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Eight best practice tips for successful interviewing

by , 11 July 2013
The objective of an interview is to evaluate, exchange information and establish if there's a fit between your company and the job candidate. as important for the candidate to assess if your company is right for him, as it is for you to assess his suitability. Use these eight best practice tips to ensure conduct an interview effectively.

Staffing your company inexpertly won't only result in your hiring 'bad apples' but, chances are, you'll also breach the provisions of the Employment Equity Act in the process, warns the Practical Guide to Human Resources Management.

So ensure you develop the expertise to conduct an interview effectively and make the right recruitment decisions upfront.

The legal recruitment process from A-Z

With Fleet Street's new reference guide, Recruitment: The Complete Guide, you can ensure every step of your recruitment is legal and effective. Yes, you might have a list of questions you ask in interviews and another company policy that tells you how to ensure effective induction...but now you can refer to just one guide for recruitment from A-Z.

Recruitment: The Complete Guide will give you practical advice, tools, checklists and samples that cover every single step of recruitment.


Use these eight tips to conduct effective interviews

Tip 1: Treat each candidate as a guest. Don't appear as the enemy, but as an adviser and counsellor. Although this is an investigation, you should conduct the discussion in a friendly, businesslike manner. Even if you don't like the person, he should leave the interview motivated and excited about the job you may offer him.

Tip 2: Conduct gap analysis. Are there holes in the candidate's employment history? Find out why.

Tip 3: Make copious notes. This'll help you remember the details of the interview, particularly if you're interviewing a number of different candidates on any given day.

Make sure you inform the candidate that you're jotting down his responses. He may think you're making notes about weaknesses you've uncovered, or that you have 'caught him out'. This is counterproductive and could cause a great deal of unnecessary stress for him.

Tip 4: Avoid asking personal questions. Firstly, it's illegal, but it's also unprofessional.

Tip 5: Assess the salary expectation. You don't have to discuss remuneration during an interview, but you can ask the applicant to supply a pay slip as verification of what he earns.

You're only required to give details of the salary when you make an offer to the applicant. By asking for proof of his salary, you can establish whether his expectations are realistic or not and this could possibly enable you to offer a lower salary than you originally expected to pay.

Tip 6: Discuss the job spec and requirements. Both you and the candidate should ask lots of questions. From your perspective, ask for examples of situations where he's done similar work.

Tip 7: Investigate his personality type. Some employers prefer extroverts, others enjoy the quiet type. Asking open ended questions is the key to understanding the personality you're dealing with.

Ask for examples of previous successes, for example, meeting deadlines, handling stressful situations, difficult customers. You can say: 'Give me an example where you…

Tip 8: Close the interview. You must allocate a time limit and stick to it. Whether the candidate is suitable or not, close the interview on a pleasant note. Ask 'Is there anything else you'd like to ask?' Inform him that you'll give the application much thought and give him a time line when he should hear from you.

Use these tips to ensure you conduct interviews with success and recruit the right person for your business.

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