So, I'm interviewing for a production position with BMW, which is just up the road a ways in Greer. They're hiring bunches of people. I'm hoping I get to be one of them, since it's certainly better than what I'm doing now, and pays better, and has benefits (not better benefits; it just plain has benefits, where what I'm doing now has nothing). But I wanted to get some inside scoop on the interview and the assessments and such and it was very very difficult to find anything on this here interweb about the BMW interview process.
So I thought I'd mention a few things about the BMW interview process in Greer (which is near Spartanburg and Greenville). And yes, I'm deliberately repeating myself so this will actually show up on search engines in case somebody else is looking.
So, they've got this system now where you apply on line through MAU; they have a separate section of the website just for BMW stuff, which is cool. I evidently filled out an application with them long enough ago that I don't remember, but it doesn't consist of much, mostly just basic work history and contact info. Then you get to schedule your own interview. This is quite awesome, especially if like me you currently have a job and can't skip work to do it. Earliest interview times are 8:30.
They have about 150 slots available for interviews but they aren't actually interviewing anywhere near that many people each day, so you'll probably be able to get the interview for the day after you apply and since there are at least four interviewers you should be able to get the timeslot you want without hassle.
What to wear? It would have been nice to find information about what to wear to the BMW interview with MAU (sorry, but this is how search engines work these days), so I figured, okay, it's a factory-floor job I'm going for here, I'm not going to do the coat and tie thing. But it's still an interview, and you should always overdress for a job interview. I wore my good black slacks and a long-sleeve dress shirt. I considered a tie but I just hate the things so much, so I skipped it.
I was far and away the most overdressed applicant in the office when I got there. Actually, I would say I was the most professionally dressed person in the office period; MAU is not a coat-and-tie sort of place. There were people there in jeans and t-shirts and ratty tennis shoes, no kidding. They may have been applying for positions with other companies, of course (MAU handles contracts other than just BMW, though I'd guess BMW probably provides about 60% of their business), but regardless, this was still an interview place, not a day-labor shop. (Ugh. I remember working at Labor Ready one summer when I was home from college. What a rotten job. I think there's actually a Labor Ready branch office here in Greenville, up in (surprise surprise) the hispanic section of town. I don't miss that.)
I would say you should probably wear khakis and a collared shirt. You want to look nicer than the real slobs there, but I was definitely overdressed. Clearly you could wear jeans and still pass the interview, but please. Take yourself seriously.
So the interview itself (the initial interview for a BMW production job with MAU in Greenville, Greer, or Spartanburg) is the easiest interview you'll ever go through. First they have you fill out a work history and contact information (including SSN) while you're waiting in the lobby. You'll take that paperwork in with you to the interview.
The interviewer will ask you if you'd be able to work any shift, any day of the week. The correct answer is yes. If you can't agree to that BMW doesn't want you and you don't want them. She'll ask if you have any scheduled time off in the next couple of months that you'll have to take--surgeries, weddings, that sort of thing. I mentioned that I hoped I'd get to take some vacation time at Christmas. This didn't seem to matter. She'll ask how many days you've missed from work without permission in the last three months. I misinterpreted this question and tried to account for sick days and the day I had to go to court, but of course I had permission for both of those. So I ended up saying two, which of course sounds like an awful lot to me, really; missing work without permission, that's Dollar General-cashier grade stuff. But obviously it wasn't bad enough to get me kicked out.
She also asked if I'd ever been convicted of any misdemeanors or felonies. To which of course I must answer yes because of the swimming incident in 2003. She started to write down what I was saying, got as far as the word "swimming," and then stopped me and said, "But you don't have anything major going on now, right?" So obviously a goofy misdemeanor several years old won't get you tossed out, either. I don't know how far you could push this; I doubt a single misdemeanor would knock you out, or even two or three if they were old. If you have a string of them maybe. I'm pretty sure you can get on there with a felony conviction if it was old and you haven't had any other issues.
And that was it. The very next question after the criminal history one was, can you attend the first assessment today at 11:30? Which I couldn't, I had to work, but I signed up for this morning instead. She seemed fine to push it until late next week if I had to, but if you're able to take a day off work and schedule an interview early you might be able to get interview and assessment out of the way in one shot.