The format of the interview will vary depending on the role applied for – you may have a one-on-one interview, or you may face a panel of two or three interviewers.
A first interview could be conducted online, on the phone or in person. If the interview is done in person, it could be held at a P&G office, a university campus or a conference.
You may then be invited to a second interview with one or more senior managers from Procter and Gamble.
Most interviews last somewhere between 45 minutes to an hour, but there are no strict time limits.
During your interview, you will be asked questions about your past experiences, as well as how you would respond to hypothetical situations you might come across in the role.
Your interviewer(s) will be looking for evidence of the key behaviours P&G believes are crucial for success within the company.
These are summed up in its Peak Performance Factors:
There is more information on the Peak Performance Factors in our article on the P&G application process.
The interviewers will be looking for you to display skills and qualities such as leadership, teamwork, innovative thinking, a desire to develop oneself as well as others, and the discipline to prioritise effectively.
For every question and situation posed, you must provide as full an answer as possible, giving specific examples that set your response in context and describe actions taken and outcomes achieved.
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Competency-based questions are used in P&G interviews to assess your skills, behaviours and knowledge.
Each question is specifically targeted towards a key competency required for the role.
Interviewers want to hear about real situations that demonstrate how you have effectively used the competency or competencies they are assessing.
To answer these questions successfully, you need to prepare some strong examples.
The first step is to identify the competencies your interviewer will be looking for. For P&G, the key competencies are summed up in the Peak Performance Factors outlined earlier in this article, so make sure you are familiar with those.
You should also study the job description in detail, and draw up a list of any particular skills and behaviours that are required.
Next, you need to think about specific times when you have demonstrated each of these skills and behaviours:
The STAR interview technique is useful for preparing answers to competency-based questions. This method involves breaking your answer down into four sections:
Look for ways to relate the competency you are displaying back to the role you are applying for. Remember that you may need to adjust the focus of the story depending on how the question is framed in the interview.
Try to have a few examples prepared for each competency, so that you can tailor your answers accordingly and avoid repeating yourself.
Situational interview questions ask you to put yourself into a hypothetical work situation and test how you would respond.
These questions can seem harder, as you have to think on the spot about solutions and responses to fictional scenarios.
However, it is possible to prepare for these questions much as you would for competency-based questions.
The interviewer is still looking for you to demonstrate one or more of the key competencies required for the role.
And while you will need to provide some detail about how you would respond to the hypothetical scenario, the best answers provide concrete evidence by describing how you have handled similar situations in the past.
So, if asked how you would handle conflict with a team member, you should talk about how you have dealt with conflict with a colleague or peer previously, and how you would apply what you learned from that experience.
You can prepare examples to back up your answers in the same way you would for competency-based questions, by identifying the key competencies required and then using the STAR technique to show how you have demonstrated these in the past.
Once you’re in the interview, asking a few questions about the scenario you’re presented with can be a helpful way to gain a bit of time to think about the best response.
It also shows the interviewer that you’re a methodical, critical thinker who gathers all the information they need before coming to a decision.
The interviewer is also likely to go into greater detail about the skills and experiences you have outlined in your CV and application.
You should review all the material you have provided ahead of the interview, and be prepared to answer questions on any key aspects.
Depending on the role you have applied for, you may also be asked some questions about the type of work you could be doing when you first start working for P&G.
The job profile will tell you something about working for P&G, but you should get to know as much as possible about the company and how your role would fit into the bigger picture.
Visit the P&G career areas and watch videos available on the website for a taste of what it would be like to work there.
Here are some more examples of possible P&G interview questions:
You will also be given the opportunity to ask your own questions about P&G during the interview. Come prepared with some informed, intelligent questions that demonstrate your passion to work for P&G and your willingness to learn more about the company.
Consider asking questions around P&G’s growth potential, its leadership style, attitude to social responsibility or efforts at diversity.
Think about what you would want from an employer in these areas and ask questions to establish how you align.