When you’re running an interview it’s with the aim of finding exactly the right candidate for your business. Whether that’s a new entry level developer, or you’ve found a London Executive Search firm that provides the high level execs you’re looking for to round out your team, the principle is the same: you need to behind the CV they’ve submitted, interrogate their experience and find out if they’re the right fit for your business.
You’ll find it difficult if your interview process intimidates candidates so thoroughly that they can’t speak freely or even gather their thoughts. While a degree of confidence is always helpful in a job – especially in a sales recruit, but any role will have times where a person needs to stand their ground – turning the interview into a test of that is hardly helpful.
Here are some tips for putting your candidates at ease, and getting the best answers from them so you can make an informed choice for your next hire.
One thing to avoid is surprising your candidates. Make sure the job description is a fair and accurate summary of the skills and qualities you’re looking for and will be basing the interview on. If your questions to candidates bear no resemblance to the job you advertised not only will they be surprised and undermined, they’ll also not be ready to provide useful, illuminating answers for you.
If you’re planning to test some technical skills, make sure you’re up front about this. Springing a test on a candidate when they aren’t expecting doesn’t just stop you getting the result you want, it also casts you in a poor light and might stop the candidate you like wanting to work with you.
Think about the setting you’re conducting your interview in. While it’s convenient to hold interviews in the office, the usual set up of the panel staring down the candidate across a desk can be very intimidating.
If you’re aiming for a more informal, conversational interview, try mixing up the setting a bit. Getting out of the office and into a coffee shop could be a good idea. If you can’t do that, simply sitting in a circle, rather than confronting the candidate is a great way to turn down the emotional heat and turn the interview into a conversation.