Hiring great candidates is critical to your company’s success – and the interview process helps you identify them. The most successful hiring organizations know that the simplest improvements in their process can have a positive impact on crucial metrics like quality of hire and time to fill. While there’s no magic formula for interviewing, read on to see a few interview tips that can produce strong results for employers.
Communicate regularly with candidates
Lack of communication is one of the biggest complaints job seekers have about the interview process, so regular communication can set your company apart and keep candidates engaged. Start off on the right foot by communicating your interview process, complete with next steps and timing – and then deliver on it.
If you need to deviate from your normal process, it’s crucial to communicate these changes with candidates. Candidates can be extremely agile if you keep them informed about your interview process, but may not stick around if you spring surprises on them. Top-tier candidates are in high demand, and a simple phone call, email, or even a text message, can go a long way toward keeping them engaged in your recruitment process.
Provide interviewer training
Your interviewers make a tremendous impact on hiring, both in terms of assessing candidates and providing a great candidate experience – but many of them have no idea what they’re doing. Interviewing isn’t anybody’s full time job, so training interviewers can make your employees and candidates more comfortable throughout the recruitment process.
Review which phone interview questions interviewers should, and should not, ask, and teach them how to properly evaluate answers. Remind interviewers to treat candidates as they would want to be treated, since candidates are evaluating you as much as you are evaluating them. Finally, hold a kickoff meeting before you begin interviewing to review job- and department-specific interview training. When your interviewers are better prepared, they will know how to identify the highest quality candidates, and provide a candidate experience that makes your top-choice candidates want to join your company.
Provide interview feedback to candidates
Providing interview feedback gives candidates a great experience which, in turn, builds your employer brand and keeps your talent pipeline full. Once you’ve made a decision to pass on a given candidate, let them know so they aren’t left wondering. Whenever possible, provide candidates with constructive feedback, so they can improve for future interviews. A well-constructed interview evaluation form should give you all the information you need to provide feedback.
You want every candidate to walk away with a great candidate experience so they speak highly of your company to others and contribute positively to your employer brand. Candidates may even use your feedback to improve, and come back to apply for future opportunities – keeping your talent pipeline full and helping you hire high quality talent faster.
Experiment with interview tactics to see what works
There’s no silver bullet for interviewing. Each company is looking for candidates with a unique balance of skills and cultural fit, and each interview process must be unique to accomodate that. Experiment with different interview tactics to decide what works best to uncover candidates with the technical abilities and cultural fit your company wants.
Try to find the right balance between assessment thoroughness and candidate experience. What works well for one company won’t necessarily work in another. The same goes for tactics that have failed elsewhere – it can’t hurt to give them a try to see if they work in your environment, with the candidates you want to hire. By continually testing new ideas, companies can optimize their interview processes to win the best candidates for their teams.
In today’s competitive candidate market, there is always room for improvement in your interview process to hire better quality candidates, faster. While there’s no silver bullet, smart hiring organizations have found that even the smallest changes can yield big results. Use these interview tips as a starting point to develop your own secret sauce for hiring, and watch your interview process raise your hiring bar.
Learn more interview best practices in our eBook Top Interview Tips: The Employer’s Essential Handbook.