How many interviews is right for the business?

This is key to find a suitable turn around for both the business and your potential new recruits, having a too long winded interview process can be time consuming, costly and ultimately frustrating which could result in candidates going cold or taking an alternative position elsewhere, so we advise that a certain level needs to be thought out, ideally maximum two interviews, this would be the most optimum choice based on research, dependent on the role and what level of management need to be involved, any more would warrant a higher level role.

While the majority of candidates would turn down a job offer after a poor interview experience, 65% also say they would be put off by a lengthy process,  therefore, the length of time an interview process takes will affect a job seeker’s overall experience

Who Should Be Involved?

Line managers take a strong seat when it comes to the interview process, the direct reports is key as they will be working with the potential candidate, and therefore would need their input, it also gives great value to your management team and credibility, HR should also be involved as they look after the people and culture, so it is vital to get advice from that side of the table.

It is not always possible that potential candidates get to meet the teams they would be working with, however on final interviews it really is quite a nice touch that potential new recruits are introduced, both for the candidate and the staff they would be working with.

How can I plan the Job Interview Content?

It is your responsibility to ask the right questions that are specific to the position you are looking to fulfil in an appropriate and professional manner, to ultimately assess the suitability of the candidate, and showing good leadership and being inspiring about the business is key.

It really is important to make sure that the candidate has a full over view of the role and expectations, give them chance to talk about themselves and share relevant experience that is essential to the position.

Future candidates like to know what type of business that you are, what your mission is, culture and what your current staffing is like to work within, what is also important now more than ever is sharing company benefits and the full package that is offered.

Give them time to ask questions, and to talk about their history and what plans for the future they have, this has got to be in keeping also with your business model.

How long should a candidate await feedback?

Firstly, Shawthorpe believe in feedback for everyone that has attended every interview, if you went to a job interview wouldn’t you like to receive timely feedback? Of course you would! Even if it is a no, feedback is imperative not only for the candidate but for the business, your reputation can be affected, if a candidate has spent time to come and be interviewed the least you can do is provide the feedback.

Ideally within 4 days we say is ideal any longer or no feedback at all can be very frustrating, some candidates receive a phone call, we highly recommend this as they may have some feedback their end, but ultimately it’s just more professional and courteous

Our Recommendations

We have outlined some recommendation, that we feel are key to a structured interview process:

  • It is important to put a candidate to the test in an interview, however being overly aggressive or unfriendly is likely to do more harm than good. Similarly, lateness is also interpreted by interviewees as rude. As a result, it is important to be punctual and ask engaging and relevant questions in a polite manner.
  • It is vital that you prepare for the interview as much as the candidates, it is best practice to fully read a candidates CV in detail and ask specific questions based on their experience. This will also help when you come to provide feedback.
  • The interviewer must have sufficient knowledge of the role to ensure any questions asked by the candidate can be answered and discussed within the interview, the more information you share regarding the business and role, this will provide confidence to the candidate of the role they are being interviewed for.
  • Ensure that you complete a full brief between the interview and department, and explain what happens next, be clear and concise.  Allowing a second person into the process will prevent any knowledge gaps, reduce the need for further interviews and provide a well-rounded candidate experience.
  • Ask a range of open-ended questions to draw the candidate out and allow them to talk
  • Interview, but also sell the company and its benefits
  • Prepare questions specific to the individual candidate before the interview
  • It really is key to make sure that the knowledge, understanding and respect are key in the interview process, the position and the company are among the most important attributes in an interviewer.
  • Never make an offer during the interview, overpromise, or commit to something undeliverable
  • Make sure you give a realistic timescale for feedback / next stage process.