Smithsonian
4.0 of 5 61 reviews
www.si.edu Washington, DC 5000+ Employees

Smithsonian Interview Questions & Reviews

Updated Mar 13, 2014
All Interviews Received Offers

Getting the Interview 

45%
9%
6%

Interview Experience 

80%
20%
0%

Interview Difficulty 

17 candidate interviews
Relevance Date Difficulty
in

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Easy Interview

Intern Interview

Intern
Washington, DC

I applied online and interviewed at Smithsonian.

Interview Details – This was fairly simple. So long as you had the appropriate qualifications and a work ethic it seemed that they could accept you. The questions were very much along the lines of where you want to go in life. The interview was over the phone and was not stressful at all. As for after the acceptance there was a simple background check and everything else was fairly straight forward.

Interview Question – I wouldn't say that there was anything truly unexpected.   Answer Question

Was this interview helpful?  
Yes | No
Flag Interview  |  Add Employer Response

No Offer

Positive Experience

Difficult Interview

Editorial Assistant Interview

Editorial Assistant
Washington, DC

I applied online and the process took 5+ weeks - interviewed at Smithsonian in February 2014.

Interview Details – Sent application via email in late January, interview happened in early February; didn't find out about company decision until early March.

Was told repeatedly that the position was very competitive, many, many applicants received.

Emailed first for a very brief phone interview basically confirming my interest and asking for an in-person interview. Came in for the in-person interview and spoke with two editors. Questions were more casual, personal, not the usual job interview questions. Shown around the office, asked about my background, etc.

I received a personal phone call when I wasn't selected for the position; the interviewer actually apologized and expressed her regret that she couldn't hire me, which I appreciated, even if I was still deeply disappointed. Did not, however, receive feedback as to WHY I wasn't hired.

Interview Question – "If you weren't hired here, what job would you be working?"   View Answer

Was this interview helpful?  
Yes | No
Flag Interview  |  Add Employer Response

No Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Major Gifts Officer Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate

I applied online and the process took 2+ weeks - interviewed at Smithsonian in August 2013.

Interview Details – I received a very timely response requesting to meet for an interview. The support, management, and executive staff were all extremely friendly and personable. I met with the hiring director and executive director at once - this was very efficient for them and for me. During our interview, I really felt they'd taken the time out to look at my experience and skill set individually to consider how it would complement the other members of the team and their new goals. The interview felt very much like a team strategy meeting and less like a judge's panel; I found this to be a great way of getting a good send of how we could all work together. This was one of the better interviews I've had - no rapid-fire, cookie-cutter questions were asked in order to check them off a template.

Interview Question – What do you think will be the most difficult challenge to taking on this higher role - the aspect of the job which you have the least amount of experience in and the highest learning curve to achieve the desired results?   Answer Question

Was this interview helpful?  
Yes | No
Flag Interview  |  Add Employer Response

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Easy Interview

Intern Interview

Anonymous Employee

I applied through college or university and the process took 3+ months - interviewed at Smithsonian in March 2009.

Interview Details – interviewed by supervisor.

Was this interview helpful?  
Yes | No
Flag Interview  |  Add Employer Response

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Sergeant Interview

Sergeant
New York, NY

I applied online and the process took a day - interviewed at Smithsonian.

Interview Details – I applied online through USAjobs. I received notice that I got the interview. I went in front of a panel of interviewers whom each asked different questions. The interview lasted 45 minutes to an hour. The panel consisted of one security manager, one higher level supervisor, and the building manager.

Was this interview helpful?  
Yes | No
Flag Interview  |  Add Employer Response

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Easy Interview

Retail Associate Interview

Anonymous Employee
Washington, DC

I applied in-person and the process took 3 weeks - interviewed at Smithsonian in February 2011.

Interview Details – I handed in my resume to one of the gift stores. The store manager contacted me for an interview for which I was accepted. They proceeded to run a background check on me. I went to get fingerprinted and get a badge. I attended an orientation class and started work.

Interview Question – Generic interview questions. You should give detail about previous work experience and why you are qualified for the position. Some questions about what you do in this or that situation if it happened.   Answer Question

Was this interview helpful?  
Yes | No
Flag Interview  |  Add Employer Response

Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Program Coordinator Interview

Program Coordinator

Interviewed at Smithsonian

Interview Details – First round selection, the resume and coverletter;
then, if you pass, you would obtain the interview opportunity;
and the interview would be through skype or telephone.
Only one interview is needed.

Interview Question – several questions about your weakness and strength.   Answer Question

Was this interview helpful?  
Yes | No
Flag Interview  |  Add Employer Response

Declined Offer

Neutral Experience

E-Marketing Intern Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate

Interviewed at Smithsonian

Interview Details – The interview was brief as I was on the train when I received the call. For the internship, no previous experience was required, just a basic understanding of what marketing entails and enthusiasm and passion for hard work is needed. Mastery of english and problem solving skills is a bonus.

Was this interview helpful?  
Yes | No
Flag Interview  |  Add Employer Response

No Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

New Media Specialist Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate
Washington, DC

I applied online and the process took 3 weeks - interviewed at Smithsonian in January 2012.

Interview Details – Lesson learned: Be assertive.

Initially, I received an email stating that I did not quality for the position, but since I was close to finishing college, and getting rejected left and right at the time, I really wanted to know why I did not qualify. Someone from the Center called me a few days later, and told me that they realized that they would need more than one candidate for the position, and that if I was still interested, I should come in for an interview. And I did! The interview was conducted by 4 people, whom were all very friendly, and easy to talk to. I think the biggest thing is to be confident, even if you may not have the best answer, be as confident as you can be because it can make up for other things.

They asked about all my work experience, had written all over a copy of my resume ready to be asked, they asked about my different work situations, how I handled school and work, etc.

In the end, no offer, but they did say that they loved talking to me and that I was an excellent candidate.

Interview Question – What is your greatest weakness? This was expected, but I hate answering this question. And I don't think I gave the best reply.   Answer Question

Was this interview helpful?  
Yes | No
Flag Interview  |  Add Employer Response

No Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Development Intern Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate

I applied online and the process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at Smithsonian.

Interview Details – I had a phone interview with the Development office, and there are two people in charge of the office, a male and female. They were both very friendly and professional. The female lady has an interest in Renaissance art. During the interview, they were focused on asking about the background and interest in this position. Very professional and knowledgeable about nonprofit fundraising.

Interview Question – What would you like to bring to this position?   Answer Question

Was this interview helpful?  
Yes | No
Flag Interview  |  Add Employer Response
RSS Feed Embed

Worked for Smithsonian? Contribute to the Community!

The difficulty rating is the average interview difficulty rating across all interview candidates.

The interview experience is the percentage of all interview candidates that said their interview experience was positive, neutral, or negative.

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.

Glassdoor is your free inside look at Smithsonian interview questions and advice. All 17 interview reviews posted anonymously by Smithsonian employees and interview candidates.