What does your company’s interview experience look like?
When you think of interview preparation, most think of the candidate putting in the time to be their best self. The best candidates do spend hours getting ready, researching the company, the leaders, and the job description. But how much do companies prepare? Some do, and some don’t. Here are some reasons for employers to have a game plan.
- Company Image
The experience of the applicant is long-lasting and influential. Leadership should decide what they want the candidate experience to be.The one spearheading the interview shall communicate the same with the entire interview panel. It’s a good look when everyone is on the same page. Also, try to stick to the times listed on the agenda. There is usually at least one interviewer that decides to run over the allocated time. You know who you are! Unless there is a unique value in the extra time with said person, I would avoid this and move the applicant to the next phase.
- Does the panel know how to interview?
Create a schedule of what you want each panel member to uncover during the interview process. Each interviewer should play a specific role in the evaluation and selling of your company. One person may evaluate their technical acumen while another will tackle their leadership skills. Let the respective panel members know you are holding them accountable to that critical arm of the interview process. Make sure they prepare with pertinent, and of course, legal questions. Your team may be asking illegal questions during every interview, and you don’t even know it.
- Know the candidate’s hot buttons
Debrief the panel beforehand on the “story” of the candidate. Example: “John is passively looking, he has been with XYZ Company for 12 years and reluctant to leave but knows that he may not be able to grow unless he gets involved in more innovative technology. He is motivated by technology and culture.” This information allows each panel member to focus on what is most important to John and understand his fear.
- Always be selling
Companies spend millions on marketing but often forget that talking to job applicants is an aspect of marketing. The team should always be ready to highlight the value proposition of working for your organization and discuss why they enjoy working there. Besides, the interview is a two-way street. The candidate is evaluating the company as well, which is why it is essential to uncover the candidate’s real motivation. Once you grasp their goals and needs, the selling aspect becomes more than just throwing around a lot of features and benefits; the dialogue becomes relevant to the candidate.