The San Francisco Chronicle Interview Questions

Updated May 16, 2015
8 Interview Reviews

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  1.  

    Multimedia Specialist Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Mateo, CA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter – interviewed at The San Francisco Chronicle (San Mateo, CA) in April 2015.

    Interview

    Although I was told for several months when I followed up after submitting my CV, that the HR person had "no idea" who the hiring manager was, and couldn't help me, I got an email out of the blue from some new blood, a man who said he got me, got "it". and promised me transparency and prompt follow-up, even getting me on the phone with a long-time regional manager the same day. From there it went totally south.

    Interview Questions

    • Usual and customary questions, such as why I would want to work selling print and multi-media services when my background encompasses both, and I felt it was self-evident about my skill-set, experience and what I bring to the table.   1 Answer
  2.  

    Multimedia Specialist Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 1+ weekinterviewed at The San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco, CA).

    Interview

    Very easy. I came in a referral and was offered a job at the interview. I was informed of the expectations and was surprised that the vast majority of sales reps worked a a 7.5 hour work day. Almost no one worked late. That has changed since I was initially hired.

    Interview Questions

    • N/A They asked standard sales development questions.   1 Answer

    Negotiation

    I negotiated additional vacation. There is little wiggle room as the sales team is unionized. Offer was based upon years of experience.

  3. Helpful (1)  

    Circulation Project Manager Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 5 daysinterviewed at The San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco, CA) in August 2014.

    Interview

    I was contacted by HR and asked to come on site for an interview. We confirmed a date over the phone, and she said she would send me an agenda for the interview. After 3 days, I had to follow up with her to check on the agenda, which she said she had forgotten about, and emailed over to me. The interview was fine, 6 people individually(one session had 2 people), and at the end of the interview I was shown out by the final interviewer, no final contact with HR. I followed up with them after a week, and again after two weeks, but never heard anything back. If you've taken the time to reach out to someone for an interview, respect them enough to at least tell them they did not get the job. Leaving people hanging is shoddy HR.

    Interview Questions

    • Not anything difficult, mostly around PM experience, a lot of giving context to the role as it was a newly created position.   Answer Question
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  5.  

    Copy Editor Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2 daysinterviewed at The San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco, CA).

    Interview

    Interviews filled a full workday. I talked with HR reps, the copy desk chief, the executive editor and more. I sat in on the afternoon newsroom meeting where editors determine what will go on the front page. I applied and got no response, but then I met a higher-up at an industry event and that person moved my application forward, so networking is important. As a copy editor, I also had to pass an editing and headline-writing test. Do your homework.

    Interview Questions

    • I suppose the editing/headline test was the most difficult part, especially the portions where I needed to write headlines about a story to fit a particular space. Pay attention to detail!   Answer Question

    Negotiation

    I named a high number, the other person named one slightly lower, and we compromised in the middle. I raised my minimum salary given the cost of living in the Bay Area. Don't underestimate that cost!

  6. Helpful (1)  

    Staff Reporter & Writer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied in-person – interviewed at The San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco, CA).

    Interview

    For a reporter or assignment / desk editor job: he best way to get hired is to write directly to the Department Head (City Editor, Features / Datebook Editor, Deputy Managing Editor for Features).

    For copy-editing job, write to head of copy editors. Sorry, forgot that title.

    Avoid HR.

    Write a kick-ass cover letter, and send resume.

    If you know anyone who works there, have them put in a plug. Like everywhere, it is who you know.

    Getting an interview is more than half the work. For newsroom job on interview day, you will talk to the department head, an assignment editor, a few colleagues, then the Managing Editor and/or Executive Editor. All 1 on 1, no group interview. Most done in a single day....

    Very mellow, surprisingly. Not a grueling interrogation at all. If you've gotten to the interview stage, they want to like you. The job is almost yours -- unless you kick it away.

    I think they called one reference. No written tests (except, I'm sure, for copy editors) -- except maybe a drug test? Can't remember.

    BTW, it's a fast process. It's a Yes or No within days!

    Interview Questions

    • Shockingly, for a bunch of journalists, they ask very few good or hard-ball questions. It's mostly chatter about your experience. Be enthusiastic. Be friendly. Don't try to impress -- comes off arrogant. (Most in newsroom did NOT come from Ivy League or big city newspapers; there's a real inferiority complex // defensiveness there!) Like everywhere else, people hire less on resumes and more on who they like.   Answer Question

    Negotiation

    Get it ALL up front!!!!!!! You will never see a raise (other than union raise, which is paltry, at best)!

    There's always a teeny bit of play on salary. Maybe $50-$100 from their initial offer. Salaries are really awful., especially for a major newspaper in such an expensive city. Of course, ideal if you have another offer or at least another interview with another newspaper ....

    **Call up the Newspaper Guild BEFORE your interview, and find out what the salary ranges are for the job you're applying for! NOT just the Guild minimum, but what people are actually making!

    **Try to get at least one extra week vacation -- it's easy for them to give up.

  7.  

    Account Executive Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied in-person. The process took a weekinterviewed at The San Francisco Chronicle.

    Interview

    Had 1 phone screening, and they decided to bring me in for interviews the following week. There were 3 rounds of interviews. The most important employer was at the end of the interview.

    I liked that all 3 employers had different personalities, which shed some light on their work environment.

    Interview Questions

    • If I hire you for this role tomorrow how would you start off your day? What would you do, or work on first, and how would you plan on getting things done?   Answer Question
    • If you were to start your own business what would it be and how would you get it going?   Answer Question

    Negotiation

    They usually send out a job offer almost immediately. Depending which team you work with, there may be some room for negotiation, but if that, very little.

  8.  

    Sales Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral – interviewed at The San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco, CA) in October 2011.

    Interview

    Liked hiring manager felt like it would be a good fit. Met and interviewed with four other people. Thought they were all sharp and would work well with them. Seemed like a very strong organization and would be a great career move

    Interview Questions

    • What will you bring to the company? Why are you leaving your current position? What type of work ethic do you have?   1 Answer

    Negotiation

    Gave me more than I was expecting so it went well

  9.  

    Reporter Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied in-person. The process took 1 dayinterviewed at The San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco, CA) in May 2009.

    Interview

    Pretty dismal. First question my interviewer asked was: What is your current salary? I provided an answer, and he interviewer immediately said they couldn't pay me that much.

    Interview Questions

    • How would you cover the Internet   1 Answer
    • How much do you earn?   1 Answer

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