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Should you go to an interview if you are ill?

Interviews when ill

Attending an interview if you’re ill or inflicted could effect your chances of getting the job or be a risk to your safety. We explore what may or may not be an acceptable ailment for an interview.

Being invited to an interview is an exciting opportunity and the next step in securing the job you want. But as interview day rolls around you may have woken up feeling worse for wear. As you drag yourself out of your bed you ask yourself the question: should I go to my interview if I am poorly?

It is perfectly human to get sick or hurt once in a while. As tiring as it may be, generally we can carry on as normal. Turning up to an interview ill however is not in the realms of a normal day and you need to consider just how ill you are and whether it is wise to still go.

Here are the factors you need to consider before turning up to your interview poorly.

Are you contagious?

The first thing you and the potential employer should consider is, will your attendance to the interview ill have an effect on other people? Could you potentially pass your ailment on to others? If your ailment is contagious you need to consider the severity of the contagion and illness itself.

Here is a list of some common contagious illnesses and our recommendation as to whether you should or should not attend the interview:

Common cold
If you are mildly suffering with the common cold but still able to get on with your day to day life (work, children, hobbies) there should be no reason you can’t go to your interview with a cold. If, however you have a full on, in bed struggling to move/speak/breath through the gunk cold/flu it’s best you give your Recruitment Consultant a ring to reschedule.

Sickness and Diarrhoea
Under no circumstances should you go to an interview with sickness and diarrhoea. This is an extremely contagious ailment, and no one will appreciate you giving it to them. If you have had a bout of this within the last 24-48 hours or still suffering, you need to reschedule for a minimum of 48 hours after your last episode.

Chicken pox
Most people caught chicken pox as a child, however there are still a number of adult cases of chicken pox or shingles. If you think you have either of these it is best to reschedule your interview as you would not want to put vulnerable people at risk. Chicken pox is usually not an overnight fix so it may be worth seeing if the interview can be held digitally – see our article Are digital interviews the way forward? for more information about this type of interview technique.

Is it a debilitating illness?

The next thing to consider is, are you safely able to get to the interview? Are you allowed to drive with your illness – is it safe to do so? Are you able to hold a conversation?

Hayfever effects people in different ways and is often mistaken for the common cold. Similar to a cold, if you are able to get on with day to day life, pop an antihistamine and keep your appointment. If your eyes are glued shut and your nose is like a tap best sit this one out and wait for the pollen count to go down.

General toothache that can be relieved with mild painkillers would not be a reason to not attend the interview. Severe pain, abscesses etc however would be good reason to postpone, especially if an emergency dentist is required.

Similar to toothache, if you have a headache that can be managed by drinking more water or taking mild painkillers then you should be well enough to attend the interview. If you can’t bear bright lights, are vomiting or require strong drowsy inducing medication you should let your Recruitment Consultant know that you need to cancel for another day.

Food poisoning
Food poisoning can be very debilitating and require you to be close to a bathroom or bucket at all times. Best to cancel the interview and reschedule for a couple of days’ time when it is out of your system.

Broken bone
If you’re all patched up and safely able to get to your interview we suggest you keep the date in the diary. Pop your Recruitment Consultant a message or call to let them know your circumstances so the employer can make the necessary arrangements for you to ensure your safety.

Let Hunter Dunning do the hard work of finding a job for you so you can concentrate on staying well and practicing your interview techniques and career wins. As an exclusive candidate, we can offer professional advice as experts in our field, time and cost saving solutions and a quality service. See more about us here.

To search our current jobs visit the Hunter Dunning jobs section and use our search function to find that perfect job in Interior Design, or maybe a job in Architecture. We also have a number of jobs in property.

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