Interviews can be very tricky. Many organisations fall into the trap of being wowed by the wrong people. Yet getting it wrong is very expensive. It has been estimated that hiring someone unsuitable costs three times the salary paid to that person. Not only do you have the costs of the wages paid to the employee, but there are also significant expenses associated with the time spent training the person and then the further time and cost spent hiring someone to fill the gap.
Getting it right in the interview is key to success in finding the best candidate for your team. So how can it be done?
- Draw on a variety of question types – avoid sticking to tried and tested interview questions if they have not worked well in the past. Mixing it up with a variety of different question types is likely to give a much more rounded view of the candidate. Consider including the following:
Competence-based questions: these dig deeper to understand if the candidate actually has the skills and competencies needed for the role. They might include “Can you tell me more about your skills in…”
Questions about motivation: these help to pinpoint if the candidate’s values will line up with the organisation’s. They might include “What do you like most/least about your current role.”
Behavioural questions: these help you to understand attitudes of the candidates. They may start with “Tell me about a time when…”
Situational questions: these also provide more detail about how a person might handle certain types of problems in the workplace which may typically arise. They may start with “What would you do if…”
- Assess emotional intelligence – candidates that have emotional intelligence will be better communicators and team workers. They will be self-aware and understand how their behaviour impacts others. They will be better at managing their own stress and better at forming and maintaining collaborative relationships with others. Consider asking them about their assertiveness, their faults and how they handle disappointments to gain improved insight on this.
- Don’t forget the soft skills – a candidate might tick the boxes on all of the essential and desirable technical skills, but are they a team player? Will they have the right attitude? Can they adapt and are they open to learning? Technical skills can often be easily learned, but if a person comes in with the wrong attitude that can be very difficult to change. Behavioural questions are useful in weeding out the wrong candidates. For example, ask candidates about an example of dealing with change or about how they worked with someone who was difficult. Listen for examples of listening, thoughtfulness, flexibility and eagerness to learn and grow with the business.
- Beware of unconscious bias – research shows that unconscious bias can be very damaging within the hiring process, including in interviews. It is very easy to be quickly steered towards liking people that are like us, derailing the interview. Just because you instantly like someone does not mean they will be the best fit for the job. Becoming aware of your own unconscious biases and training others to gain awareness of theirs is tremendously helpful in overcoming this problem.
If you want to be sure to get it right in interviews, why not work SureSkills? Get in touch to find out how we can support your recruitment process.