In this article
Job interview preparation can sometimes feel directionless without a trusted mentor for feedback, but this doesn’t have to be the case in 2024. Several AI tools are now publicly available, notably ChatGPT. These can transform how you approach the job search, from simulating mock interviews to crafting a cover letter that catches the recruiter’s attention.
At JobTest.org, we’re at the forefront of integrating modern career insights with the latest AI advancements in our career test. Leveraging our expertise in career strategy and technology, we’ll show you how to use ChatGPT to prepare for an interview, including tailored prompts and essential tips to harness its full potential.
What Is ChatGPT and How Can It Help With Interviews?
ChatGPT is a language model developed by OpenAI that can understand and generate human-like text based on the input it receives. It can analyze vast amounts of data, learn patterns, and produce relevant and coherent responses for practically anything you ask. The basic version of ChatGPT is free to use (and works just fine for interview preparation), or you can upgrade to ChatGPT Plus to access more advanced chatbots with additional features.
How ChatGPT Simulates Interviews
ChatGPT can pretend to act like a subject matter expert in any field you specify, including an interviewer in your desired industry. After you provide instructions and context, ChatGPT can help you generate sample answers and prepare for various topics and situations, from common interview staples to more complex, role-oriented questions.
For instance, you can ask ChatGPT to conduct a realistic mock interview, revise your responses to fit the job role, and brainstorm how to frame your experiences and skills in the most impactful way, among several more potential scenarios. Regardless of how you use ChatGPT for interview preparation, the better you can communicate your expectations, the more it will understand how to assist you best.
ChatGPT vs. Traditional Job Interview Preparation
The interview process with ChatGPT takes place in a safe and controlled environment, and the AI will always give its full, undivided attention. It can adjust to meet your needs and perform numerous functions that you otherwise wouldn’t be able to practice, which is invaluable for job seekers who don’t have a professional mentor or colleague for traditional preparation.
Moreover, you never have to work around ChatGPT’s schedule and can use it practically anywhere with an internet connection, allowing you to build confidence and refine your approach whenever is convenient.
On the other hand, traditional interview preparation still has its advantages, namely the signals exchanged through human interaction that an algorithm can’t understand with words alone. ChatGPT can’t pick up on factors like body language, tone, or talking speed. While it can provide valuable feedback, it can’t completely replace the connection and perspective you get from interacting with another person.
As a result, it’s best to use ChatGPT in combination with other methods, such as meeting with a dedicated career coach.
ChatGPT Interview Preparation: Step-by-Step Instructions
While it’s not a complete replacement for traditional preparation, ChatGPT is undoubtedly one of the best (and most accessible) tools to practice and strategize for your upcoming job interview. Here’s how you can get started and hold a realistic mock interview with ChatGPT:
Step 1: Set Up Your Job Interview Scenario
ChatGPT, like humans, performs at its best when the user provides context and states their desired objective using clear language. For your first prompt, ask ChatGPT to act like a hiring manager for the job role and industry you’re targeting. Tell it about yourself and include specific details such as your resume and CV (or have ChatGPT help you write a resume), the job description, and any company-specific information you can share. The more detailed and specific your input, the more relevant the AI’s questions and feedback will be.
Ensure you specify the level of position you’re aiming for, whether it’s an entry-level or senior role. ChatGPT will adjust the questions' complexity and focus to accommodate those expectations. It’s also a good idea to highlight topics you particularly want to discuss, like questions about leadership, dealing with conflict, or technical skills.
At the end of your prompt, ask ChatGPT to summarize what you’ve provided and wait for your confirmation before starting the next step. If you’re satisfied with the summary, you’re ready to move on. If you want to make any changes, provide additional feedback until ChatGPT aligns with your expectations.
Step 2: Ask ChatGPT to Generate Relevant Interview Questions
You will next instruct ChatGPT to generate interview questions. To do this, ask ChatGPT to create a set of typical interview questions tailored to your specified role and industry. This prompt can be as simple as “Please generate interview questions for a [specified role] in [industry].”
To take it a step further, you can ask for questions covering different interview types and categories, specifically behavioral, situational, and technical questions (see prompts below). If you have ChatGPT Plus or the “Browse with Bing” plugin, which enables internet browsing, you can also ask it to include questions based on recent trends or developments in your industry. Alternatively, you can research these topics and summarize them yourself with the basic version of ChatGPT.
