We regularly offer advice to our candidates on how to thoroughly prepare for an interview and realise that for hiring managers the process also involves much preparation to be successfully conducted. You want to ensure you ask the right questions to gauge whether the applicant is a suitable fit for the role and also within your team and organisation, and this will not just happen by reading through the job spec and candidate’s CV a few minutes before they arrive to meet you.
Being aware of how to avoid roadblocks and pitfalls means you have the upper hand to get the most out of the interview, and ultimately fill the vacant role with the best candidate available to you as quickly as possible. Here are some of the key points we’ve summarised to ensure your interviewing process runs smoothly.
How to conduct an interview
Make it an interview, not an interrogation
A cold welcome, indifferent handshake and frosty atmosphere will leave a candidate feeling unsettled and disjointed, meaning it’s unlikely that he or she will reveal their core strengths.
Yes, it is important to keep the candidate on their toes; your questions should challenge them, and they should be going all out to prove why they are right for the role but the most effective interviews for all involved are the ones which foster a professional, supportive and challenging environment.
Don’t assume you’re in a position of strength
The Marketing & eCommerce job sector is currently highly competitive. Highly specific skillset and experience combinations are in demand and talented candidates are likely to be interviewing with multiple companies. It’s in your best interest to promote your company, your team and the role itself when you meet with them and remember that they’re “interviewing” you too.
“Talk me through your CV” is a great way to kickstart the interview
Allowing candidates to take you through your CV’s is an open-ended opportunity for them to start talking and highlighting the best of their experience, skills and personal attributes in 5 minutes. This gets conversations flowing and you’ll be able to gauge whether the person will be a fit for your team whilst making notes on how their skills and experience match the role you’re trying to fill. Don’t overlook the importance of this question before leaping into competency-based questions.
Don’t try and hire yourself
Be mindful that you are likely to warm to a junior candidate who reminds you of a less experienced version of yourself. You should be looking to build a well-balanced, diversified team so replicating mini versions of yourself is a big no-no. If in doubt, ask a colleague to sit in the interview with you to provide a contrasting opinion if required.
Don’t seek to destroy
A poor interview technique can destroy a good candidate and will not do much for your professional reputation. It’s imperative that you prepare for the interview thoroughly by ensuring you know what you are looking for, as the best interviewers tend to secure the best people.
Take time well before your meeting to plan and structure your interview, review the applicants CV and ask questions which link their experience to the role. Avoid generic questions as they tend to elicit generically rehearsed answers – rather push the candidate to express their motivations and what energises them in their professional role
It’s absolutely critical to provide constructive feedback to your recruitment consultant or directly with the candidate. Even if it is bad news, it is expected that you provide a reason why you feel the person is unsuitable for the role and thank the candidate for their time.
Lastly, do remember we are here to help. Because we’re a niche recruitment consultant specialising in Marketing, eCommerce and Product Management roles we have experienced consultants consistently matching highly skilled candidates with like-minded organisations.
If you are struggling to find the right candidate, give us a call to see how we can help you? Contact us now.