engage magazine issue 002 \\\\\\\'06 - Page 56

56 ATTRACT EMPLOYEES Recruitment Gloria Wyse advises small business owners on how to get the best results from the interview process How to conduct an interview STEP 1 - Preparation The interview process begins well before the interview day. When you write, email or telephone the applicant, inviting them to interview, give them as much information as possible about the structure of the interview in order to eliminate any ‘surprise’ factor. Let the candidate know what to expect, i.e. how long the interview will be, where it will take place, whether there will be more than one person involved in the interview including the interviewers job titles. If you plan to test the candidate, tell them what form this will take e.g. a numerical, typing, written, technical or perhaps ten minute presentation. If you plan to reimburse travel expenses let the candidate know upfront as the cost of travel can be a cause of concern to an unemployed individual. In order to ensure the interview is both smooth and professional, you really need to do your homework beforehand. Review the candidate/s c.v./application form, preferably the day before the meeting to acquaint yourself with the candidate’s history, and refresh yourself again, at least half an hour before the interview. Look at the skills and experience you requested in your job description and compare this profile to the candidate’s c.v. It is unlikely that it will be a perfect match, so prepare questions that seek evidence of the candidate’s ability to perform all aspects of the job, as advertised. It is also prudent to ask questions around any gaps in their education and employment history as this can give good insight into an individual’s resilience and personality. Make a note of the questions you wish to ask and leave enough space to write the answers underneath. Do not prepare hypothetical questions – you will always get a hypothetical answer. For example, if an interviewer asked me how I would deal with a building on fire, I would probably say “calmly move all occupants to safety, call the fire brigade and make an initial attempt to out the fire using one of the many fire distinguishers installed on the premises.” The reality is that I would probably Interviews can be a very stressful exercise for both the interviewer and the candidate. However, there are ways of alleviating the stress on both sides, by simply preparing yourself. If you are seeing more than one candidate it may be helpful to include a few generic questions so that you can compare the responses when it comes to decision making, engage ISSUE TWO 2006