The Best Time to Interview for a Job (And Worst Time)

What's the best time to interview? If you've been given an interview recently, you can want to evaluate the optimal time of day and week to arrange your meeting. Scheduling an interview at the optimal time can require avoiding specific periods or negotiating on a time that works for both parties.

best time to interview

Why it's important to consider the interview time

If you've been given an interview recently, you can want to evaluate the optimal time of day and week to arrange your meeting. Scheduling an interview at the optimal time can require avoiding specific periods or negotiating on a time that works for both parties.

  • Avoiding mental exhaustion.
  • Ensure that communication is effective.
  • Developing more favorable relationships.
  • Avoiding the possibility of prejudice.

Avoid mental fog

Scheduling an interview at the most advantageous time can have a significant impact on preventing tiredness. For example, scheduling your appointment for mid-morning will guarantee that the interviewer is attentive and focused. Similarly, scheduling an interview in the middle of the week rather than later in the week helps guarantee that everyone participating in the interview process is at their most productive. This can help you avoid interviewers being mentally exhausted and burned out as a result of executing their professional obligations.

best time to interview

Be clear with communication

Along with minimizing mental tiredness at peak periods, the optimal interview hours can be critical for fostering pleasant and productive dialogue. For instance, you can have a more intimate chat during a mid-morning or mid-week interview, since the interviewer can be more involved in their evaluation of you. This can result in a more in-depth chat, the sharing of shared interests, and the development of a favorable connection with your interviewer, all of which can increase your chances of being employed.

Build relationships

Interviewing at the optimal periods might also be beneficial for developing ties with prospective colleagues. For example, scheduling interviews earlier in the week increases the possibility of complete participation and deeper conversation, which can result in the formation of a lasting relationship with your interviewer. Establishing this kind of professional connection might eventually enhance your chances of being hired for the position.

best time to interview

Avoid a bias

Additionally, the ideal interview times might be a significant role in how an interviewer assesses prospective prospects. For instance, interviewers can occasionally conduct a review process during which they can express favorable or negative opinions on a candidate's suitability for the job. Bias can emerge in this approach when interviewers attempt to balance the quantity of positive and negative comments they make about diverse candidates.

This can occur during the workweek for a variety of reasons, including performance or mental weariness, and can result in an increase in the number of unfavorable ratings at the conclusion of an interview week. This might indicate that scheduling an interview earlier in the day increases your chances of obtaining favorable feedback from the interviewer.

What makes an interview time ideal?

The most effective interview times are those that position you to have the most engaged and interested listeners imaginable.

If you were teaching a class, you would probably avoid specific moments if you wanted your audience to be attentive.

For example, first thing in the morning is usually not the ideal time, nor is the final class of the day on a Friday. Students will either be half (or completely) asleep, or their minds will be elsewhere, rendering your brilliant speech ineffective.

Likewise, for an interview. Because you're presenting yourself and your credentials to an audience, it's in your best advantage to plan your presentation for when your listeners are at their most receptive.

Benefits of picking the right time

While your scheduling decision cannot compensate for inadequate preparation or a lack of credentials, there are several ways in which the day and time of your interview might affect its effectiveness.

Fatigued decision-making can influence recruiting managers' decisions. If you are one of several applicants being interviewed in a row, chances are that towards the end of the day, the candidates will begin to mix together for recruiters.

This places more pressure on you to stand out, making it much more difficult to generate a favorable impression.

Decision making

Additionally, as the day progresses, recruiting managers frequently become conscious of their waning decision-making abilities, making them wary of enthusiastically recommending someone.

This is especially true if, in the afternoon, they discover they have suggested much more applicants than they have eliminated, and they need to begin reducing the field.

However, do not let this intimidate you, as you can be the first glimmer of hope they've seen in a few hours, making you much more memorable.

Due to time constraints, you can miss out on giving critical information. If your meeting runs into lunchtime or the end of the day, there is a possibility that you can have to stop it sooner than you would have planned.

Conversation availability

This is not always a problem, but it might prevent you from sharing all the information or asking all the questions you'd like to, diminishing your chances of connecting with the interviewer during a further conversation.

Whatever time you plan your appointment, there is always a potential that unforeseen conflicts can arise and produce this similar issue, but properly selecting your interview window can help mitigate this risk.

Engage active listening

With more engaged listeners, connection building will be easier. If recruiters are aware and engaged, you have a better chance of connecting with them on a level other than interviewer-interviewee.

Their concentration and vitality can result in more in-depth talks, which will help develop rapport. This can be quite beneficial, since people are more inclined to recall and suggest those with whom they have a connection, even more so if you are equally qualified as numerous other prospects.

After all, wouldn't you prefer to work with someone you know you'll enjoy?

