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When many of us think of interviews, we think of the candidates first. Most guides online are written specifically to tailor to them with help on how to answer an employer’s questions, how to dress, and how to act. Rarely do many people realise the preparation that a business itself takes to streamline the interview process.
For an employer, it is important to regularly review the options chosen for interviewing your candidates. It may be difficult at times to see if your technique is working correctly, but there are ways to make sure you are creating the best first impression possible for your candidates while getting the information you need from them. The right technique will bring you the best employees.
Starting right at the first step of any interview process, you need to assess what your job advertisement looks like. Are you giving candidates enough information about the position? Is the most important information shown? Does your company come across well? Ask yourself these questions when forming your advertisement. A candidate’s first impression of your company may be through finding your advertisement. Do not let your chance to draw in a potentially incredible candidate pass you by simply because your advertisement was subpar.
Indicate to candidates the salary and benefits the job offers, alongside some company history. Draw them in and make yourself approachable.
There are numerous ways to conduct an interview now. Telephone, Skype, and in-person interviews are the most common and most interactive forms of interview. Choosing the right one for your business is important for securing your candidates. A combination of all three, however, could give you a better scope of your candidate’s knowledge and skills beyond their CV.
Start off by giving your candidates a phone call, getting to know them and arrange either a Skype or in-person interview. You may catch them off guard, but the lack of preparation may give way to honesty when they answer you and can be a good indication of how they handle a challenge. A Skype interview allows a candidate to be comfortable in their own home while talking to you and allows both of you to take a first look at one another.
An in-person interview is perhaps the best interview technique as you will be seeing how the candidate reacts to you face to face and if they enjoy where the workplace is. It is up to you to decide how you want to conduct your interviews, but for the best interview results conduct at least one in-person interview to get the best impressions of your candidate and yourself.
You are representing your company during the interview process, so everything you ask and respond with must show your company in the best light. Deciding which questions to ask depends on the type of candidate you are looking for and the role they will be expected to take on. There is no use asking about how good somebody’s IT skills are when they are applying to work in a job that requires physical labour and no computer use whatsoever.
Start by introducing yourself, the company, and run over the job available. Invite the candidate to tell you a little about them and help them settle into the atmosphere of the interview. Making them feel comfortable is important; a nervous candidate will withhold valuable information and potentially make them give the wrong signals, which neither candidate nor employer want to see. Encourage honesty in your own answers and with questions that provoke them to talk about how they want their career to progress. For example, ask them questions such as:
- Why do you want to work with our company?
- What is your biggest accomplishment to date?
- What would you say is your weakest trait/skill?
Leave questions open to interpretation and ask further ones specific to the job position itself. Most importantly? Listen and allow the candidate to answer and ask you questions. The right candidate will be open to learning more about yourself and the company, so always take the time to answer questions that they will undoubtedly have and show off your business in the best light.
Across all interviewed candidates, be sure to keep your questions the same. Seeing different responses to the same questions is easier to keep track of than unrelated questions and answers that reveal completely different things about each candidate. Keep it fair, and ask the same questions. There are many interview forms for employers online to refer to if you are unsure which direction to take with suggested interview questions to ask the candidate.
Taking your time and leaving a little breathing room between questions is beneficial to allow room for more comments and answers if they are required. Consider your candidates well, tailor your questions appropriately, and choose the right interview style for you. With the right interview technique, your business can start to hire the best possible candidates.