Once ChatGPT generates a list of interview questions, take some time to review and brainstorm how you might answer them. Feel free to jot down notes and highlight any that stick out to you, especially if you don’t have a clear answer in mind. You can also ask ChatGPT for sample interview answers based on the information you provide, such as accomplishments from your resume. When you feel comfortable with the topics and at least have a general feel for how you would respond, you’re ready to start the mock interview.
Step 3: Conduct the Mock Interview
The next phase is running through a mock interview with ChatGPT. Here’s how to make the most of the simulation:
- Start the Interview: Ask ChatGPT to act like they’re an experienced interviewer in the field you’re applying for. Instruct it to ask you the prepared questions in a random order and treat the conversation as an actual interview, considering your responses fairly and objectively. If ChatGPT generated a long list of questions you can’t answer in one sitting, specify how many you’d like it to ask. When no more questions are left, ask ChatGPT to conclude the interview and await the next set of instructions.
- Answer the Questions: As ChatGPT asks you the questions, respond as though you were speaking to the real interviewer. You should treat each question thoughtfully and professionally, using complete sentences and proper grammar. Avoid referencing outside materials, such as your resume or the internet, and trust your immediate reactions (rather than editing as you go) to provide the most authentic responses.
- Simulate Different Interview Personas: For additional practice, you can instruct ChatGPT to take on different interviewing styles, such as conversational, supportive, challenging, or technical, depending on what you may encounter during the actual interview (or what you feel least comfortable with).
After the first mock interview, feel free to make changes and experiment with different prompts, topics, and interview personas. Aim to diversify your practice and try various exercises to become more adaptable, which will help you handle a wide range of real interview situations.
Step 4: Analyze Feedback and Refine Specific Interview Skills
After answering each question, request honest and constructive feedback from ChatGPT on your responses. You can ask for specific feedback, such as the clarity of your answers, the relevance and impact of your examples, or the overall impression you might leave on the interviewer.
When it provides you with feedback, take time to review each piece and ask for further clarification if something doesn’t make sense. Try to understand what the feedback implies and how to improve your responses while remembering the strengths and positives to carry into the actual interview.
Based on the feedback, refine any necessary interview skills or questions that ChatGPT suggests. Identify the questions you found particularly challenging and consider how else you can approach them (or ask ChatGPT for tips and suggestions). The more you encounter and reason with these tough questions, the easier it will feel to answer them.
Step 5: Finalize Interview Preparation
As you wrap up your first job interview practice with ChatGPT, you can start a new mock interview, adjust the focus or type, or simply finish the exercise. When you’re done, it’s important to combine everything you’ve learned and practiced, so conclude with a final review session and cover the key points you worked on.
This might include revisiting challenging topics, reviewing your must-have talking points (and what to avoid in the real interview), or polishing anything that didn’t come across as intended. Take some time to gather your takeaways and areas where you’ve seen the most improvement, as well as any topics that you feel need work.
Finally, if you can, arrange a real mock interview to practice your revised responses and see how they come across. If this isn’t possible, you can also meet with a career coach to discuss your interview responses and ensure you’re ready to handle any questions thrown your way.
ChatGPT Prompts for Job Interview Prep
To maximize your interview preparation, you should experiment with different ChatGPT prompts that best reflect your situation and what you want to practice. Here are several prompts you can try for behavioral, technical, and personal questions, as well as post-interview success, though you should adjust them for your situation as needed:
Prompts for Behavioral Interview Questions
Behavioral interviews primarily focus on past accomplishments and experiences that demonstrate your qualifications for the role, so you want to have tangible and compelling examples to reference. You can prepare for behavioral questions with the following prompts:
- Generate behavioral interview questions related to a team project I led in the software development industry, focusing on collaboration and conflict resolution.
- Develop behavioral interview questions on effective communication in a cross-cultural team environment relevant to my experience in international business management.
- List behavioral interview questions assessing creativity and innovation for a marketing campaign I spearheaded.
- Generate behavioral interview questions focusing on organizational skills for managing multiple projects in a fast-paced advertising agency.
- Develop behavioral interview questions assessing my approach to learning and personal development in a challenging academic research project or extracurricular opportunity.
Prompts for Technical Interview Questions
A technical interview evaluates your aptitude for any skill relevant to your industry. They’re especially common in software, IT, computer science, and similar fields, though they can also focus on assessing soft skills like communication. Here are technical interview question prompts to try:
- List technical interview questions about my expertise in advanced machine-learning algorithms for a senior data scientist role.
