A ‘low-risk recruiting tool’

Informational interviews have their advantages in a recovering economy
By Sarah Dobson
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 02/14/2011

As a marketing manager at Clevest Solutions in Richmond, B.C., Aaron Cruikshank has done many informational interviews over the years through his university alumni association. He enjoys the opportunity to talk about management consulting or communications, his two areas of expertise.

“These are fuzzy fields, so people are interested in getting into them without having a firm understanding of what the day-to-day job looks like,” he says. “Arguably, that can be said about any employer.”

In many cases, these types of interviews — in which a jobseeker gathers information on a chosen field, asks about employment leads and expands her professional network — are used by students who don’t have that much experience with the world of work, so it’s a chance to better understand that world, the commitments and the culture, says Paul Smith, executive director at the Canadian Association of Career Educators and Employers.