You want to hire only the best – 6 steps to conducting a flawless interview

The importance of the people your business relies upon to meet the challenges of a tough economy can hardly be overstated. But, to ensure that you are hiring top performers, you have to know how to conduct interviews that’ll take your business forward.

Given SDP Services’ vast experience and expertise as a talent recruitment agency, we would like to outline a few interview fundamentals that may mean the difference between a mediocre hire and a great hire.

  1. Prepare, prepare and prepare some more

The first step is the creation of a job description that lets you know exactly what you need from an applicant. Don’t hold back as a clearly articulated job description will give you a very good profile of the attributes that an ideal candidate should display. The second phase of preparation involves generating a list of questions that allow you to accurately assess the suitability of a potential employee. Having a set list also means that you’ll have a consistent and objective measure to work with, and are fair to each interviewee.

  1. Setting the scene

Interviews are more helpful and informative when both the interviewer and interviewee are comfortable; communication is better and, with reduced stress, the candidate will speak more freely. Try to conduct the interview in a comfortable room, and start with easy, non-invasive questions like, “Where did you grow up?” Breaking the ice and establishing a conversational tone will only enhance the interaction.

  1. Outline the job

If you advertised the position, the chances are that the candidate has read the job description. A quick reminder, however, will refresh her memory, and enable her to answer questions with the end objective in mind.

  1. Ask the skills-based questions you’ve prepared

Skills are more often than not augmented and developed on the job, but having a good idea as to an applicant’s skills level will let you know if they’ll be able to hit the ground running or will need some help in getting where you want them to be. Even if the post is non-technical, knowing the candidate’s current abilities will improve your understanding of the process going forward.

  1. Ask the behavioural and situational questions you’ve prepared

Skills are important, but emotional intelligence may sometimes mean even more in an employee’s success. Assessing emotional intelligence is not an easy task, but by asking a candidate what they may do in “such-and-such” a situation will give you a great deal of information regarding their level of maturity, their leadership potential, and whether or not they’ll adapt to the culture of your business sufficiently. Candidates with a high emotional intelligence often turn out to be a “good-fit” as they’ll make a sincere effort to adopt your organisation’s values and principles.

  1. Sell the position and answer questions

Don’t assume that the reputation of your business is enough to convince a candidate that the role is a great opportunity. By telling her why your company is the place to be, you only increase her enthusiasm and the probability that she’ll accept an offer. Then let her ask you questions; just as you expect honesty and openness from the interviewee, extend her the same courtesy. Getting her career started at your company begins right here, in the interview, and trust is always crucial in any working relationship.

For consultation, talent discovery and recruitment, HR-related queries or further information, please don’t hesitate to contact the experts at SDP Services.

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