How to improve your interviewing technique
We often hear tips on how to be a good interviewee, but what about interviewers? As a Hiring Manager, a lot of pressure is on your shoulders to identify the right talent for your organisation and conducting an effective job interview is a skill unto itself. Asking the right questions, digging for the answers you want, active listening, being confident in your approach and making the candidate feel welcome is all a part of your role as an employer.
So let’s dig in! We’re going to discuss the techniques needed to be a good interviewer with tips for the preparation phase, the interview itself, and what to do after the interview.
Prepare For The Interview
Prepare Interview Questions
A top tip for interviewers is to prepare a plan for the interview by creating a list of interview questions that you want to ask. This may seem like an obvious tip, but the preparation hiring managers put into their interview processes will strongly impact their results.
Take the time to think about what exactly the role requires. Different kinds of questions will be required depending on what stage of the interview process you are at. For example, once you have assessed a candidate’s experience and skills, you may want to pose a behavioural interview question to assess how they would react in different workplace situation.
Hireserve ATS recruitment software can assist hiring mangers to create job specific questions in the application process in order to find out more about the candidate before the interview begins. Employers are able to build and design completely custom application forms for different roles.
Organise an Interview schedule
Staying organised can help employers to feel confident when in the interviewing process, and help to minimise stress and allow for a more effective, seamless job interview.
Planning questions is a part of ensuring your stay organised for interviews, but it is also important to schedule your interviews effectively so that you do not rush the interview or attend a meeting with your mind still reeling from the previous candidate. Disorganised or rushed interviews can make the candidate feel like you haven’t got time for them, and negate the process of getting to know a potential hire.
Using the automated interview scheduling tool in Hireserve’s ATS system can help interviewers to schedule and plan interviews so that they do not disrupt the busy work flow of your day and cut out the need for manual administrative tasks that would often consume a lot of an employer’s time.
Practice makes perfect! Rehearsing your interview techniques is a good way to feel prepared, especially if you’re a first time interviewer.
It is common advice that candidates should practice interviews by conducting mock interviews with friends or family, practicing handshakes and how you are presenting yourself both verbally and physically. The same applies to the interviewer.
It is your job to make a good impression and also represent the company in a positive light and get across the company culture, so practice keeping your facial expressions neutral and nodding along in a way that doesn’t make you look like a bobble head!
The Job Interview
Writing notes throughout the job interview is a great to retain any relevant information that you feel you may need to remember about the candidate. This technique is one that’s easy to forget in the midst of getting to know a candidate, but taking notes means you are also able to refer back each candidate to ensure that you do not forget any details and are able to make a more informed decision for the next phase of the interview process.
Using Hireserve ATS, you should be able to record your interview notes directly into the system. This not only saves you time, but also ensures your interview feedback is more secure, and will be consistently formatted with other interviewer panel feedback.
Behavioural interview questions
A good interview will include different types of questions. Some of these you may be able to plan and prepare, and some questions may be spontaneous based off of the flow of the interview and the topics the candidate may be referencing.
Make sure you’re asking open-ended, behavioural questions. This interview technique is an excellent method to deduce the candidate’s previous experience with problem solving skills, helping you to figure out which candidate is the most appropriate to hire.
Ask the candidate to use examples of times in which they can to solve a problem. This can showcase relevant skills that may be required for the job, such as effective communication skills, leadership skills and problem solving skills.
Notice Body Language
Potential candidates can say just as much with their body language as they can with their words. Throughout the job interview, focus on the potential employee’s non-verbal communication, as it is an opportunity to assess their interpersonal skills and how they conduct themselves. They may be giving you answers that you didn’t need to ask a question to get.
This demonstrates an important part the individuals personality, and whether they’re a potential good fit for the job and work environment, how engaged they are and how they handle themselves in a professional situation.
Prepare your answers
A key part to improving your interview technique is realising that you are being interviewed just as much as the candidate is. Provide an opportunity for the interviewee to become the interviewer, and leave some time at the end of the interview to answer any questions the interview may have.
Prepare some answers that you think the candidate may ask about the job, the work environment or the company as a whole so that you are not caught off guard.
Be flexible with the way you interview
Largely due to COVID-19, remote and flexible working has become more popular than ever. As an interviewer, you too should learn to be flexible for the different circumstances in which you may have to interview in, for example, the traditional one-on-one, a video interview, phone interview or group interview.
Hireserve can facilitate seamless video interviews from within the ATS software so that hiring managers, interviewers and candidates can access remote interviews without the need for a Google Meet or Zoom link.
It’s important to follow up with interviewee as they are waiting to see whether they have been successful or not. If the candidate has been unsuccessful, be sure to focus on a lot of the positives from their interview, but don’t refrain from giving them honest, constructive feedback either.
Did you know? Over 70% candidates expect detailed feedback after an interview, without having to request it! Find out more about what candidates want and need from the hiring process with our Candidate Behaviour: The Big Report research.
A top interviewing skill for Hiring Managers and Interviewers is to provide actionable advice to candidates on how they can improve for their next job interview, and be open to answering any questions they may have about their interviewing skills. These conversations don’t need to be awkward when they are seen as a positive constructive conversation. These conversations are also fruitful for interviewers to build their talent pools for future hiring processes as a candidate may be open to considering and applying for future roles in your organisation if their feedback is impactful.
The Hireserve Talent Pool functionality enables interviewers and employers to keep track of their silver medalists in interview processes and approach them for future openings in an organisation.
Refining your interview techniques is something that can only be done through effectively through experience.
Whether you’re a first time interviewer, or an experienced Hiring Manager, an effective ATS system can make help to facilitate good habits for interviewers. Check out Hireserve ATS to see how you can optimise your organisation’s hiring processes. Get in touch to request a demo today.
And for more insights around interviewing, why not check out these articles:
- Accessibility: 5 tips for inclusive interviews
- Online interviews: Are you getting them right?
- New candidate research: What does the future of interviewing look like?