Helping candidates prepare for interviews is a big part of what recruiters do each day.  However, in screening and qualifying candidates for a variety of positions, recruiters are usually also experts at how to interview too.

Some of the things we’ve previously discussed on our blog – like body language – apply to interviewers as well as interviewees.  However, there are also posts, such as questions interviewers can’t ask in an interview, that are just for you.

We decided to give interviewers a few more tips for finding the perfect candidate:

  • Prepare – Make sure you know ahead of time what you plan to ask the candidates and how you will describe your company and the role.  Don’t hesitate to bring notes and be sure to keep the tone positive.
  • Listen – Active listening is essential to getting the information you need. Make eye contact with the candidate and listen to their tone – as well as their words.

  • Ask open-ended questions – Questions that start with “How”, “Why” or “Can you explain” are great ways for candidates to tell a story about something they’ve done in the past. Stay away from “yes or no” questions that stop the flow of the interview.
  • Keep track of time – Always leave time in an interview to address any questions the candidate might have about your company and the role.  This will give you some insight about what’s important to them.
  • Arrange next steps – If an interview goes well and you think you could have the right person on the other side of the desk, don’t be afraid to tell them.  Enlighten them on your current interview process and set up a second interview with other hiring authorities or team members, if appropriate.  If the interview did not go well – or it’s too early in the process to determine a fit – let the candidate know when a decision will be made about next interview rounds or hire(s).

The right hire can make a huge difference to the success of your business; the wrong one can stop progress in its tracks.  A good recruiter can help you find candidates with the right credentials and experience, but only you can decide who is the best person to add to your team.

Wendy Stackhouse, Consultant for Artisan Creative