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by Cathryn Vandewater | February 03, 2011


So you wake up to a blizzard—on interview day.

What do you do?

Well, if you're like 54% of those who took Vault's snow-day poll, you'll go—early, with extra shoes and socks, and without complaints:Not a bad idea, says Theresa Forget, a senior healthcare recruiter. "We are never closed for business, so interviews take place consistently in inclement weather," she says. She also tells us that if you don't hear from the recruiter, you can assume the interview is on—so if you dash in late, dripping, and frazzled, you'll look extra flaky to your recruiter, who's been calm and working all afternoon. Whoops.

Can You Cancel?

Cancelling last minute is a no-no if the bad weather has been predicted for days. If a blizzard is going to present a problem for you, recruiters expect you to have the good sense (and manners) to plan ahead.

"Many candidates contact us the day prior to the interview if inclement weather is in the forecast," Forget says, noting that the foresight is rewarded: "we are very flexible to rescheduling at that time."

So if Snow-pocalypse is on the way, take a hard look at your means of getting to the interview, and its ability to function in snow, sleet, and "wintry mix." Not looking good?

"Communication is Key"

If you're anticipating major commute issues, bite the bullet and reschedule. According to Forget, it won't hurt you. "If the candidate is not able to attend due to the weather, this will not affect his/her candidacy," she assures us. What will affect your spot in the running? Lack of communication. Forget tells us that it's "key to remaining a viable candidate." So even if plans do go awry, call as soon as you suspect a delay.

Take the Wingtips… Leave the Galoshes

Of course, attire is another matter altogether—one that requires just as much planning, and just as little mention at the interview, as proper dress goes without saying. "It is expected that candidates will be wearing boots, and will bring a change of shoes," Forget says. "There is usually a lobby or restroom that the candidate can use to change prior to presenting themselves in the Human Resources office."

Bad weather aside, "presenting yourself" is exactly what you'll be doing at the interview, and first impressions stick. Thus, you'll want to do as much preparation as possible to make sure you're giving off a punctual, professional, and composed impression when you arrive for your interview.

Failing that, just do your best. "Recruiters are people too," Forget says. "We are dealing with the same inclement weather and transportation delays, so we are as accommodating and understanding as possible."


Filed Under: Interviewing
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