By Editorial Staff

BioSpace, November 20, 2018 —

What happens in the final moments of a job interview is probably one of the most overlooked aspects of the entire job seeking or hiring process, and how you conduct yourself at these critical final moments can sway the offer in your favor (or out of it), especially if you’re in tight competition with other highly-qualified applicants.

Naturally, job candidates are much more focused on crafting compelling resumes and cover letters, answering the tough questions, and negotiating offers. But, the way you wrap up the job interview is probably the last face-to-face interaction you’ll have with a potential new employer before a job offer, and you want that final exchange to be meaningful and positive. There’s a lot to be said here for “leaving on a high note.”

So how can you ensure you make the best final impression possible on your interview so that the last thing they remember of you is positive?

You want your very last touchpoint with your potential new employer to be as pleasant and positive as possible. 

It’s your grand finale. Act like it!

Realize the importance of the final moments of the job interview, and don’t slink out with little to say. This is the perfect opportunity to reiterate your interest in the position, recover from any mistakes or fumbles in the job interview, establish future contact, or in general just leave a great impression of your interpersonal and social skills. Remember, your interviewer isn’t just thinking of you as a collection of skills or competencies, they’re also interviewing what kind of a colleague you’ll be and how well you’ll fit in with their team on a personal level, so let your personality come through in these more casual moments (the hellos and goodbyes).

Reiterate your enthusiasm for the position.

Take the opportunity to “wrap it all up” and let them know you’re just as interested in them as they are in you and that a job offer would likely be reciprocated. Again, interviews are not just about identifying candidates that have the right skills for a job, but employers also want to know that they’ll be bringing on loyal, engaged colleagues who are excited about contributing to the organization and will care about the quality of their work. They want employees who will invest in them, just as they are investing in you. The final minutes of an interview are a great time to convey your interest in the position and excitement around joining their team.

Affirm what a great fit you are

Even if you’ve made this clear throughout the interview (which, of course, you should have), reaffirming a few of the most important reasons why you’re a perfect fit for the position is an excellent closing for any job interview. You’re driving home the most important takeaways about your candidacy for the interviewer and making it abundantly clear why you’re the best choice. This is memorable stuff.

Ask about next steps

Not only is this just useful information that you probably want to know anyway, asking what you can expect next in the hiring process is another — albeit a bit more subtle — way to convey that you’re still a very interested, committed candidate who wants the job and is proactive about moving things along.

This is also an appropriate time to mention that you’re happy to provide them with any additional materials or information they might need to make their decision. If there are some outstanding materials or information they requested or that came up in the interview, mention again that you’ll be getting this to them ASAP… and then do it.

Mind your manners

In the hiring process, manners matter, and you want your very last touchpoint with your potential new employer to be as pleasant and positive as possible. Remember to thank them for their time and their thoughtful questions, smile, make great eye contact, and offer a solid handshake.