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Effective Interviewing

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Some managers dread the recruiting season for the obvious reasons. However, the right interviewing techniques and skills can turn an interview session into a breeze. Here is how you can get the best out of interviews and select the best candidates for your organization.

  • Carefully select your recruiting team. Make sure that you have the relevant recruiting brochures, relevant interviewing material, and that your recruiting skills are at their sharpest. If you have not conducted an interview in the recent past, brush up on your recruiting skills. For example, you might want to attend a relevant workshop on the topic. Additionally, make sure your recruiting team is well trained and has in-depth knowledge about the job.

  • Make sure that you and your recruiting team know what to look for in your candidates. Know your goals beforehand. Evaluate your candidates on predefined evaluation criteria. Additionally, ensure coordination in your team, and ensure that members are acquainted with their individual areas and roles during the interview process. Brief your team beforehand on individual roles and responsibilities. In brief, ensure that your team is well prepared for the interview process.

  • Ensure that you have a written set of job descriptions ready. This will give candidates an insight into the requirements of a given job. This will also strengthen coordination between the hiring and human resource functions in your organization. Ensure that the job descriptions include a description of the company, its mission, its products, and its services. Also, make sure a given job description clearly describes the responsibilities that the interviewee will need to shoulder. Lastly, be sure it includes a summary of the educational background and experience that the organization requires for successful candidates.

  • Communicate clearly to interviewees about your core expectations. Stick to the central recruiting message instead of utilizing the recruitment event for promotional activities. Recruiting is a serious affair, so use the occasion appropriately to recruit the best candidates. At the interviewing venue, keep detailed handouts about your company available for candidates’ reference.

  • The aforementioned handouts could include company literature, a brief description of the interview process, short profiles of the interview team members, and information on other recruitment-related subjects. Some companies prefer to keep hard copies of such handouts on hand for each candidate, while others simply put these up on their websites with directions on how to download them.

  • The best way forward is to conduct an interview in accordance with a clear set of questions that reveals the expected attributes of a worthy candidate. For example, as an interviewer, you might select your candidates based on behavioral attributes such as the ability to lead a team or the ability to learn quickly and pick up new skills. You can ask your questions in a way that requires candidates to provide examples of such behavior.

  • Study your candidates’ backgrounds in advance. Take some time to review their resumes and cover letters. Make a brief note about what you would expect from them, and jot down any particular questions that you would like to ask in the interview about their achievements and previous experience. During the interview itself, proceed efficiently so that candidates will know that you have done your homework in advance.

  • During the interview itself, you should also ensure that you are able to make the candidate feel comfortable with the recruiting team before you start asking questions. When you pose a question to the interviewee, wait for him or her to reply. At the same time, allow the candidate to ask questions in case any clarification is needed. Throughout the interviews, keep an eye out for the best match in terms of qualifications, skills, and experience.
To summarize, select candidates that possess the relevant experience and display enthusiasm about the company’s operations and business. At the same time, successful candidates should show a sense of purpose, the ability to showcase their talent, and a desire to improve and innovate continuously.
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