Face it: For the average mid-manager, the recruiting process is a total inconvenience: it takes you away from your job, is often politically charged, and can lead to a dead end, keeping you and your department from running full steam ahead. . . But take heart: the more organized and considerate you are in preparing for the job interview, the faster you can identify and hire a great person.
In my job as the director of a recruiting and staffing firm, I continually receive reports from candidates pointing out a failure on the part of hiring managers to adequately prepare for the job interview. The result is that often the better Candidates for a particular position may feel so put off by the way they were treated that they simply walk away from the opportunity.
An endless supply?
In today’s business world, employers are more selective than ever. To be considered, job candidates must demonstrate that they possess very specific skills, very particular personal qualities, and an ability to adapt to a unique corporate environment.
Not only that, employers seem intent on waiting for exactly the right person rather than taking a chance on someone who isn’t. No exactly correct. In fact, it’s quite common these days for the hiring process to take three months or more, even for a freelance or temp position!
While employers have become much more selective, it is also true that a strong labor market has put a pinch on the supply of viable candidates. In fact, contrary to what some managers assume, there are simply No an inexhaustible pool of qualified people to choose from. That is why each the qualified candidate must be treated with the utmost care during the recruitment process. and proper preparation is the key.
make a shopping list
Usually, when you start shopping for a new car, digital camera or other gadget with many technical features, you must first think, plan and research. For example, you need to decide which product features are important to you, what your budget is, your preferences for form versus function, and so on. Similarly, the same is true when looking to hire the right candidate for the position.
Before you can start to think When it comes to interviewing someone, you should prepare a coherent job description (checklist) that defines the type of person you are looking for. As a management recruiter, I have noticed that very often hiring managers do not necessarily prepare such a description, this is especially true in the case of contract or independent openings, something we see all the time in our hiring business. staff.
At the very least, I would strongly recommend that you put pen to paper, or fingers to keyboard, whichever you prefer, and prepare a summary of the job responsibilities and a list of the personal skills and qualities the person will need to do the job. worked. job well This can be used as a yardstick during job interviews.
As a recruiter, I have often found job descriptions to be inaccurate or change radically as the recruiting process progresses. In fact, one of our largest corporate clients (who will remain unnamed) has been known to alter job descriptions every two to three days. This can be particularly frustrating for those in my profession, as well as HR, who must spend hours identifying candidates that fit a specific job profile, only to discover that the profile is no longer valid.
To avoid wasting everyone’s time, including yourself, try to make sure you get the data right from the start, that you review job descriptions thoroughly with others in your department, including the department. head. Once you have reached an agreement, then and only then should you post a job description for distribution.
Know your company
An important part of interview preparation is making sure you’ll be able to answer common questions that job candidates ask.
Our job candidates tell us that managers often know a lot about their own department or division, but often know next to nothing about the organization as a whole.
Make sure you know key statistics such as total annual sales for the entire company, major product lines, current stock price, key people, mission statement, etc. Indeed, it is strongly recommended that you study these facts to avoid the embarrassment of knowing less about his own organization than the candidate!
Scare off candidates with bad manners
As you begin your search for qualified candidates, you will no doubt discover just how limited the supply of suitable people really is. Therefore, it is crucial that you do not inadvertently scare away the rare birds that you have managed to attract. Since you can’t really know who will turn out to be The Chosen One, each A job candidate should enjoy a pleasant and professional interview experience.
how many times in your own self Have you ever interviewed for a position, only to find that your interviewer didn’t schedule enough time to really get to know you, was constantly distracted by phone calls during the interview, or didn’t connect with you? How did that? your feel?
Whenever you schedule an interview, it’s in your best interest to make sure you set aside a reasonable amount of time in a quiet place where you and your candidate won’t be disturbed. If you create barriers that detract from the interview experience, such as phone interruptions and people at the door and an artificial shortage of time, candidates may be inclined to become your down for work, instead of the other way around.
Remember that the standards you set will be contagious. If you’re working through an assistant or coordinator to schedule interviews for you, make sure he or she knows that the candidate’s time and comfort level are just as important as yours. If you’re working through your HR department, make sure you communicate clearly and in a timely manner.
don’t make them wait
There is no greater turn-off, and there is no better way to scare off a good job candidate, than to be late for the interview. Candidates should not be forced to wait inordinate amounts of time for you to appear. This puts you and your organization in the worst possible situation.
As a staffing service provider, I have often been forced to make a sales call or two. On many occasions, I have waited too long for someone to pick me up at the front desk. But job candidates aren’t salespeople—they’re potential co-workers, and proper respect should be shown for their time.
There are precautions you can take to ensure that such delays are eliminated, and I advise you to exercise them all.
First, schedule interviews on days and times when you’re pretty sure there won’t be too much work. For example, if it’s a first interview and you’re the only person seeing the candidate, it might be best to pick a date when your boss is out of town.
Second, if possible, ask one of your colleagues to be available to take your place in case you are called out of the blue and unable to conduct the interview. Not many people plan to this level of detail, but finding a replacement available ahead of time can avoid a great deal of embarrassment.
Third, if you schedule a candidate to visit and then realize that they are likely to be late, you would choose to postpone the interview to another day, rather than risk the candidate having to sit there and wait. by you.
Finally, I have seen situations where a candidate has been scheduled to see five or six people in a row without interruption. (Is this an interview or a stress test?) I’ve also seen some senior level candidates invited into town for a full day of interviews and left to wander the streets alone for a long lunch. tell me now – would your Accepting a position with a company that takes up an entire day of your time and you don’t arrange for someone to have lunch with you? As Mick Jagger once said, have some courtesy and some taste.
Remember, there is just No There’s an endless supply of great talent to fit your job description, so treat each candidate with respect and you’ll shorten the dreaded hiring process by days and weeks.
Know your candidate
Time is at a premium for most people, but really, there’s no excuse not to review a candidate’s resume before the job interview. Candidates generally perceive this as downright rude. And who can blame them? As it did your How did you feel when you went to job interviews and the interviewer awkwardly glanced at your resume while trying to have a meaningful conversation with you?
Be sure to carefully study the resume prior to the candidate walks through the door. Circle strengths and inconsistencies, make comments in the margins, and prepare specific questions based on the resume. Indeed, pay as much attention to the summary previous to the interview how would you pay the real person during the interview.
Prepare now, waste less time later
In short, preparation is the key to a better and shorter candidate search.
- Prepare an accurate job description that can be used to evaluate candidates.
- Learn key facts about your organization from the top down, including its structure, financial performance, personalities, and policies so you can help candidates better understand your company.
- Prepare to provide a positive interview experience for candidates: Don’t interview in a location where interruptions are guaranteed
- Be on time for interviews.
- Arrange for someone to fill in for you in case you suddenly cannot make it to the interview.
- Get as familiar as you can with the resume previous to the interview
Do these things and everyone will be happy. Including you!