How to schedule an interview at the best time

When arranging your interview, you can want to consider the following recommendations to ensure that the appointment is convenient for everyone involved and has the highest chance of success:

  • Avoid scheduling an interview in the early morning hours.
  • Arrange for the interview to take place in the middle of the week.
  • Schedule interviews away from noon if possible.
  • Make concessions at the most opportune moments.
  • Avoid arranging interviews on and immediately following holidays and weekends.

best time to interview

Avoid the morning

When arranging your interview, one aspect to consider is the time of day. It can be prudent to arrange your interview during a time when the company to which you are applying has the opportunity to begin the day. By avoiding times that are too early, such as when the hiring manager first comes to work, you can guarantee that your interviewer has time to go to work and complete any morning rituals before beginning the interview.

Related: Common interview questions

Middle of the week

Another strategy for choosing the optimum time for your interview is to aim for a day in the center of the workweek. This can include scheduling your meeting on a Tuesday or a Wednesday. By scheduling your interview on these days, you can improve the probability that your interviewer has advanced far enough into the workweek to maintain an optimal level of stamina and productivity. Waiting until after the start of the workweek can also assist prevent the sluggish production levels associated with Monday returns.

Schedule away from lunch

Most professionals have lunch breaks around noon, and scheduling an interview too close to this time period might really impact how your interviewer conducts the talk. For example, scheduling an interview immediately before lunch can result in the interviewer being less interested throughout your talk due to their concentration on lunch options.

Similarly, arranging an interview immediately following lunch can result in a similar situation, since the interviewer can be preoccupied with work left unfinished before to taking their lunch break, diverting their attention away from your interview.

Pick the convenient times

It is not always possible to plan an interview at the most convenient time, and if you are unable to book your interview at the time you believe is ideal, consider compromising with the interviewer's most convenient hours. You can wish to inquire about the ideal days and hours for your appointment. This demonstrates your consideration for others and their professional time.

Avoid holidays

Avoid scheduling your interview just before or after a holiday or long weekend. This might be because many professionals struggle to reclaim their peak levels of productivity and performance following time away from work. Similarly, scheduling an interview immediately before a lengthy vacation can divert the interviewer's attention and cognitive concentration away from your interview and onto their weekend activities.

Finally, while scheduling your interview at the ideal time can not always be possible, by following these steps toward determining the optimal interview arrangement, you can enhance your chances of being hired for the position.

Related: Thank you email after interview

Best times to schedule an interview

When a hiring manager is planning the week ahead, try to schedule a job interview with them at the following days:

  • Tuesday
  • Wednesday
  • Thursday

With the following times:

  • 9am to 11am
  • 2pm to 4pm

Hiring managers will be more alert for job interviews, increasing a job candidates ability to perform well. A morning interview is fine time to schedule an interview.

Common questions

Questions from job seekers.

When's the worst time to interview?

Early morning on Monday's and late in the afternoon on Friday's. And anytime directly after lunch. Hiring managers tend to be less engaged during these times, when conducting interviews.

When's the best time to interview?

While it doesn't guarantee job interviews will go smoothly. Follow these tips:

  • Avoid scheduling an interview in the early morning hours.
  • Arrange for the interview to take place in the middle of the week.
  • Schedule interviews away from noon if possible.
  • Make concessions at the most opportune moments.
  • Avoid arranging interviews on and immediately following holidays and weekends.

Is it better to interview on a Friday or Monday?

Scheduling your interview on Monday increases the likelihood that it will be disturbed and the interviewer's memory of the session will be more fragmented. Friday afternoons are almost as awful as Monday mornings. Avoid Monday mornings and Friday afternoons.

best time to interview

Is it better to interview in the morning or afternoon?

Morning interviews are frequently the greatest option for job seekers. By scheduling the interview early in the day, the applicant will have less time to become apprehensive or agitated. Additionally, they'll have the appropriate amount of energy and won't be as exhausted as they can be later in the day.

Sources

best time to interview

Favorite Resources

Our favorite resources are included below.

Job interview resources

Resume and cover letter resources

Job search resources

free interview question and answer full guide

Interview Question and Answer Guide (PDF)

Get our full interview preparation guide. Complete with common interview questions and example answers. Free. No email required.

Grab the PDF
author: patrick algrim
About the author

Patrick Algrim is a Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW), NCDA Certified Career Counselor (CCC), and general career expert. Patrick has completed the NACE Coaching Certification Program (CCP). And has been published as a career expert on Forbes, Glassdoor, Entrepreneur (Profile), Dice.com, WorkWise, American Express, Reader's Digest, LiveCareer, Zety, Yahoo, Recruiter.com, SparkHire, SHRM.org, Process.st, FairyGodBoss, HRCI.org, St. Edwards University, NC State University, IBTimes.com, Thrive Global, TMCnet.com, Work It Daily, Workology, Career Guide, MyPerfectResume, College Career Life, The HR Digest, WorkWise, Career Cast, Elite Staffing, Women in HR, All About Careers, Upstart HR, The Street, Monster, The Ladders, Introvert Whisperer, and many more. Find him on LinkedIn.

Share

Help us by spreading the word