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Server Administrative Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate in Monett, MO
Anonymous Interview Candidate in Monett, MO
Application Details

The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Jack Henry & Associates in March 2011.

Interview Details

I applied for a position at JHA that would be slightly beyond my current job scope -server admin. At the time, and to this date, I worked for a much larger provider of similar services and clients in a desktop/LAN environment, so I figured it would be a natural transition and as I was looking to move to MO, I applied.

I received a phone call to set up a phone interview for later in the week. During the phone interview, I made it perfectly clear that while I may not have the exact qualifications they were looking for, I was knowledgeable, trainable, and highly motivated to take on new roles and skill sets. The manager commented how he liked that I didn't put a bunch of techie-speak in my resume. Apparently, this was good enough for the hiring manager, as he called me back a few days later to schedule an in-person interview.

The day before the in-person, it was snowing fiercely in my location and in Monett, 4 hours away. I waited until the late afternoon, and then took it upon myself to call and reschedule the interview as there was no way to make it to Monett. I was slightly irritated that I had to call and reschedule, and that they did not call me.

The day of the second scheduled interview, I drove 4 hours to Monett and proceeded to the interview location, arriving 10 minutes early. I checked in with the receptionist, who was not the least bit friendly or welcoming, and sat down in a seat almost directly opposite her so that she could continue to imagine my non-existence. At about 10 minutes after our scheduled interview time, the manager came out and we walked to a conference room elsewhere on the campus, which is very pretty if not a little outdated and largely informal. (The employees were all wearing jeans, t-shirts, and tennis shoes, and a few of the structures themselves had a Holiday Inn-handyman-special feel to them.)

The interview was friendly, but a little ....weird. At one point, I was asked what the difference was between the process of writing a cover letter like the one I submitted and a type-and- fire email at work. I was very confused by that one. We talked in great length about items circumstantial to working at JHA, such as life in Monett, local schools, real estate values, etc., so I felt pretty good about my prospects.

Halfway through, the manager's manager came in, introduced himself, made some comments about hillbillies, and continued the interview along a more technical and structured path. After answering some more questions from both of the interviewers, he hiring manager then began to quiz me upon a list of industry abbreviations and acronyms. This was the one part I flubbed, as I couldn't really hear much of the interview due to a head cold and stuttered and stammered a few times and missed answers to things I knew because I didn't hear clearly, even after I had stated that the drive and my sinuses had affected my hearing, and could you please speak up. I have a feeling that at that point (the "quiz") the interview blew up. Then, the issue of salary came up.

Now, I knew that this was Monett, MO, and that this was a much smaller company than where I was currently working, but for a Server/Systems Admin job, even an entry level or intermediary spot, $50k should have been the minimum - this job would include on-call work, as well. I stated it seemed the appropriate range would be in $55-60K, so that's what I said. After all, coworkers doing similar work at my employer are doing $65-90K.
Not to be, however; the manager stated that $40-$45 was the range they were looking to hire in. WOW!!!

Shortly after, we exited the conference room and I was back on my way, happy to be done with perhaps the second-most dreadful interview I have ever been on, but disappointed - no, pissed - about several things.

I was irritated that I hadn't been called to reschedule the interview when the weather was horrible. I was peeved that I was offered an interview, even after making it clear that I have not done the exact server admin work this job would require over the phone, only to get there and be grilled on some technical aspects of the prospective job; if they wanted to eliminate me for lacking these qualifications, do it over the phone before I waste $85 in gas and 9 hours of my time, not to mention a sick day at my current work. I was irritated by the weirdness of some of the questions. Why waste my time with an in-person interview, only to eliminate me with weird questions you could ask over the phone?

In my opinion, you should not knowingly request an interview of someone living hours away without a very good indication you will hire them should they pass the creep test, unless you are providing reimbursement for transportation. And I am not a creep.

Interview Questions
  • What is the difference between your cover letter email you sent me and a send-it-and-forget-=it email as you would send at work?   View Answers (2)
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