and a master’s degree in Education, and is the author of two published novels.

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