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Here’s How to Structure Your Interview Process to Maximize the Chances You’ll Make the Right Hire

Source |Themuse .com  |  BY:Mellssa Suzuno

Making a new hire requires a lot of time and effort—which is no big secret if you’re a recruiter! But it’s not just recruiters dedicating their resources to hiring: Everyone from hiring managers and potential team members to senior leaders and receptionists can be called in to participate in some aspect of the interview process. Yet for an activity that touches so many people, interviewing is not always given the respect it deserves.

Some interviewers treat the entire process with disdain, as a waste of time that could be better spent doing almost anything else. Others might not be so openly against interviewing, but they treat their time with candidates as simply a chance to chat and casually discuss work history or common acquaintances. And yet others walk into the interview room with no game plan whatsoever, figuring that they’ll just wing it or let the candidate guide the conversation.

These approaches to interviewing aren’t just ineffective—they also lead to negative candidate experience , tarnish your employer brand, and decrease your offer acceptance rate.

But it doesn’t have to be this way.

The key to maximizing your hiring success is to implement a structured interview process . This involves outlining exactly what you’re looking for before you even write the job req and creating a framework for each step of the process so that every person who’s involved knows exactly what the purpose of the session is and which criteria they should be evaluating a candidate against.

Want to learn the basics of setting up a structured interview process? Read on for a simple three-step framework to help you get started.

Step 1: Define Who You’re Trying to Hire

The first step of setting up a structured interview process is really understanding and defining the role. Going through this process helps ensure that recruiters and hiring managers are aligned, which reduces chances of confusion and miscommunication further on in the process.

Start with the basics: the role name, the department, and who the person will report to. Then be sure to consider the business objectives of making this hire. How will this person contribute to your company’s bottom line? Finally, consider what you expect the person to accomplish in their first year in the role.

Step 2: Decide How You’ll Evaluate Candidates

Once you’ve defined what the role looks like within your company, you can decide how you’ll evaluate the candidate. It might help to begin with a few general categories like basic requirements (e.g., visa status, location), necessary hard and soft skills (project management, proficiency in a particular software), and hiring manager preferences (autonomy, communication style).

Next, you’ll want to define the hiring criteria for this particular role. In other words, what are the required skills, personality traits, and qualifications someone would need in order to accomplish all the things you set out in step 1? Some companies, like Oscar Health, really dive in here to define the “success drivers” for a particular role, looking at the key characteristics that indicate a candidate has a high probability of success. (Read more about Oscar’s approach here .)


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