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Southwest Interview Gouge

Old 10-24-2022, 08:38 PM
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Southwest Interview Gouge
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Old 10-28-2022, 06:07 AM
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I went through the process throughout August and into September so my experience is going to be different than that for people going through it in October. Starting October they are going away with the virtual and everything will be combined into an in person interview. Panel interview, Situational Based Question (SBQ) and logbook review

I received an email with a link to book in for a virtual interview start of August. 3 weeks later I did a virtual interview with an FO and a HR rep. They will send you some paperwork to fill in and upload to pilot credentials a few weeks before. Was very low key, started off with small talk, asked about my background and family life. Show your personality, give engaging responses, ask about them. Then we got into the actual interview. Questions included: walk me through your resume, any check-ride failures, I have one check-ride failure from 10 years ago so they asked me to explain it (be honest, explain what you learnt from it), they then asked some follow ups in regard to my failure. Other q’s: explain a time CRM broke down in the flight deck, a time I did something I wouldn’t do again, a time I went the extra mile for a customer, and the two big questions were Why SW and why now. So, make sure to have a good answer for those. They then open it up to you to ask questions.

They make it fun, but don’t get too relaxed as some of the questions require some serious answers and they will push if they aren’t satisfied.

In total it was about 50 minutes.

The next day I received an invite to schedule an in person. The only dates available were about a month out in mid September. You will choose either an AM (starting at 0800) or PM (starting at 1200) slot. I believe every second week they are conducting in person, I don’t know if that’s going to change given they are no longer doing the virtual.

SW will send you a list of documents they want you to bring and documents to email prior to the interview. Make sure to read the information sheet and follow the directions to a T. Show them you can follow basic instructions.

I think the virtual/panel is the big one so, if you get through that then the in person is more of a formality, just don’t give them a reason to say NO.

About a week prior they sent a link to book your flights, if need be. You’re on the hook for a hotel room though.

I booked a flight arriving the night before and leaving a few hours after my morning interview.

When you arrive at HQ, you will check in and get a name tag. They also have a luggage storage room. You then loiter in the lobby chatting with the other participants. In total we had about 25 in my interview group mainly from the regionals and 135 operators. There were a few military and 2 or 3 from other majors.

At 0800 on the dot, the head of the people department came and chatted to us explaining the process and answering a list of FAQs. The rest of the process was run exclusively by line pilots.

The first hour was a tour of the WINGS/LEAD building followed by a brief presentation where they are selling you on SW. Ask questions if you have any.

Next we were sent back to the lobby to wait for our turn in the hot seat. I was one of the first to get called, others had the unfortunate plight of waiting up to 1:30 or so.

First was SBQ with 2 pilots, which, from what I’ve read, seems to be the exact same thing as the LOI minus the role playing. It’s more conversational. They want to hear you talk through it, so make sure to explain yourself. They will also introduce variables as you go along and expect you to deal with them. There seems to be a big emphasis on threat and error management. At the end they ask you how you think you did and what you feel you could’ve done better/differently. They do limit the SBQ to 15 minutes with about 10 of that being the actual exercise and believe me it goes fast. I walked out of it thinking I should've done things differently and that I wished I had communicated that at the end. But, the time goes so fast, so just slow down the best you can and do your best.

Next I switched rooms with another interviewee and did the logbook review with 2 different pilots. This was very laid back and very conversational. They start off by giving your logbooks back and then they will verify your licence, medical, FCC etc.

Next is a bunch of “Lawyer” type questions. Think… any DUIs, any failures, do you have the right to live and work in the US, do you have a 737 type rating etc etc. Again, I answered yes to having a check-ride failure and so they asked me to explain it.

Then they ask questions about your background, just verifying employment/dates, asking why you left jobs. I was asked why there was an 11 month gap in my resume and why I went from 121 to 135 and now back to 121. I was also asked if I thought I would struggle coming from 135 back to 121. We then chatted for ten minutes about SW, and they answered all the questions I had.

Very chilled portion of the interview, just be honest, explain everything, be friendly

Then that was it for me and you’re free to go. I chose to hangout in the lobby for an 1:30 until 1200, just chatting with everyone before they went in for their turns and after they came out. But, a lot of people left straight away so don’t feel you have to do one over the other.

We were told that we’d either hear back the next day (Wednesday) with a CJO or have to wait until the following Monday after the Decision Panel. I was one of the lucky ones and received a CJO email the next night. I also received a call from a Chief Pilot on the Monday, which I thought was a nice touch.

Overall it was a very relaxed, pleasant experience. Be yourself, show your personality, be honest and engaging and you’ll have no issues. Also, remember you’re always being watched so, don’t be a d**k to the security guards, the janitor, your fellow interviewees or anyone.
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Old 10-28-2022, 06:21 AM
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Thanks for sharing, and congratulations!
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