Getting time off work for interviews

Written by: Charlotte Rogers
Published on: 29 Jul 2019

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Sometimes getting time off work for interviews can be daunting and may even have you second guessing your jobs-search. However, there are a lot of things you can do to aid your job search and help get the process moving. Your options may include tailoring your job applications, using social media effectively and taking advantage of any recruitment events that may be coming up. When you do get an invitation to an interview, it is likely that you will be offered one during working hours – which are highly likely to be very similar to your own. There can be time restrictions and some people may find it difficult to get time off work to be able to attend interviews. However, your current job should not get in the way of your career progression. Here are some recommendations for how to go about attending interviews whilst working full-time.

Don’t lie when you don’t have too

Most people don’t like to lie and lying to your boss about your whereabouts may have some repercussions you didn’t consider. If you decide to tell your boss a white lie, there may be some things that can catch you out. You may see a colleague on the way to your interview, you may accidently slip up and reveal what really happened, either can happen and lying can end up being too much hassle. Plus, unsurprisingly employers don’t really like it when you lie to them, so if something happens and they do find out, you can get yourself into trouble and it’s not best to leave a company on bad terms.

Calling in sick is probably not the best option either. Some bosses may see right through your excuses and you can end up in hot-water. If you are looking at multiple jobs, it’s likely you’ll have more than one interview. You don’t want to be calling in sick all the time, especially because this can seriously affect your current employment. So, it’s probably best to come up with a better solution.

Try and avoid taking time off

When you are offered a job interview, it can be easy to instantly think about taking time off. Most interviews will be offered to you during a time that you will be working, so it may seem like the easier option. However, it is always an option to call the employer and tell them of your situation. You can talk about your commitments at work and if necessary, ask for a time either before or after work (if possible) or as late as you can to keep both you, the interviewer and your current manager happy. By calling and letting them know of your commitments, you are showing them that you are a dedicated worker, and, in the future, they may think you are less likely to put them in a similar situation.

If all else fails, you can request a telephone interview. This means you don’t have to leave work during the day and you can potentially use time in your breaks to do the interview. Telephone interviews give the employer a bit of an insight to who you are and if they invite you to a face-to-face interview, you know that there may be a higher chance of you getting the role. Being honest with the interviewer is always best, you don’t want to put your current job or the job you want at risk.

If necessary, take a day’s holiday

In some cases, you may not be able to get around the time arrangements. This could either be because of your current workload or the interviewer has limited time as well. If this interview is important to you, you should think about taking the day off as annual leave – depending in on how far in advance you know. This can be a win-win situation, planned holiday will not upset your current employer as they will make arrangements for you to be covered and this way there is no need to reschedule the interview.

If you are taking holiday for an interview, try and see if there are any other opportunities as well. This way, you can avoid time being wasted on the day and you may be able to attend more than one interview. Try and plan in advance to make the most of the day so you don’t have to end up wasting a lot of your work holiday.

If you are job-seeking, interviews are pretty much unavoidable. You will need to invest some time into prepping for and attending multiple interviews. Unless you’re lucky enough to find the right job on the first attempt. There are many job-seekers juggling both full-time work and a job search, so you’re not the only one. If you are honest with the interviewer and are able to plan in advance, this can help. Although sometimes planning isn’t always a luxury for job-seekers. Make sure you are directing your job-search in the right way for you and you will come out of it a better professional.