Admissions Consulting
Telephone 1800-212-2670
Career Services
Telephone 310-309-1998

Frequently Asked Questions

How many pages should a resume be?

We suggest that your resume be no longer than 2 pages and preferably 1 page. Research indicates that the typical hiring manager spends about 60 seconds reading a resume before deciding whether or not to interview an applicant. Longer resumes are more difficult to skim and are generally less successful.

Do I need to wear a suit for an interview coaching session?

Please be comfortable! Our dress code for career coaches is business casual but we encourage our clients to dress in the manner they prefer. If you have questions about whether your outfit is acceptable for a job interview, feel free to wear it and we will tell you. Please consult your career coach for guidance on appropriate attire for job interviews.

How long does it take to write a resume?

We complete most resumes within 5 days from the time you send us your completed questionnaire. If you request rush service (extra charge), we can usually deliver a complete resume in 48 hours. For our rush service, please call ahead to confirm availability and timeframe.It’s important to realize that the time spent writing a resume and cover letter is directly related to the quality of the result. An additional day spent waiting for a well-written Interview SOS resume will help you get more callbacks, more job offers, and a higher salary. It typically takes 4 hours to write a resume and 1 hour to write a cover letter. In addition, we require an independent review of the resume by a second career coach for quality control purposes.

Should I mention to the hiring manager or HR professional that I hired an interview coach, resume writer, or career counselor?

Interview coaching, resume writing, and career counseling are your secret weapon – you don’t want to mention in your interview (or to anyone at the company) that you hired a professional. If they specifically ask you, you can say you got help, but don’t go into too much detail. You want people to think that normally you’re just a very articulate and well-prepared person.

What is your location?

We currently have three offices:

Westwood Office (Head Office)
10866 Wilshire Blvd
4th Floor
Los Angeles, California 90024
Please call us at 1-310-309-1998 when you arrive in the lobby. Our secretary will come down and get you.

West Los Angeles Office
1800 Century Park East
Suite 600A
Los Angeles, CA 90067
*Please call us at 1-310-309-1998 when you arrive in the lobby. Our secretary will come down and get you.

Billing Office
959 Gayley Ave
Office 6
Los Angeles, CA 90024
We often visit Cal State-Northridge, Pasadena City College, UCLA, and the University of Southern California to see clients. Also, we can talk with you over the Skype, phone, or Google Video Chat regardless of where you live.

What are the directions to your office?

That depends on where you are coming from. See directions below.

From the 405 North/South

Take the Wilshire Blvd Exit (East). Continue on Wilshire 3 lights past Veteran Blvd, Gayley Ave and Westwood Blvd. The building is located on the southeast corner of Wilshire Blvd and Glendon Ave on your right.

From the 10 East/West

Take the 405 North. Take the Wilshire Blvd Exit (East). Continue on Wilshire 3 lights past Veteran Blvd, Gayley Ave and Westwood Blvd. The building is located on the southeast corner of Wilshire Blvd and Glendon Ave on your right.

Coming from the Westside

Head East on Santa Monica Blvd, and take a left on Westwood Blvd (North). Take a Right on Wilshire Blvd (West). The building is located on the southeast corner of Wilshire Blvd and Glendon Ave on your right.

Coming from Downtown Los Angeles (East)

Take the 10 West to the 405 North. Take the Wilshire Blvd Exit (East). Continue on Wilshire 3 lights past Veteran Blvd, Gayley Ave and Westwood Blvd. The building is located on the southeast corner of Wilshire Blvd and Glendon Ave on your right.

Coming from the Valley (North)

Take the 405 South to the Wilshire Blvd Exit (East). Continue on Wilshire 3 lights past Veteran Blvd, Gayley Ave and Westwood Blvd. The building is located on the southeast corner of Wilshire Blvd and Glendon Ave on your right.

Coming from South Los Angeles

Take the 405 North to the Wilshire Blvd Exit (East). Continue on Wilshire 3 lights past Veteran Blvd, Gayley Ave and Westwood Blvd. The building is located on the southeast corner of Wilshire Blvd and Glendon Ave on your right.

Where can I find parking?

Metered street parking is available on Westwood Blvd, Glendon Ave and the surrounding neighborhood. Paid parking is available at the Gayley Center Public Parking (1154 Gayley Ave), UCLA Lot 32 (Corner of Kinross and Gayley), and Valet Parking Service Public Parking (1011 Hilgard Ave). Free street parking is sometimes available on Wilshire Blvd a few blocks east of Glendon Blvd.

