Eight Ways to Improve your Interview Process

Developing an effective interview technique is not something that will happen overnight. It requires preparation and practice to be able to grow your teams. Without a crystal ball to help you see how every appointment could turn out, you need to learn how to properly interview individuals to bring out the best in them.

In this guide, we will look at the interview process as a whole, breaking it down into the individual components that will determine your success. If you want to be a more effective interviewer, read on to discover our expert tips.

interview process

1. Write a powerful job description

A successful job interview process all starts with an accurate and engaging job description. A lot of companies think they can cast a wider net with a vague description, but this will simply put people off from applying. Instead, you should get specific about the type of person you want in this role. You should be specific about the experience and skills you require, the job, and what remuneration package you can offer in return. This is the only way you will be able to generate a lot of buzz and interest around the role.

2. Filter the applications 

Sorting through applications can be a time-consuming process. This is why many companies outsource this part of the process to an external company. Find a company with experience in your niche and they will be able to act as an external arm of your company. A company like Nolan Recruitment could help with your technical recruitment and offer added insight into current hiring trends in your field. 

Once you have a select list of potential candidates, make sure you arrange interviews with a range of candidates. Interviewing up-and-comers alongside established professionals can give you more options. 

3. Choose your interview format

Will you have a technical interview, a panel interview, or an informal interview? How you decide to proceed at this stage will rely entirely on your business culture. A tech startup might have an informal interview with the founder, while a large multinational corporation might host a panel interview with a few key stakeholders. Choosing the right format for your interview can help the other elements to fall into place.

4. Assemble your panel

If you decide to run a panel interview, think about who needs to be in that room. Panel interviews with too many stakeholders can become chaotic and unnecessarily stressful, so make sure you limit the number in attendance. 

It’s common for an interview panel to include someone from HR, the head of the department, and a member of the senior management team. If the role works across multiple departments, this could increase the number of people required in the room. 

5. Establish the questions

You need a set of core questions to determine their suitability and then some more flexible lines of questioning to probe further into the candidate’s background and experience. All questions should be agreed before the interview and you need to decide who will ask each question. If you don’t get everyone on the same page beforehand, your interview could become chaotic and incredibly long.

6. Give the candidate time to ask questions

All candidates should be allowed to ask questions at the end. Remember that the interview process is not a one-way system. As much as you are deciding if the candidate is right for the role, the candidate also needs to decide if the role is right for them. And when the questioning is turned on you, it’s time to provide informed and considered answers, just as you would expect from the candidate.

7. Prioritise feedback

Candidates always want to know how an interview went, so even if you decide not to hire them, make sure you take the time to give them feedback. This is the only way they will be able to improve in their next interview. It might not seem like a priority to you, but even small bits of feedback can go a long way.

8. Be timely

The best candidates don’t stick around for long. If you waste time getting back to the candidates and letting them know if they have been successful, or if you would like to invite them to a second interview, you could see them snapped up by another company. Be timely in your responses and don’t leave anyone waiting around to learn the next steps.

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