Interview coaching is becoming increasingly common in 2023’s competitive jobs market. More and more candidates are going the extra mile to try to get an advantage and they see interview coaching as an effective way to differentiate themselves.
But what exactly does an interview coach do?
It’s still a fairly new industry, so in this article we’ll explain exactly what an interview coach does, how you might benefit from using one, and what to look out for. We’ll also take a quick look at costs, so you know what price range to expect.
Let’s get started.
What does an interview coach do?
An interview coach is someone who works with you to increase your chances of impressing in a job interview and landing a job offer. They will teach you how to give better quality answers and communicate more confidently. If they’ve worked in your industry, they can give you specific insights into what your interviewers will be looking for.
Let’s go a little deeper into exactly what an interview coach can do for you.
Often, the most effective way to use an interview coach is to book a mock interview with one who has experience working or coaching for your specific role.
Your coach will arrive at the session ready with interview questions that are typical for the role you’re applying for, and for 45 minutes you will treat it like a real interview. The coach then spends the final 15 minutes giving you expert feedback on your performance and explaining how you can best improve.
An experienced coach will be able to zoom in on your weaker areas and give you highly actionable, specific feedback that you can take away and use to improve your performance.
2. Tell you if you’re ready
Some candidates like to use interview coaching to gauge their readiness levels so they can adapt their interview preparation accordingly.
If your coach has experience interviewing for the role and company you’re targeting, they will have a good idea of the expectations and will be able to tell you whether or not you’d get hired on the basis of your mock interview.
That way, you can either go into your interview full of confidence, or take the necessary steps to improve in the time you have left.
3. Help you prepare more efficiently
Instead of booking a session with an interview coach as kind of a “dress rehearsal” for the real thing, you might choose to use a coach earlier on in your preparation process. That way, you’ve got more time to leverage the coach’s insights and feedback and really drill down on your weaker areas.
This is particularly effective for candidates applying for prestigious roles at companies such as Google, where they’ll face many rounds of interviews and will need to prepare for weeks or months beforehand. Using a coach early on in the process can save hours or even days of prep time.
4. Help you with nerves and confidence
Apparently, 93% of people feel nervous before a job interview. Unless you’re one of the 7% with ice in their veins, you’ll need to find a way to deal with nerves and remain calm and project confidence.
The more you practice something, the less stressful it should become, so mock interviews with a coach can really help reduce anxiety. A good interview coach should be able to give you some tips on how to deal with interview nerves and get you in a more confident frame of mind going into the real thing.
5. Give insights into the interview process
Too often, interview processes at large corporations are slow and rather opaque. Glassdoor.com is a really useful website for learning more about interview processes at top companies. But if you really want some insight from someone who’s been on the inside of the process, book an interview coach who has run interviews at the company you’re interviewing for.
6. Help you structure your answers
Almost any answer you give in an interview should have a structure, even when you’re answering a simple question such as “Why do you want to work here?”.
You can use common frameworks to structure your answers. For example, most people use the STAR method for answering behavioral questions (though we believe that the SPSIL method is better). An interview coach can help you learn the frameworks that are relevant to your role.
7. Improve your communication skills (verbal and non-verbal)
Of course, demonstrating good communication skills is critical to acing an interview.
A good interview coach can help you organize your thoughts, clarify your message, and use language that is simple and easy to understand. They should also be able to give you tips on your non-verbal communication, which is also important.
8. Share valuable prep resources
A good interview coach will be able to point you towards useful prep resources that you might not have found otherwise. This could be in the form of links to blogs and videos online or recommendations for a prep book that is really worth purchasing.
This can save you a lot of time. There is a wealth of material out there for interview prep but it’s difficult to sift through it all to get to the really high quality content.
9. Help you increase the salary offer
Working with an interview coach can help you ace the interview and put yourself into a stronger negotiating position than you would achieved otherwise.
In addition, coaches and coaching websites increasingly also offer salary negotiation coaching as a separate service.
10. Improve your resume
Some interview coaches also offer resume review services, where instead of running a mock interview they’ll take the time to go through your resume and pinpoint areas for improvement.
You’ll find hundreds of websites offering a resume review with a recruiting professional. However, some candidates prefer to work on their resume with an interview coach because they want to work with someone who is specialized in their role.
What an interview coach doesn’t do
Now we’ve seen what an interview coach does, let’s clarify a few things that they do not do.
- An interview coach won’t guarantee that you’ll pass the interview. At the end of the day, it’s still up to you to go and perform on the day.
- They won’t use their network to get you a job. Interview coaches are usually extremely well-connected professionals with a wealth of experience and contacts, but you’re not paying for access to that, you’re paying for the coaching session.
- Don’t expect them to spoon-feed you. They can help you improve the structure and quality of your answers and how you deliver them, but they won’t put the words in your mouth. You’ll need to do the necessary prep time on top of your coaching sessions.
Where can I find an interview coach?
You can find 100+ interview coaches right here on IGotAnOffer's interview coaching platform. Our coaches specialize in tech, consulting and finance roles but their experiences encompass a wide range of other industries too.
Of course, there are plenty of alternatives to IGotAnOffer, especially if you're willing to spend a bit more. For an overview, check out our review of the best interview coaching services 2023.
Hiring an interview coach will cost you anything between $100 and $400 per hour. This variation in price can be because of the quality of the coach, but sometimes seems to be pretty arbitrary, so it’s worth comparing websites.
For example, at IGotAnOffer you can book an ex-interviewer from the world of tech, consulting or finance for around $140 per hour. Meanwhile popular coaching site The Muse charges $329 for a 75 minute session.
You can also find people offering to coach you on sites such as Fiverr who offer 20 minute sessions for as little as $35, but be prepared for a different level of user experience.
If you have a job interview coming up and you don’t want to leave anything to chance, we’d highly recommend considering an interview coach, either on our platform or one of the other many good websites out there.
Not only will it help you nail your interviews, but it’s a great way to improve your communication skills and self-confidence, benefits which will have a lasting impact in your career.
We work with over 200 highly experienced coaches on our platform. Browse through them and see whose profile fits what you’re looking for. Coaches only need 12 hours notice to be booked; you could start practicing as early as today.