How to get the most out of a job interview

Securing the right employees is crucial to the success of any business; it is important to not only recruit employees who can fulfil the technical requirements of a job description, but that can also work effectively and harmoniously with other staff members. 

Job interviews often play an integral role in helping employers to find the right “fits” for particular positions, as they enable the employer to get a general impression of candidates’ personalities, temperaments, communications skills and confidence levels – all of which cannot be fully ascertained by simply examining a individual’s résumé or cover letter.

What steps should an interviewer take during an interview to ensure that they secure the right person for a particular job?

1. Prepare in advance: Make yourself familiar with the candidate’s background and résumé;

2. Be strategic with your questions: Develop a limited set of specific questions relating to the key duties and responsibilities entailed in the job in order to probe for the candidate's strengths and weaknesses. In addition, consider the way in which you frame your questions. For example,  closed  questions usually garner short, succinct responses, while open-ended questions often function to elicit more detailed answers and insights;

3. Limit interruptions: In order for you to effectively pick up on the nuances of a candidate’s character and personality you have to be fully committed to listening to them and actively examining their behaviour. Interruptions often work to break one’s concentration, and as such you should endeavour to conduct the interview in an environment that is private and secure; 

4. Focus on the candidate’s answer, not your next question: To get optimum responses from candidates it is essential that you enable the conversation to flow evenly and organically. This can be achieved by following the lines of enquiry that result from how a candidate responds to a question;

5. Make sure that you know exactly what you’re looking for in a candidate: Put together a list of the core abilities that you think are necessary for the role in question and immediately following each interview, wrote down whether the candidate appears to fulfil each criterion. 

An interview is usually the last stage in the recruitment process, and as such, it is likely that all shortlisted candidates will have positive qualities that could potentially benefit your business. Given such, it is important for you to stay consistent, focused and sure of what you want in a candidate. In doing such, you will be able to decipher points of differentiation amongst candidates, which should ultimately steer you in the right direction to selecting the best “fit” for your team.

Posted by George Tarbey on 30/08/2012 at 12:00 AM | Categories:

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