ICF International
3.0 of 5 248 reviews
www.icfi.com Fairfax, VA 1000 to 5000 Employees

ICF International Research Assistant Interview Questions & Reviews in Washington, DC

Updated Apr 21, 2014
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2 people found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Easy Interview

Research Assistant Interview

Research Assistant
Washington, DC

I applied through an employee referral and the process took 2+ months - interviewed at ICF International in April 2013.

Interview Details – Employee referral, which a couple weeks later got me a phone interview. A week later I was asked to come down for an in person interview, which consisted of four 30-minute one-on-one interviews and a 1.5 hour lunch. Questions were largely about my experience, why I wanted to work at ICF, what my career goals are. A few behavioral "explain a time when you learned ____" were thrown in the mix. Overall, it was conversational and pleasant.

Interview Question – None. Most difficult questions were behavioral.   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – Little wiggle room on salary. Not sure how it was for others.

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1 person found this helpful

No Offer

Negative Experience

Average Interview

Research Assistant Interview

Research Assistant
Fairfax, VA

I applied online and the process took 2 months - interviewed at ICF International in November 2013.

Interview Details – I submitted my application online and was contacted by email a month or so later to set up a phone interview. The phone interview was only 15-20 minutes long and consisted of questions regarding location, interests, and long-term career goals.

Two weeks after the phone interview, I received an invitation for an in-person interview at their main office, which was scheduled to be a week later. The day began with an introductory presentation about the company. There were about ten of us, and each interviewee was put in an unoccupied office. The interview process involved three separate interviews. Two of the interviewers were very casual and nice, but one was a nightmare. He asked unexpected technical questions, and he made hurtful remarks about my inability to answer one of his questions about cost benefit analysis.

The interviews were followed by lunch with recently hired employees in similar positions. It went longer than expected. Lunch was followed by a brief tour of the building, but I had to leave early due to fear of missing my flight. My cab was taking its time getting there, and I awkwardly sat with other applicants waiting for cabs after they had completed the tour. I could have taken the tour while waiting and looked silly for leaving.

Overall, it was not a positive experience. Needless to say, I did not get an offer, and they did not bother to follow-up and tell me that.

Interview Question – I had listed a climate law course on my resume. The course focused on the Kyoto Protocol and post-Kyoto negotiations. I was asked to place climate change mitigation strategies along a curve, comparing cost and effectiveness. I was unprepared for that.   View Answer

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2 people found this helpful

No Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Research Assistant Interview

Research Assistant
Fairfax, VA

I applied online - interviewed at ICF International in August 2013.

Interview Details – After I submitted the online application for half a month, I received a telephone interview invitation and talked with the recruiter several days later and she asked for my writing sample. And a week later, I received another telephone interview with the project manager. The third step is on-site interview with five members of the project, around 2.5 hours.

Interview Question – One of the question I didn't prepare is that what is your experience with difficult customer.   Answer Question

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2 people found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Easy Interview

Research Assistant Interview

Research Assistant
Washington, DC

I applied online and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at ICF International in February 2013.

Interview Details – I applied online on the same day that they listed the job ad. 3 days later, I received a phone call from an HR rep asking for a brief phone interview with her. 2 days later, we had our 30 minute phone interview, where she mostly asked for clarification on previous positions and describing the general responsibilities of the position. 2 days later I was asked to arrange in person interviews, which were planned for the following week (6 days later).

I had 7 in-person interviews, and they went well (and surprisingly fast). Each was 30 minutes long; first I met with the same HR rep from the phone interview, then I had two interviews with project management (one of which was the hiring manager), followed by an interview with two employees on the analyst level, senior management, project lead, and then finishing with the HR rep.

With my interviews the questions involved asking about my previous experience, and asking how I would feel about performing certain tasks. There were little technical questions asked. I honestly enjoyed the interview experience, since I came into the interviews with little understanding of the projects assigned to the team.

I was told that I would hear a progress report the following week (telling me if they had made a decision, or if they were still interviewing candidates). Before that date I received a phone call from the HR rep telling me that the team decided to offer me the position.

Interview Question – If you were overwhelmed with work, how would you address it? Who would you talk to about it?   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – I listed my desired salary rate a bit higher than the rates of other RA jobs locally; they offered a bit more (but still mid-range according to Glassdoor). I was happy with the offer, but had no room to negotiate benefits/salary when I received the job offer.

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Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Easy Interview

Research Assistant Interview

Research Assistant
Fairfax, VA

I applied through college or university and the process took 2+ weeks - interviewed at ICF International in April 2008.

Interview Details – Campus interview during career fair followed by an on-site interview. ICF flew me to their HQ and had a full-day interview with two teams - 2 members each. I was offered the position a week later via phone.

Interview Question – Most questions were about my interests and work style. Very few techical/situational questions.   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – I tried to negotiate for higher salary. I was told by HR before they passed on my request that it was highly unlikely I'd see a change.

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3 people found this helpful

No Offer

Neutral Experience

Average Interview

Research Assistant Interview

Research Assistant
Rockville, MD

I applied in-person and interviewed at ICF International.

