If you've never heard of a happy hour interview before, you may have felt confused when the company you're interviewing with suggested going to the pub. Don’t worry, this process is completely normal and common during the recruitment process!
Your digital marketing or ecommerce employer most likely wants to get to know you better to see if you'd be a good fit for the team. The interviewer recognises your talent but wants to be certain they're making the right hire. A happy hour interview is the perfect way to do this.
However, you could still be competing with another top digital marketing or ecommerce candidate. So, make sure you’re still using the interview tips you've received and being professional.
Remember it's still an interview!
Acting professionally is still important, even when in a casual setting. Just because you're discussing your potential new digital marketing or ecommerce job over drinks, doesn't mean you should let loose like you might when drinking with friends. It's all about balance.
You should aim to be the most charming and sociable version of yourself during a happy hour interview, whilst keeping the situation appropriate. Digital marketing and ecommerce employers look for these attributes throughout the recruitment process when hiring new talent.
Allow yourself to relax by enjoying a couple of drinks during your happy hour interview, but make sure you don't have too many. Future digital marketing or ecommerce employers won’t be as impressed with your drunk dancing as your friends might.
Don’t forget the job search advice you’ve previously received. You can still highlight your skills and experience less formally during a happy hour interview. Use anecdotes about previous job roles, skills you’ve used/developed, or the soft skills that have helped you throughout your work.
It’s not all about you
Unlike your previous interview, this happy hour interview should be a lot more conversational and interactive. The digital marketing or ecommerce employer wants to get to know you just like any other new acquaintance would.
When meeting new people, you would ask questions, be interested in their responses and stories, and connect with them. This digital marketing or ecommerce interviewer is no different.
The digital marketing or ecommerce interviewer is looking to see if you can connect with them and the team. Happy hour interviews aim to find out if you’re interesting and personable. Would you be a likeable and friendly representation for the company? Why not check out our previous blog The Best Questions to Ask at The End of an Interview.
During this recruitment process, don't skip the small talk or steer the conversation back towards the job role. Use this time to show your character and learn about your potential employer’s personality and interests. Nobody wants to talk about work 24/7. If you end up securing the job, you'd already have relevant topics to bring up during conversation in the office!
Don’t worry if you're not a big drinker! The digital marketing or ecommerce employer just wants to interact with you socially, not get drunk. Happy hour interviews can be done completely sober. There’s no problem with ordering a soft drink or water during the recruitment process. Just relax and be yourself!
On the other hand, you might be worried about your nerves getting the better of you and drinking too much. If this is the case, you could order single measures or half-pints to ensure you don't overindulge. You could even set yourself a limit of 2-3 drinks during the happy hour interview for example.
Make sure you are mindful and considerate of the price. If the digital marketing or ecommerce employer is ordering a pint of beer, it’s probably best not to order the most expensive bottle of wine on the menu. Let them order first or order something simple during your happy hour interview.
What to wear
As this happy hour interview is a more casual meeting, you don’t need to dress formally as you did for your initial interview. On the other hand, don't choose an outfit you’d wear on a night out with friends, or to pop to the shops in.
You can still show your personal style, just be conscious of things such as necklines and loud colours/patterns. Dress to look put together and relaxed for most digital marketing or ecommerce happy hour interviews.
The industry of the role you're applying for should also be taken into consideration. For example, if you’ve applied for a digital marketing or ecommerce role in finance, dressing smart would be the best option. However, if you’re being interviewed for a digital marketing or ecommerce role within advertising or media, you can dress more informal and relaxed for the happy hour interview.
During your happy hour interview, be honest but choose answers that best represent you. You could take some time to prepare some responses beforehand. What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? What do you do to relax after work? Think of some appropriate answers that could spark conversation or even common interests!
For example, reading, playing music, or partaking in sports are all great hobbies to discuss throughout the happy hour interview. However, telling your future digital marketing or ecommerce employer that you usually stay out till 3am drinking every Friday to relax after a busy week may not give the best first impression.
Be professional but authentic. This will give you the best chance of being hired for your chosen digital marketing or ecommerce role.
If you enjoyed this blog, why not check out our previous blog, The Most Important Skills Digital Marketing Recruiters Look For.