Interview Process

Preparing for an interview

Interviews allow you to:
•    Showcase your knowledge, skills, and abilities as they directly relate to the position 
•    Share any unique lived experience that contributes to the role
•    Present any sort of portfolio
•    Find out more about the position and the City of Vancouver so you can decide whether the role is a fit for you

We welcome applications from persons with disabilities. We will actively seek to make any reasonable adjustments or accommodations to our hiring and selection process to adapt it to your needs. Let the recruiter know, and they will be sure to accommodate your request.

Step 1: Phone pre-screen

Your first interaction with us will likely be with a recruiter. It may be by telephone or virtually by using an online link for a video call. 

This is not a formal interview but an exploratory call where they:

  • Will confirm requirements such as education and experience
  • Share more about the position or the department and answer any questions you might have

The phone screen may look different depending on which position you’re applying for. 

It's a good idea to anticipate the kind of questions that you may be asked and practice your answers ahead of time.

At a minimum, you should be prepared to:

  • Answer questions about the information you have on your resume
  • Explain why you're applying for a specific role
  • Tell us why you want to work at the City of Vancouver
  • Be clear, concise, and professional
  • Keep the information you provide relevant to the role

Step 2: First interview

When your phone screen is complete, and the hiring manager has shortlisted you to move forward in the process, you'll be asked to meet our hiring panel for a virtual or in-person interview.

Interview tips

  • Think about the questions you may be asked, write them down, and prepare your answers. What information will your interviewer want to know that has not been covered in your resume or initial phone call?
  • Get to know the people who will be part of the interview process ahead of time. Review the profiles of the hiring manager, panel participants, and any other team members on LinkedIn.
  • Spend some time getting to know a bit more about the City of Vancouver and the job you're applying for. Be clear in your mind about why you're applying for the role and why you want to be part of the City of Vancouver.
  • Be prepared for behavioural questions. These are questions that require you to give specific examples of how you have behaved in response to a specific situation or challenge at work or even outside the workplace. We often recommend applicants use the STAR method to make sure they provide the correct details:
    • Situation: Give context to your answer
    • Task: Elaborate on the challenge and your role
    • Action: Explain how you handled the situation or overcame the challenge
    • Result: What you achieved in the process
  • Reflect on each question and answer it completely. If you're not clear about the meaning of the question, ask for clarification or more information.
  • When providing recent and relevant examples of your experience during the interview, feel free to take them from work, volunteering, parenting/caregiving, and recreational activities. What's most important is that your answer is relevant to the question you're being asked.
  • Prepare a list of questions you may wish to ask about the role or about the City of Vancouver after the interview. Remember, this is an opportunity for both sides to learn more about each other.
  • Practice, practice, practice. Rehearse your answers— out loud, if it helps—so that you'll feel comfortable and prepared during the interview.