New Interviewing Etiquette in the Post-COVID Era

A person in business clothes holding a pen and paper sits across from someone with folded hands.

Michigan Works! is ready to guide you through the new rules of interviewing. Interviews are difficult for both you – the interviewee – and the employer, especially now that COVID-19 has modified long-standing practices. Here are answers to some of the questions you may have:

Can we do face-to-face interviews? 

Yes, interviews can be done either one-on-one or in a panel-style interview while practicing social distancing and using PPE (Personal Protective Equipment), which includes masks and possibly even a plexiglass barrier between the participants. You may be asked to temporarily remove your mask for identification purposes, which can be done while staying six feet apart, according to social distancing guidelines. There is an exception when someone is giving a speech (the interviewee). You may take your mask off if you stay twelve feet away from the audience (the employer).

Do I wear a mask to the interview even if I have been vaccinated? 

Yes, current Michigan COVID-19 guidelines require that masks are to be worn indoors in a public space. 

Should employers and interview candidates shake hands? 

While this has been normal etiquette in the past, it is no longer the appropriate practice when meeting. Following social distancing at all times doesn’t provide the chance to shake hands. As an alternative, maintain good eye contact and smile; they can see your smile in your eyes even if they can’t see your smile behind the mask.

An employer has requested a virtual interview, but I don’t have a computer. What can I do?

Michigan Works! offices are open by appointment and have interview rooms available for you to use. Call your local Michigan Works! office and speak to a Talent Specialist. They will schedule you a room. Michigan Works! can also assist you with interview preparation.

Michigan Works! is ready to help guide you through this new process. We are open by appointment, so please call 800-285-9675 or text 906-629-1976 to reserve an interview room or to talk with a Talent Specialist.