Interview like a Pro

Technology has evolved the recruitment process and in some cases taken over the screening and sourcing procedures. However there is one thing that cannot be taken over by any artificial intelligence, The Interview.


An interview is more than simple questions and standard answers, it is about getting to know your candidates and seeing if you can meet your business goals alongside this new cohort.


In order for you to conduct an effective interview you need to be able to assess all necessary information that is provided or not provided during a conversation. It's important to consider the following before even speaking to a potential candidate:


  • What is the future or potential movement for your current opening

  • Rating system for your questions

  • The position level (entry level to executive)

  • Personality and previous experience


Once you’ve considered these nuances, you can now start preparing for your interview and have a stronger foundation for your upcoming conversation.


It’s important to create a trusting and friendly atmosphere in order for you to really learn more about a person. Candidates are nervous and full of tension so putting them at ease will allow you to assess their real personality in a professional manner.


Interview questions should be clear and simplified so candidates can focus on answering rather than trying to understand your question. Don’t ask too many questions at once as you need to give candidates time to absorb and interject as much knowledge as they can to show you their abilities. If your conversation strays a little, allow it, as there is more the candidate is revealing.


Here are some helpful tips for your next interview:


  • Let the candidate do the talking, the golden rule is to speak 20% and allow the interviewee to speak 80%. Your job is to listen and observe the potential employee as much as possible.

  • Pay attention to non-verbal cues such as confidence in their sitting/standing position, hesitation and resistance to certain topics and reactions to co-workers and other staff members.

  • Listen to the little details when a candidate is speaking. If they say they like to complete tasks as quickly as possible to be efficient, maybe they are not as thorough or detail oriented. If they talk about their travels around the world and future plans, time off may be very important or a strict schedule may not be ideal.


Interviews are about getting to know a person and connecting their experience to a role within your business. You have a job that needs qualified personnel to manage critical tasks, so finding the best candidate is a priority. There is no guarantee when hiring but performing a strong interview will increase your chances of a successful hire.


A good recruiter will recognize signs and review some very important details during an interview. Here are some specific points to look for in your next candidate.


  1. Job Jumping

Many applicants will make a resume and hide details of multiple jobs or tend to create inaccurate timeline to reflect tenor. If you see multiple jobs or short timelines, don’t be afraid to ask about it. You have a right to understand what makes an employee leave or what is the motive for them to work. It’s not necessarily a cause for concern but it does require more investigation.


  1. Ambiguous or Superior Job Titles

Every business creates jobs and job titles based on the culture and structure of an organization. Titles can reflect responsibilities so when speaking to candidates, if you feel the applicant is being vague or unable to give specific details, don’t assume it’s untrue. Ask the candidate situational questions where they can use a real life example to prove their abilities. Their previous title does not reflect on your organization but functionality in the role will. Focus on the title of your position you are filing and explain the company structure clearly to the candidate so there is no question about what they are applying for.


  1. Overlapping work

Resumes are a reflection of our experience and more and more we are seeing candidates with plenty of skills. Side jobs, hobbies and additional work has become common for applicants so if you see more than 1 position during the same period, dive deeper. Why are they working multiple roles? What kind of schedule will be ideal and does your business work with their schedule?


  1. Dressed to impress

A candidate who cares will take into account their appearance. Fashion is a personality statement so if a candidate understands your workplace they will dress accordingly. If they are overdressed it could be a statement of an overachiever or underdressed they are laid back and want a more comfortable setting. Your business has a right to establish a dress code as long as it does not discriminate or offend a person’s human rights. You can learn a lot about a candidate just by the choices they make when meeting you for the 1st time.


Lastly, as an interviewer, remember to be respectful and have compassion. You will get to know more about the candidate's skills with assessment tests, references and background checks. Interviewing is only the 1st step towards hiring so try not to be intrusive and enjoy the company.

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