5 Tips for Recruiters to make Interviews more effective.

Organisations depend a great deal on recruiters in attracting and retaining the right talent. They play a pivotal role in bridging the talent gap and propelling the organisation towards success. Out of their several responsibilities, conducting interviews is perhaps the most crucial part of a recruiter’s job. An interview is a short window where the recruiter has to assess if the candidate is the right fit for the job and the organisation. Secondly, it is also the opportunity for the recruiter to promote the employer’s brand in the external world. 

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Interviews are important as they give a glimpse of the organisational culture to the candidates and can influence their decision to join the firm. As per a survey, a staggering 83% of candidates said that they may not go ahead with a job offer after a negative interview experience. A negative experience can, thus not only dissuade a well-qualified candidate but also, land the recruiter back on square one. While a new recruiter certainly has a lot to learn, even a seasoned recruiter can benefit from adopting a fresh take on interviews. Here are a few ways in which a recruiter can prepare and conduct effective interviews.

1. Prepare for the interview

The life of a recruiter is constantly buzzing. Writing attractive job descriptions, engaging passive candidates, scheduling interviews, negotiating the offer and convincing the candidates. These are just a few responsibilities of a recruiter. Despite running such a busy schedule, a recruiter should always enter an interview well-prepared. Here is what goes into the interview preparation.

The life of a recruiter is constantly buzzing. Writing attractive job descriptions, engaging passive candidates, scheduling interviews, negotiating the offer and convincing the candidates. These are just a few responsibilities of a recruiter. Despite running such a busy schedule, a recruiter should always enter an interview well-prepared. Here is what goes into the interview preparation.

  • Clarity about the role on offer – It may help to spend some time with the hiring manager to understand the job responsibilities and expectations. It is a good practice to set a weekly calendar with the hiring manager to make this an ongoing process. This will help you in asking the right questions to ascertain if the candidate is the right fit for the job. Secondly, the recruiter must know the team structure to answer any hierarchy-related questions from the candidate. Lastly, it will help in understanding how the role will contribute towards larger goals of the organisation. Candidates always appreciate such transparency.
  • Study the candidate’s profile – As per a Careerbuilder study, 64% of candidates research about a company when they see a job posting. Since most candidates are walking-in prepared, they would appreciate a similar approach from you. Impress AI can provide deep insights about a candidate through their chatbot conversations and video interviews. For instance, the recruiter can go through the chat transcript to understand the candidate’s motivation to change the current job. Video interviews can give a glimpse of the candidate’s communication skills. These inputs can drastically reduce a recruiter’s efforts.
  • Prepare answers for possible candidate queries – Most common questions could relate to the financial compensation, work-life balance and growth opportunities. 
  • Know the next steps in the interview process – Let the candidate know if there are any online assessments, assignments or further rounds of interviews. This will help the candidate to work out his calendar in the following days.

2. Opt for structured interviews

Let’s be honest. One hour is not enough to gauge how the candidate will perform on the job. It becomes all the more difficult when recruiters and hiring managers step inside the interview room unprepared. There is no greater folly than relying on one’s judgement to assess a candidate. Secondly, several biases can also lead to wrong decisions. Recruiters can eliminate these problem areas from the interview process through structured interviews. This approach will allow you to be more objective and ask the same set of questions to every candidate. To make it more effective, you can note down the responses and evaluate the applicants relatively. Google, known for its hiring success, has been using this technique for years now.

3. Ask open-ended questions

Interview is not the right method to assess candidate on-the-job performance. Instead, the main focus of the recruiter should be to understand the behavioural aspects of the candidates. For instance, the motivation to change the current job, teamwork capabilities and communication skills. The best way to assess such qualities is by asking open-ended questions. Ask for instances to know about past experiences and performance. Often, the recruiters may have to read between the lines and get the answers they are looking for.

4. Be engaged during the interview

The recruiter carries a huge responsibility of being the face of the organisation to industry talent. Thus it is all the more essential for the recruiter to foster a positive interview experience. This cannot be achieved unless the recruiter is present, both physically and mentally, throughout the interview process. First and foremost, the recruiter must turn off the cell phone to give full attention to the candidates. Secondly, the recruiter should practice becoming an active listener. This will help in asking follow-up questions and expressing a genuine interest in the candidate’s application. Most candidates will come prepared for the opening questions. However, it is the follow-up questions that can give more clarity about the candidate’s behaviour patterns. Thirdly, the recruiter should be enthusiastic and display a passion for the job and organisation. This will leave a positive impression on the candidate and enhance the prospect of job offer acceptance.

5. Prepare the offer

If you are gearing up for the last round of interview, it would be a good idea to have a ballpark figure in your mind. Discuss the offer with the hiring manager before the interview so that both are on the same page. To arrive at a reasonable and acceptable offer, ask for all the relevant documents and understand the candidate’s expectations.

These simple tips can make a huge difference in making interviews more effective and garnering positive outcomes. Besides, they will also help the recruiters to gain valuable experience and accelerate their growth.

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