Getting to the Next Phase: 3 Interview Steps for Employers When Hiring

Structuring the interview process to find the perfect fit

 As the fundamental process by which companies maintain continuous inner growth, hiring successfully is imperative for all businesses. However, to some, acquiring new talent for any opening may seem like a painstaking process. By focusing on certain subtleties throughout the interviewing process, employers can be more confident that their efforts will truly be rewarded.

Throughout the course of an interview, whether it be days or weeks, certain tendencies will arise in each candidate,” says Michelle Joseph, talent acquisition expert and CEO of PeopleFoundry. “By becoming mindful of these characteristics and determining their potential benefit or detriment to your industry, you can mitigate the need to frequently replace employees.”

Michelle talks through each major interviewing phase and some of the key issues that may arise within them.

Phase One: Email Inquiry

Look out for form emails. In today’s job market, it is not uncommon for hopeful applicants to copy and paste general cover letters with an email regarding the open position. There are however, certain aspects to look for to ensure the inquiry is genuine and backed by bona fide interest.

A comprehension of the company’s core values and the requirements of the open position should be easily seen by the employer. However, this is very standard and can be found through a simple Internet search. Take interest in a candidate that takes an email inquiry to the next level by directly relating the company and the position back to his or her personal goals, experiences and passion in life. A candidate who is able to portray this level of effort for an opening email, deserves your due diligence in return. Once interest has been displayed on your end, see how and when the candidate responds. Persistence shows eagerness for the job and the timely response should radiate the same professionalism as the first email from the candidate.

Phase Two: Phone

Generally the next step in weeding down the candidate pool is to have a phone interview. To grow a business with the right people, professionalism should be expected throughout the process. Assuming a time has been set for the call, tardiness or answering the call in a bad place to talk are major causes for concern. Once the call is underway, listening for various verbal cues is going to be the strongest indicator of a candidate’s worth. Do not be deterred by the candidate sounding a little nervous. That can actually be viewed as a positive because it shows they are very interested in the job, as long as he or she is able to maintain composure throughout the call. Since there are no visual cues over the phone, listening to the comfort with which the interviewee discusses his or her own experiences and potential contributions to the role will serve as the best indicator.

The display of valuing someone’s time does not begin and end with being punctual to a scheduled phone call. Rather, after the phone call has been completed, a follow up email should be the expectation. Follow up emails are a driver of all other matters of business and the interviewing process is not the exception to that rule. A well-written and specifically appreciative follow up email within 24 hours of the phone interview is not too much to ask of someone who is attempting to join your team.

Phase Three: In Person

No matter the interview process, bringing a candidate in for an in-person interview is the final and most important step. Being able to attach non-verbal cues and body language to the evaluation formula is crucial for all employers. Having communicated with the potential candidate via email and phone, you should have an understanding of their personal goals. Keep in mind what responses they delivered in the first two phases. During an in-person interview, ensure that the candidate is not just repeating the prior responses and has come prepared with a more in depth understanding of the company and the position they seek. The deeper into the process you dive, the greater his or her aptitude for the role should be.

This stage of the process is last for a reason, it serves as an opportunity to peel back any final layers of the onion that only looking someone in the eye can accomplish. It all starts and ends with the handshake. To be taken seriously, a candidate needs to be confident in their first face-to-face impression all the way through shaking your hand before they head for the door. This is the most obvious spot where nerves can be seen and while again it is not a red flag for a candidate to appear nervous, the ability to push through those nerves and exude confidence is the mark of a good hire.

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