Let’s say you’re sick, and the doctor gives you two options. If you choose Option One, you’ll get better in three days. If you choose Option Two, you’ll get better in 30 days. I’m guessing you’d pick the former option. When it comes to our health, we want the quickest fix possible.
The same can be true for the health of your interview process. While you may not be able to heal your entire interview process in 3 days, there are some easy things you can do to quickly improve symptoms. These solutions don’t take a ton of time, money or effort – but they’ll help you to streamline the procedure, get better results, and restore the health of your interview process.
1) Let Them Schedule It
You may have noticed that at McQuaig, we’re big advocates of Calendly. It helps us reduce the back-and-forth of scheduling meetings, and allows our clients to schedule a time that work best for them. You can use the same functionality for your interviews. Letting your candidates schedule the interview at their convenience eliminates unnecessary emails, and it also shows that you’re prioritizing a quality candidate experience. And with candidate experience being a big topic recently, this one little improvement can provide some major benefits.
2) Prepare Your Candidates
The other day, one of my clients was telling me a story about an interview in which she had trouble getting concrete examples of past behaviour from the candidate, even with probing. This made me think back to interviews in which I was the candidate, where I was completely stumped and couldn’t think of specific examples to answer the questions – despite all of my preparation. Of course, the candidate is expected to prepare for the interview, but you can help. If you let candidates know what kinds of questions they’ll be asked ahead of time, coupled with anything else that may be expected of them in the interview, the whole thing will go a lot smoother. If you need to see how a candidate thinks on their feet, I can see why trying to stump them might happen – but it won’t make them feel good, and it doesn’t help you to uncover relevant past experiences.
3) Make Them Feel Comfortable
This is a really easy one. It takes almost no time, money or effort to offer a candidate a coffee or a water when they come in for the interview, but it goes a long way in terms of hospitality. One of your goals as an interviewer is to make your candidate feel as comfortable as possible, so that they can answer questions to the best of their ability. Maybe they had to fight through awful traffic to get to the interview. Maybe they braved a torrential downpour to make it on time. Taking their coat so that don’t have to fumble with it, giving them a chance to go to the washroom before they sit down – these are just a few examples of simple ways to be courteous to your candidates, and it’s one of the quickest wins you can implement. Although it might not have the largest impact on the overall experience, it definitely contributes to a positive one.
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4) Develop Interview Guides
In customer success, we often talk about developing resources that can make our customers’ jobs easier. This same mindset can be applied to interviewers, using an interview guide. A checklist that reminds them to offer a beverage, standardized behaviour-based interview questions, examples of behaviour to listen for, rating scales and notes sections – these are all things that can help your team conduct better interviews. Not only that, it standardizes the process so that you can compare apples to apples when decision time comes. This is definitely the most involved quick-win on this list, but it doesn’t have to take a ton of time. If you already have the interview questions from previous searches, half the work is already done for you – it’s just about organizing them in a meaningful way.
Just like our own health, the health of your interview process can fluctuate over time. And if you’re feeling like your interview results might be a little under the weather, these four quick wins can help you get your process back up to a healthy operating level. Happy interviewing!