- Create technical interview questions focusing on modern web development frameworks and best practices for a full-stack developer position in a tech startup.
- List technical questions related to my knowledge of advanced accounting principles and financial analysis for an accountant role in a multinational corporation.
- Generate technical interview questions testing my proficiency in electronic circuit design for an electrical engineer role in the aerospace industry.
- Provide technical interview questions on mechanical engineering principles and CAD software for a mechanical engineer role in the automotive sector.
Prompts for Personal Interview Questions
Personal interviews focus on how your personality, values, and experiences mesh with the company’s culture. They can vary in focus and topics, depending on the industry, but mainly seek to determine whether you’re aligned with the company’s goals and purpose. Experiment with the following prompts to practice for personal interview questions:
- Create interview questions to explore my motivation and passion for transitioning into the renewable energy sector based on my background in traditional energy industries.
- Generate interview questions highlighting how my values align with the core principles of a non-profit organization focused on environmental conservation.
- Develop interview questions assessing my approach to work-life balance, considering my experience in high-pressure corporate law offices.
- Craft interview questions about handling personal failure and learning experiences relevant to my background in competitive sports coaching.
- List interview questions to understand my perspective on diversity and inclusion based on my volunteer work with multicultural communities.
Prompts for Post-Interview Success
After the interview, you want to maintain a positive impression and show continued interest to increase your chances of securing an offer. This includes follow-up communication, performance evaluation, and planning for future steps. You can try the following prompts for your post-interview strategy:
- Generate a follow-up email template expressing gratitude and reiterating my interest in the role, including a mention of our discussion on digital transformation.
- Create a list of intriguing questions I can ask the hiring manager for an HR role focusing on the company culture.
- Provide suggestions for a polite inquiry email to check on the status of my application for a marketing director role two weeks post-interview.
- Formulate a strategy for connecting on LinkedIn with interviewers from my recent graphic designer interview, including a personalized message.
- Create a checklist of post-interview evaluation points for a nursing position that focuses on responses, interviewer reactions, and areas of improvement.
Other Tips and Tricks for Using ChatGPT
ChatGPT can be an incredibly versatile tool for interview preparation, but it can take some trial and error to get the best results. Here are some insightful tips to make your interview practice sessions with ChatGPT more productive:
Use Your Best Judgment
ChatGPT, like any tool, isn’t perfect and occasionally makes mistakes. You should fact-check its responses and carefully read any information you plan on using, such as resume revisions or follow-up notes. Likewise, if it provides advice that doesn’t seem right, trust your gut and follow what you think is right.
Context and Specifics
ChatGPT relies on the user’s input to produce relevant responses, so be as specific as possible in your prompts. Include details about the role, your personal and professional background, interview style and type, and anything else that describes the situation to ChatGPT. It’s also a good idea to ask for confirmation at the end of your prompt and ensure it’s aligned with your objectives.
One of the critical skills in interviews is managing your response time, but ChatGPT doesn’t necessarily know how long it takes you to answer its questions. As a result, you should set your own time limits and practice articulating your thoughts without rambling or second-guessing yourself.
Practice Answering Unconventional Questions
Interviews often include unexpected or unconventional questions to assess your creativity and adaptability. You should use ChatGPT to simulate these scenarios and prepare for curveballs you don’t expect. For example, you can instruct ChatGPT to randomly ask you unconventional questions not found on the list it generated before, or you can ask for a list of unexpected questions to consider ahead of time.
Talk with ChatGPT
If you want the most realistic experience, you can upgrade to ChatGPT Plus and download the app on your smartphone, allowing you to talk with the AI. You can speak normally, and ChatGPT will respond in the voice you choose, which makes it feel more like an interview than typing back and forth.
How JobTest.org Can Prepare You for Success
While ChatGPT allows you to simulate and practice for various job interview scenarios, JobTest.org complements this with advanced career testing and personalized career coaching. Our AI-backed career test analyzes your personal and professional attributes to match you with careers that truly align with your ambitions, as well as your expectations for income, satisfaction, and work-life balance.
Moreover, our expert career coaches can help you focus on fine-tuning your interview strategy and how to translate your skills into real-world interview success. We understand that every interview is a unique opportunity, and we aim to ensure you are exceptionally prepared, both in practice and approach. With JobTest.org, you’re well-equipped to present your best self to potential employers, and it starts with taking our tried-and-true career test.