Do I really need a cover letter?

Studies have shown that about 35% of companies will discard a resume that does not include a cover letter and 85% of companies prefer resumes with cover letters. Your cover letter is important for the success of your job search and we strongly suggest you have one.

Why is interview coaching so important? Is it really worth spending money to get an interview coaching session?

The interview is the most important part of the job application process. It’s where the hiring manager makes the final decision about who to hire and who to ignore. Unfortunately, many candidates come to the interview not knowing how to present themselves or how the hiring manager will perceive their answers to common interview questions. Every hiring manager has seen highly qualified candidates come to job interviews:

  • Inappropriately dressed
  • Unprepared
  • Giving answers to common job interview questions that left a very negative impression
  • No knowing what aspects of their background to emphasize during the interview

A interview coaching session will help you avoid these problems and build an effective interviewing strategy that shows the hiring manager you have the skills, personality, and background to do the job effectively. A single interviewing coaching session can make the difference in your application process and is well worth the price. Paying for a job interview coach may be the best decision you ever made. Interview coaching can make a huge difference for graduate school applicants as well.

Can you really help me prepare for a interview over the phone or video chat?

Absolutely, we have helped hundreds of clients over the phone and Skype. A phone connection is more than enough for your job interview coach to hear your answers to interview questions, see the way you present yourself in an interview and provide real time feedback. Using Skype or video chat is a small advantage over phone because your job interview coach can see your facial expressions. Regardless, both the phone and video chat are great ways to communicate regarding interviews. Even for Interview SOS’s Los Angeles-based clients, we suggest communicating over Skype to save communing time for the client. (Of course, we still meet many clients at our Los Angeles offices as well.) Prior to scheduling an interview, please make sure you have either:

  • A reliable telephone or
  • A computer with video chat capabilities (Skype or Google Video Chat) and a reliable high-speed internet connection

As long as you have one of the above two, you should be able to interact with your career coach successfully and get the practical feedback required for a successful job interview coaching session.

Woman has interview coaching session by video chat at home.

You can have a job interview coaching session in the comfort of your own home.

What should I expect from a free consultation?

One of career coaches will contact you by phone or by Skype to ask you about your specific circumstances and the job or graduate school you are applying for. We will suggest a plan for your job interview preparation, often referencing our The Defin­i­tive Guide to Ace Your Inter­view and Get the Job. This usually takes 10 minutes or less. If appropriate, our career coach will a schedule an interview coaching session with you at a mutually agreed upon time.

Interview SOS serves job applicants in what industries?

Interview SOS coaches have helped applicants apply for positions in many industries, including:

  • Accounting and Finance
  • Marketing, Sales and Communications
  • Engineering, Computers and Information Technology
  • Operations Management
  • Human Resources
  • Administration (Secretarial)
  • Nonprofit Management

We have also helped applicants interviewing for business and medical school but that requires additional preparation. Please see our Services Section to learn more.

I get REALLY nervous about job interviews. How do I overcome my anxiety?

The best way to get over your anxiety is being prepared. Spend as much time as you can to get ready for the interview both in researching the company and preparing answers to common interview questions. We can help you overcome your anxiety. If you find that you are still nervous about job interview, than we suggest rehearsing under less than ideal circumstances. Our suggestions are as follows:

Loud Music Strategy

Play some music you don’t like loud enough that it interferes with your thoughts but doesn’t wake the neighbors. Then rehearse your answers to common job interview questions. Don’t try to talk over the music just deal with it. Practicing for your interview under less than ideal circumstances will help you do better.

Insulting Friend Strategy

Ask your friends to help you rehearse for you job interview. Tell them they can say anything mean or insulting they want to say to you (within reason), while they ask you common job interview questions. You cannot respond to their insults, only respond to the job interview question they are asking you. The conversation should go something like this:

Friend: “Why are you interested in working for company x? By the way, I think your car is really ugly.” You: “I really admire company x for reason a, reason b and reason c. [do not respond to car comment]” Friend: “Your room is always such a mess. You are such a slob. What is your greatest weakness?” You: “My greatest weakness is my math skills. I overcame this weakness by studying extra hard for my math final exams. [Do not respond to slob comment.]”

Both of these strategies are very childish, which is why they are so effective at getting rid of anxiety. The real job interview will never be as bad as the artificial situation you created when you were practicing for it.

Can you really help me? What types of clients has interview SOS helped in the past?

