A job interview sets the stage for the future of a company or organization. A great interview could make the difference between selecting a decent candidate or finding exceptional talent that will take your organization to new heights.
Whether you’re an interviewing rookie or a seasoned professional, developing a strategy takes time, dedication, and a little creativity. Next time you’re structuring your interview process, consider these four guidelines:
Create a Plan
Before interviewing candidates, identify core questions for the position, or the questions that apply to the key requirements of the job. Also, add some behavioral interview questions to assess if a candidate is a good cultural fit for your organization.
Even when interviewing several candidates for the same position, it’s important to address each as an individual. These men and women likely have diverse backgrounds and achievements, so spend time reviewing their resumes and adding some questions that reflect their experience.
Shape the Interview
When the day of the interview arrives, you’ll want to set the right environment for your meeting. Pick a space that’s free of distractions and hold your calls so you concentrate fully on interviewing candidates. Here’s how to begin:
- To start the interview, review the position’s key responsibilities, location, hours, and other important details. This will help give the candidate a chance to think of questions to ask later in the interview.
- Ask the core questions you developed in your pre-interview planning stage. Then, branch out into questions directly related to the candidate’s experience and career goals.
- When you’ve covered your interview questions, allow time for the candidate to ask some questions of their own.
- To wrap the interview up, explain the timeline for filling the position.
Take Good Notes
Listening closely to what candidates say is a critical part of how to interview well.
Be sure to take notes on the candidate’s resume so you’ll have all the information you need in the same space. Aside from what a candidate says, look for what a candidate does. Did they act professionally? Did they arrive on time? These factors should play an important part of the decision-making process.
If you discussed a specific timeline for filling the position during the interview, you should follow up with job candidates as close to that date as possible. Also be sure to ask for feedback from candidates so you can gauge the success of your interview process, and how you can improve your candidate experience moving forward.
Make sure you dedicate enough time to time to preparing for and conducting an interview. Learning how to interview will likely take you several tries to perfect, but these steps can help you on your way to finding the best candidate for the job.
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