Interview Details – I was contacted by HR via phone and was asked a couple of basic questions about my skills. We then scheduled an interview a few days later.
During the interview I met with the hiring manager, who was very pleasant. She asked a few general questions about my experience, and took some time to explain the position a little bit. Then she asked some standard cookie cutter questions, "Explain a time where you overcame adversity." "Explain a time where you had to work in a group."
After that, I met with a couple of younger employees who asked similar questions about my background experience. Again, pleasant for the most part.
Next, I met with two other managers who simultaneously interviewed. Questions about my experiences were asked again, followed by more cookie cutter interview questions, "Do you prefer working in a group or working individually?" ect. These interviewers were also considerate and were very engaging.
Towards the end of these interviews, the hiring manager popped in to inform me that I was the first to be interviewed and that I should hear back from them in a couple of weeks.
I thanked them and left, sending thank you letters that day.
Two weeks later after hearing nothing, I called. The hiring manager informed me that they were still interviewing and that HR should contact me soon. That was over five weeks ago. Nobody ever contacted me.
What I did not tell them was that four days after my interview, I noticed that a LinkedIn member updated their job title as a Research Assistant on the ICF page on the same day that I had interviewed. There had only been one RA position open for the last few months. My best guess is that they hired another candidate that day on the spot. Not only did they fail to notify that the job was filled, they lied to me when I asked about it.

I understand not being selected for the position, it happens. What I don't appreciate, however, was how the company chose to handle the post interview process.

I hope that anybody interviewing for the company has a better experience than I did.

Interview Question – Most questions were standard questions found on "job interview help" websites.   Answer Question

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2 people found this helpful

No Offer

Positive Experience

Easy Interview

Research Assistant Interview

Research Assistant
Washington, DC

The process took a day - interviewed at ICF International in February 2012.

Interview Details – I submitted my resume online through a DC career website. The position required a lot of quantitative analysis so the questions revolved around my quantitative abilities. I enjoyed talking to my interviewer.

Interview Questions

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1 person found this helpful

No Offer

Positive Experience

Easy Interview

Research Assistant Interview

Research Assistant
Fairfax, VA

The process took 4 weeks - interviewed at ICF International in December 2011.

Interview Details – About three weeks after sending in an application with a recommendation from an internal employee, I was offered a phone interview. The interview was mainly informational, mostly about the company and the position I was applying for. The interviewer was very nice and gave a very detailed descriptions of ICF's work and the roles of RAs in the company. They said it would take some time to hear back about whether I would go onto the the next step, which was an in person interview.

Interview Question – When was a time that you needed to get your team on board with an idea, and how did you go about doing?   Answer Question

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1 person found this helpful

No Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Research Assistant Interview

Research Assistant
Fairfax, VA

The process took 3 weeks - interviewed at ICF International in August 2011.

Interview Details – I recently graduated from college so my first step (after simply submitting an online application; I was applying to an energy efficiency position) was contacting one or two people I knew who worked in the company in addition to a few associates that were alumni of my school in hopes of getting to know people in the company and receiving any other helpful information that could help my resume along.

One of the alumni got back to me and was eager to help along a fellow graduate. She asked for my resume and some additional information and within two weeks I had a phone interview with another associate from the company. The phone interview was fairly informal, mostly asking about a few things on y resume and behavioral questions like, "when was a time you failed at something and what did you get out of it?". The interview could have very easily ended in less than 15 minutes but I tried to keep it conversational and make sure to have additional questions to ask the interviewer after she was done with her questions. The whole interview lasted around 25-30 minutes. The next morning I received a phone call from their HR to schedule an in-person interview which would take place the following week.

The in-person interview consisted of 5 separate 30 minute interview, each with another associate/manager in the department that the position was in. It started out with a recent hire and worked its way up to a manager for the final 30 minutes. They said usually the recent hire was last to field final questions but it was kind of nice this way because each interview was kind of a warm-up for the next interview to come and by the time I got to the manager I felt very comfortable and confident, having already gone over many of the points with other interviewers.

I actually have yet to hear a final decision (It has been about a month) but that could be partly because their office has been swamped and things take awhile. They said they would notify me whether I got the job or not by the end of this week.

Interview Question – When was a time you failed? How did your react? What did you learn from the situation?   Answer Question

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1 person found this helpful

No Offer

Negative Experience

Easy Interview

Research Assistant Interview

Research Assistant
Washington, DC

I applied through college or university and the process took a day - interviewed at ICF International in February 2011.

Interview Details – I applied to this job via my university and interviewed at a conference center in Arlington with about 25 other applicants. The interview was straight-forward, 1st rounder type questions (basically a phone interview, in person). Post interview process was disorganized, however. Everyone who interviewed for the position that day received a mass email about 3 weeks later, thanking us for our time and stating that they did not yet know what their specific hiring needs were. I never heard anything else. I found the post interview process to be rather disrespectful, consistent with other reviews of the company I've read on Glass Door.

Interview Question – What is your biggest weakness.   Answer Question

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