Interview SOS career coaches have helped applicants with many different backgrounds get jobs. Past clients have included:

  • Experienced professionals seeking new employment opportunities in their field
  • Career changers entering a new field in midlife
  • Recent high school and college graduates seeking a first job
  • Former retirees and housewives reentering the job market
  • Unemployed workers trying to improve their chances of getting a job

We also have some experience helping candidates with special situations such as:

  • Shyness
  • Anxiety
  • Speech Disorders
  • English as a Second Language

How do I prepare for a job interview coaching session?

We strongly suggest that the applicant send us their resume, cover letter (if relevant) and a copy of the job description prior to the interview coaching sessions so the coach can review these documents and suggest an appropriate interviewing strategy.It’s optional, but we suggest that the applicant come to the coaching session prepared to answer the following common interview questions:

  • Tell me about yourself? [Hint: Give a 2-3 minute personal sales pitch]
  • Why are you leaving your current or previous job?
  • What is your greatest strength? What are your strengths?
  • What is your greatest weakness? What are your weaknesses?
  • Why are you interested in this position or company?
  • Tell me about your greatest achievement.

Please consult our Interview SOS Practical Guide to Job Interview Preparation for additional hints on how to answer these questions successfully. The job applicant can also bring a list of questions and concerns about the interview process for his or her coach to answer.

Our Career Coaches really add value in providing feedback on your answers to common job interview questions

Can you guarantee I’ll get the job?

No one can guarantee you will get a job or get into graduate school, even after a successful interview. There are always factors beyond your control in the application process such as nepotism or the quality of the other applicants. We provide an educational service to help our clients succeed in the interview process. We strive to give the best possible advice and preparation. The interviewing skills you develop as part of your coaching session are complete transferable. The time you spend preparing for one interview will help you prepare for the next.

What happens if the company does not contact me after an interview?

When it comes to the job application process, no news is (usually) bad news. Not all companies bother to send letters to unsuccessful job applicants. If you don’t hear back from your contact in Human resources or the hiring manager two weeks after a job interview, we suggest you write to your contacts in the company expressing your continued interest in the position. Companies are notoriously indecisive about giving out offers for some positions and the candidate who continues to (politely) express interest in the position may receive an offer at a later date or be called back to interview for another similar position if one opens up. If you have not heard back from the company two weeks after the interview, sending the following letter (or some variant of it) is appropriate:

Dear [Hiring Manager/HR Contact name], I had not heard back from you and I wanted to express my continued interest in [position xx]. I was very impressed by your [business, nonprofit, etc.]. Let me know if there is anything I can do to move forward with my candidacy. Sincerely, [you]

Until you receive a concrete job offer, we suggest that you assume you did not receive the job and continue your application process at other companies.

What is your privacy policy?

At Interview SOS, we are concerned career coaches who do our best to protect the privacy and confidentiality of our clients. Our privacy policy is enclosed. We will not sell your name and information to any third party. Privacy Policy

What happens if I am informed that I did not receive a job offer?

It is important for candidates to recognize that “no” usually means “not now.” Many Interview SOS clients have been called back at a later date to interview again for positions similar to what they interviewed for in the past as additional opportunities opened up in those companies. You should accept the rejection with grace and express continued interest in the position. Accepting rejection with grace is a sign of maturity that is highly respected by many companies, employers, and educational institutions.After receiving news that you did not receive an offer, sending the following letter (or some variant of it) is appropriate:

Dear [Hiring Manager/HR Contact name], I am sorry to hear that I did not receive an offer for [position xx]. Thank you for taking the time to consider me for the position. I was very impressed by your [business, nonprofit, etc.] and I would like to express my continued interest in the position. If this position or a similar one opens up at a later date, I hope you will consider my candidacy. Sincerely [you]

You should continue your job search but be ready to respond to a job inquiry if you are called back to interview for another position.

Why do you require prepayment for coaching services?

Our job interview coaches are focused on providing practical interview advice and helping you get the job. Therefore, all billing issues should be handled before the coaching session in order to avoid wasting valuable time. Billing is handled by our third party payment processor WePay or by Paypal.

What happened to Cheryl? I miss her!

Cheryl is currently on maternity leave. We don’t want to take her away from her husband and new daughter. Vijay Ingam, CEO and Founder of Interview SOS, is filling in for her clients until she returns. Cheryl still does proofreading and editing for Interview SOS resumes and cover letters and has promised to return soon.

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