US Department of State

  www.state.gov
Work in HR? Unlock Free Profile

US Department of State Interview Questions & Reviews

Updated Jun 30, 2014
All Interviews Received Offers

Getting an Interview  

55%
34%
4%

Interview Experience  

79%
13%
7%

Interview Difficulty  

Average Difficulty
68 candidate interviews
Relevance Date Difficulty
in
1 person found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Intern Interview

Intern
Washington, DC

I applied online and the process took 3 months - interviewed at US Department of State.

Interview Details – Very tedious online application - you need to submit your resume on top of filling in your resume information into their own specific resume builder. You will also submit a statement of purpose, and this is very important. Moreover, you need to give detailed info for clearance.

Interview Question – Phone interview Qs: tell us a time you had to deal with a difficult person. Please introduce yourself in the foreign language you are studying.   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – Through email - very understanding - but they want full time interns. The minimum is 10 weeks and maximum is 14 weeks. Usually 8:30am to 5pm. Need strong writing and analytical skills.


No Offer

Negative Experience

Difficult Interview

Program Manager Interview

Program Manager
Washington, DC

I applied online - interviewed at US Department of State in May 2009.

Interview Details – Somewhat cumbersome given the amount of documentation and training required.

Interview Question – What is your most unsuccessful venture.   View Answer


1 person found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Program Assistant Interview

Program Assistant
New York, NY

I applied through an employee referral and the process took 12 months - interviewed at US Department of State in May 2010.

Interview Details – Pretty standard interview process, they asked about my background from my resume (they'd read it, which is a plus compared to a lot of other places). The real hang-up was that after I'd gotten the offer my paperwork got lost in HR and it was a year before they tracked it down (nobody seemed to know who to call, and I was stuck on the outside).

Interview Question – Are you familiar with [XXX] software?   View Answer


2 people found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Foreign Service Officer Interview

Foreign Service Officer
Washington, DC

I applied online and the process took 12 months - interviewed at US Department of State in April 2011.

Interview Details – Online application followed by sitting for the Foreign Service Test. The test is a comprehensive test that tests everything from US Political and Government history to Logic, to Interpersonal Skills. Following the test there are a series of interviews. You have a group interview where you solve problems as if you were in the embassy as well as a personal interview.

Interview Question – They were all typical questions that you find in an interview.   Answer Question


Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Difficult Interview

Intern Interview

Intern
Washington, DC

The process took a day - interviewed at US Department of State in August 2011.

Interview Details – The interviewer called me and we spoke, in detail, about the position and my career goals. He then invited me to come in for an interview with a panel of three people (one Foreign Affairs Officer, one foreign service office and one Public Affairs officer). The interview lasted about an hour and consisted of a range of questions from my background, to work experience to Secretary Clinton's diplomacy style. Also, make sure to ask for their business cards at the end of your interview.

Interview Questions

Negotiation Details – No negotiation was possible.


2 people found this helpful

No Offer

Neutral Experience

Difficult Interview

Foreign Service Officer Interview

Foreign Service Officer
Washington, DC

I applied online and the process took 6 months - interviewed at US Department of State in October 2011.

Interview Details – First took the computer based "written" test, which was three sections of multiple choice and a writing section. Second, submitted 6 personal narrative questions that pertained to leadership, initiative, and other desirable qualities. Final round is a day-long interview consisting of an interview, memo-writing, and a group session where you, along with a handful of other applicants, discuss the merits of a particular project while the interviewers monitor you.

Interview Question – Why do you want to join the Foreign Service?   Answer Question


2 people found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Very Easy Interview

Financial Management Officer Interview

Financial Management Officer
Washington, DC

I applied online and the process took a day - interviewed at US Department of State in March 2009.

Interview Details – 1) Submit a very involved application on line
2) Called in for oral interview with 2 individuals who are HR people and therefore, know nothing about what the job actually entails. They read from a script.
3) If you pass, you then go through a year long medical and security background check
4) If you pass those, you are put in a roster.
5) If there is an opening and if there is no one ahead of you in the roster, you get a call. The rankings in the roster is dependent on how well you did in the oral interview. Once you're on the roster, the call can take up to 2 years, but is typically between a year to two.
6) I believe you are dropped from the roster if you're not called after 3 years. After all the tax payer's expense in running your security background check and medical exam, it is a tremendous waste.

Interview Question – How would you save money if the Ambassador said the Embassy needs to cut 10% off the budget?   View Answer

Negotiation Details – None. There is a very fixed schedule (table) based on your work experience and education and there is no room for negotiation.


1 person found this helpful

No Offer

Neutral Experience

Average Interview

Entry Level Planner Interview

Entry Level Planner
Washington, DC

I applied online and the process took 3 weeks - interviewed at US Department of State in June 2011.

Interview Details – Complex hiring process and testing

Interview Question – Why do you want to work here?   Answer Question


1 person found this helpful

No Offer

Positive Experience

Difficult Interview

US Foreign Service Officer Interview

US Foreign Service Officer
Washington, DC

The process took 4 months - interviewed at US Department of State in March 2010.

Interview Details – 9-10 month process, but once you schedule your oral assessment test, it is approximately a 3-4 month process. Group exercise stresses cooperation and being able to follow directions and complete the task on time. Case management is relatively difficult, exercise stresses time management and ability to wade through lots of irrelevant material and boil the facts down. Individual interview fairly standard, probably the easiest part.

Interview Question – Why do you want to be a foreign service officer   View Answer


2 people found this helpful

No Offer

Positive Experience

Difficult Interview

Foreign Service Officer Interview

Foreign Service Officer
Washington, DC

The process took a day - interviewed at US Department of State in May 2010.

Interview Details – First 1/3 of the day was a group exercise (5 people) where you demonstrated your negotiation, communication, and interpersonal skills; Second 1/3 of the day was a 2 on 1 interview; Last 1/3 of the day was a 90 min. memo-writing exercise.

Interview Question – What is your biggest weakness?   Answer Question

See What US Department of State Employees Are Saying

 Former IT Manager in Washington, DC

Pros: “Dedicated professionals, rewarding assignments (both the job and location), benefits” Full Review

Worked for US Department of State? 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.