/ Asked by Larsa
Are big companies interested in giving formal informational interviews to students that are looking to learn more about the company and how the culture of the company is? If so, how helpful is it for a student to request informational interviews to companies?
Answered by Rodd, Hiring Expert at Gap Inc., on Thursday, September 12, 2013
Yes, absolutely! We think it is great as students are exploring their interests and companies, they reach out to see if they can have an informational/explore interview. This helps support and validate is this is the right company for them and vice versa for the company to see if there might be an opportunity for the candidate to explore..
Answered by Kellie, Hiring Expert at Emerson, on Thursday, September 12, 2013
Yes, most companies are willing to give informational interviews to potential job seekers. I think it is a great tool to learn a lot about the company culture, the company industry, and have an opportunity to make connections with various employees at the company.
In preparation for an informational interview you should do some standard company research and draft specific questions you want answered (i.e. day-to-day work schedule, what are the company values, etc.). Being prepared will allow you to dig deeper into the company and get the most out of your time with the company.  
Answered by Jennifer, Hiring Expert at Verizon, on Friday, September 13, 2013
Yes, most companies are willing to give informational interviews or exploratory conversations about the company. I would recommend to leverage your school’s resources to help you in looking into this- you can work with your career services to get in touch with company representatives who are looking to hire at your school. I would also recommend attending company presentations that may be held on campus and talking with the presenters afterwards about your interests and the organization.
Answered by Steve, Hiring Expert at Caterpillar Inc., on Friday, September 13, 2013
Yes, large corporations are very open to formal informational interviews, however, it is key that you identify the appropriate person with whom to have that interview.  I suggest a person who is a leader in or who holds a position similar to your targeted position in the function in which you have ingterest.  This is where professional networking services, such as LinkedIn, can be very helpful.  If you use LinkedIn to locate an individual who works in your desired function at that company, you can reach out to that individual and they can give you a clear picture of how that function operates at that company.   
Answered by Kelly, Hiring Expert at Merck & Co., Inc., on Friday, November 1, 2013
Great question! Many companies do give informational interviews. This could be done in a number of ways. You may have a chance to meet with a recruiter or hiring manager at an event, like an information session, held on your campus. These sessions typically give a company overview and are followed by interview sessions. If you are not signed up for a formal interview, you can touch base with the company representatives for a one off “mock interview”. You can meet with company representatives during a Career Fair and request an informational interview. Your Career Service Department has contacts within companies and they should be able to link you with a company rep where you can then request an informational interview. It’s great that you are looking into this type of interview! Interviews can be stressful. The more you practice, the smoother the interview will go.
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