Interview Photo

by Pete Tosh
Founder, The Focus Group

Effective Hiring Begins with the Interview

Few leaders would argue with the idea that the Recruiting, Interviewing, and Selection process significantly impacts their organization’s productivity, customer satisfaction, growth, and profitability. Organizations need quality candidates and they need to know how to identify those candidates who have the competencies that meet the job requirements.

Effective hiring begins with the interview. Poor quality interviews produce poor results. In his book, How to Pick the Right People, William Swan makes this statement:

“The typical interview, conducted by untrained interviewers, is often no better than chance at predicting how an applicant will perform on the job.”

Far too frequently, interviewers follow their own subjective approach with candidates. The results may not correlate with the requirements of the position. A few examples:

  1. The Eyeball InterviewI knew the minute I saw her she couldn’t handle the job.
  2. Friendly ChatWe had a pleasant experience talking about sports, the weather, and mutual acquaintances.
  3. Random Questions (with no job specifications in mind) – He seems to have a work ethic, but I don’t know if he can drive a forklift.

Here’s the point.  The effectiveness of the Recruiting, Interviewing, and Selection process can be no greater than the quality of the interviews themselves. Interviewers should follow a proven methodology for obtaining relevant information from applicants and assessing it – interviewers need to know what to look for and how to gain the information they need..

If we don’t know where we’re going, any road will get us there.

Since it’s a natural human tendency to like applicants who are like us, it’s important for interviewers to begin with a thorough understanding of the position’s specifications. As obvious as this seems, some managers fail to take the time to identify the specific job criteria needed to be successful in the opening.

The objective of an interview is to identify a candidate who can and will effectively perform the job and fit into the organization. Effective interviewers use a methodology that is designed to evaluate key competencies and attributes in three areas:

  1. Can Do’s –  the competencies needed to carry out the job’s responsibilities: the required skills, abilities, and types of experience.
  2. Will Do’s – what candidates need to be willing and motivated to do:  travel, work shifts, initiate sales calls, etc.
  3. Fit Factors – the ability to work cooperatively with his or her manager, co-workers, customers, and others.

Getting the right folks on your team begins with a strategic interview process. Join us on May 13 for Strategic Interviewing and Selection: Getting the Right Folks on the Team, the first workshop in Georgia Employers’ Association’s 2016 HR Certificate Series. Click the link for registration information to learn more about the workshop and the series.

Free Webinar – May 10

Whether you’re new to human resources or an HR veteran, GEA’s 2016 HR Certificate Program offers a great opportunity to sharpen your skills and learn new techniques and strategies. Register now and join Pete Tosh and David Whitaker for an overview webinar that will help you pick the workshops that will benefit you the most.