Similar to full-time jobs, when interviewing for a part-time job, it’s important to be prepared. That means practicing answers to interview questions that are specific to part-time work.
In addition to questions about your skills and abilities, expect to be asked about your availability and preferred work schedule. Your future employer will most likely ask about your schedule and availability, given that they might anticipate full-time work down the road, or to confirm that the job is part-time and would like to gauge your satisfaction with the hours available.
In order to be successful during your virtual interview, it’s important to keep your responses general and enthusiastic about the job and the company and be prepared to discuss your availability and schedule.
Sample Answers About Full-Time vs Part-Time Employment
The following answers would work well – be sure to tailor them to your particular situation:
“Right now, my education/family/children prevent me from considering full-time employment, but I wouldn’t rule it out at some point in the future.”
“What’s important to me is that I enjoy the work and the people I’m working with. I have many interests, and having a part-time job allows me the time to pursue them.”
“I’m interested in this position at your company because (give the aspects of the job that interest you most). I’m available to work part-time but I’m interested in exploring opportunities at your company.”
In addition, be sure to discuss your flexibility for hours, days of the week, and shifts you are available. This will show the interviewer how you could be a good fit for their needs.
Sample Answers for When You Prefer to Work Full-Time and the Job is Part-Time
Employers may post jobs as part-time or temporary, so they can assess whether new employees would make a good full-time employee. If you can find out this key bit of information, you will be able to craft your answer better. Take a look at these possible answers:
“I’m available for part-time work now and I am interested in working for your company. In the coming months, I will be available to work more hours.” (You can give a reason if you have one, such as family schedule, education schedule, etc.)
“I would love the opportunity to become a full-time employee. I am very excited at the prospect of this part-time job, but I would gladly accept a full-time position if it were ever available. I believe my organizational and time management skills would make me a very strong full-time employee.”
“I’ve wanted to work for your company for years because of your consistent success in the industry. I would definitely like to become a permanent employee for such a terrific organization. I’m a quick learner with a passion for the work you do.”
If you discover that the company rarely promotes part-time staff to full-time, you should focus on why you are interested in working for the company in the offered position. You don’t want to raise a red flag that you are looking to move on to a full-time position elsewhere.
How to Respond If You Only Can Work Part-Time Hours
It’s important to do as much research as possible before the interview to explore the hours, shifts, and days of the week that the job requires. See if you’re a good match considering your availability based on child care, education schedule, commuting logistics, etc. You can use this as the basis for your answer:
“I’m interested in working in the position for your company because (give reasons) and I am available (give the hours/days/shifts).”
“I enjoy the flexibility of part-time work and am excited for the chance to give my undivided attention to your company three days a week. If my schedule changes in the future and allows me the time to do my best work for you full time, I would love the opportunity for a permanent job.”
“At this time, temp work is best for my family and I. I think I will fit in very well with your company culture, and for now, I think I can do that best in a temp position.”
Common Part-Time Job Interview Questions
- Review the questions you will most likely be asked and consider how you’ll respond.
- What days/hours are you available to work?
- Do you have any activities that would prevent you from working your schedule?
- Would you prefer full-time employment to part-time if a job were available?
- Why do you want this job?
- What are your salary expectations?
- How would you describe the pace at which you work?
- How do you handle stress and pressure?
- Are you overqualified for this job?
- Have you ever had difficulty working with a manager?
- Why do you want to work here?
- Why should we hire you?
- What do you know about this company?
- Why are you the best person for the job?
- What applicable experience do you have?
- What can you contribute to this company?
- What interests you about this job?
- What motivates you?
- What are you looking for in your next job? What is important to you?
- What will you do if you don’t get this position?
- What are your goals for the next few years? How do you plan to achieve these goals?