Mastering the Interview Process
A lot of preparation and planning is involved in establishing and carrying out a successful candidate interview process. But in spite of the name - Interview Process - the first piece to examine is about laying the groundwork. Before you have candidates to review and need to prepare for the actual interviews, it's critical to make sure the first step is implemented, and it's one that occurs long before you schedule the first candidate's interview. It starts when you begin your search. You don't want to waste your time or the candidates' time, so before you begin taking a look at how you conduct the actual interviews - which we'll cover in a subsequent article - you need to first make sure you're getting the right people coming in the door.
The goal of the interview process is to help match the right candidate to the right position. To do that you need to have a full and complete understanding of what the position actually is. Many times people write and post a job vacancy listing based on what the person who was in that position was doing, or what the job description has always been in the past. But that isn't always the complete picture. Job duties change. New duties are added. New skills are needed. Oftentimes old skills aren't necessary anymore, either due to a shift in duties between employees or technological changes. Once you examine it well, you may be surprised to find that the position you are filling is quite different than what it used to be. And that can mean the need to find someone with different skills, experience, and goals.
Skipping this crucial step in the process will not only make interviewing candidates a challenge, but very possibly result in hiring someone who isn't the best fit for the position or your organization.
Once you've determined the actual needs for the position and have written an accurate description of your ideal next new hire, you can take the next steps in the process: posting the position and reviewing resumes. Skipping this crucial first step will not only make interviewing candidates a challenge, but may result in your hiring a candidate who isn't the best fit for the position or your organization.