Top 5 Interview Techniques to Find Top Talent
People are the driving force of any company - finding the right candidate for a role may dictate the future success of your business. There are dozens of interview techniques, ranging between traditional and unconventional, and knowing which is going to uncover top talent for your business can depend on a number of factors (such as your industry, specific business, and the type of role/position).
When interviewing, you can extremely flexible with location and style. Depending on the nature of the role, and your company culture, you may decide on a structured, unstructured, or semi-structured style of interview:
Structured: the interview is based on a predetermined set of questions. All candidates will be asked the same questions in the same order.
Unstructured: as the name suggests, conversation flows freely, and questions are asked spontaneously. This style tends to be an informal interview and allows you to see the authentic personality of the candidate as their answers can’t be rehearsed.
Semi-Structured: A hybrid of the two above, meaning that some questions are predetermined, and others arise naturally in the conversation.
These interview styles may be applied interchangeably to interview types, though some are more suitable for certain types of interview than others.
We have listed below a few of the interview types we have found to be most effective:
Individual, face-to-face interviews are, without doubt, the most popular technique and there’s a reason for that - they allow you to get to know the candidate, build a relationship/rapport with them, and read body language easier than any other type of interview. If you’ve already done telephone or video call and you want to take it to the next step, or you don’t have many people to interview, then one-to-ones are likely the best way to determine which candidate is going to be most suitable for your role.
The Telephone Interview
Old but gold (though we wouldn’t recommend this as a sole interview technique!). If you are fortunate enough to find that you have several suitable candidates with similar skill sets, holding telephone interviews is a fantastic way of narrowing down your shortlist. It gives you the opportunity to check any prerequisites for the role that may not appear on their CV (such as a full UK driver’s license or an enhanced DBS Certificate).
Telephone interviews are a great way to assess as to the confidence of the candidate, in addition to their conversational skills, telephone manner, and some indication of their personality. We believe that a conversation on the phone is enough for you to eliminate the timewasters.
Yes, they are super convenient, and they require minimal prep - there’s no need to book a specific space or set time aside for travel – but they don’t come without their cons. For example, you can’t read a candidate’s body language, your call may be interrupted by bad signal or background noise, and they often occur outside of work hours.
This kind of interview is time and cost-effective if you are busy and have a lot of candidates to get through. They may be a necessary step in your recruitment process, but they are also something that you can leave to your trusted recruitment consultant.
Video interviews allow you to interview a wider pool of candidates with minimal cost. They offer you the same positive benefits of a telephone interview with one added bonus: you can see the candidate to read their body language and presentation skills. Video adds a level of professionalism to the interview and candidates are less likely to be distracted as they are being watched (which also means that they are forced to speak naturally as opposed to reading from prepared notes). For long-distance candidates, holding video interview is the best way to determine a candidate’s suitability for the role without anyone having to commit to a long journey.
The only inconvenience to a video interview is finding a mutual platform to hold the call on, as not everyone has access to Facetime, Whatsapp, or Skype.
If you find yourself in need of a platform that is compatible with all smart devices and requires no downloads, sign-ups, or logins, then we can help… Gleeview is our very own video interview platform that we offer free of charge to our clients. Depending on which stage of the interview process you are up to, we can offer you:
- a dual-branded platform to hold video calls with candidates.
- solo interviews, where candidates can record themselves answering pre-agreed interview questions.
- candidate video shortlists and analytics.
If you would like more information about Gleeview, or the other unique services that we provide, please fill in the form below.
Used to assess a larger group of interviewees at the same time, assessment days are a fantastic way to make a more in-depth evaluation of a candidate’s suitability. Because you spend a longer time with each candidate, you can get a better grasp of their personality and whether they will be a good fit for your company culture. Assessment days give you a unique opportunity to spark some healthy competition between candidates and see how they will work in a team environment – an opportunity that no other interview type can provide. Hosting assessment days in your own office will also allow candidates to see the space they could be working in and meet other members of your team.
Hosting a Graduate Assessment Day is a fantastic way to find fresh talent. What's more, we are prepared to do all of the leg work for you; we will gladly provide the venue and refreshments, and will have consultants on hand to ensure you a stress-free hire. But don’t just take our word for it: take a look.
Face to face but with multiple interviewers, panel interviews will usually be either the sole or final step in the interview process. If multiple people need to meet the candidate before a decision is made, it makes sense to have all of the decision-makers in one room. Each interviewer will bring their unique perspective to the table, meaning that they prevent unconscious bias and hiring decisions can be made faster. If you’re going to hold a panel interview, we would suggest a structured or semi-structured interview and to have one person leading the interview. This will keep the interview on a steady track and avoid people talking over one another. The only downfall to a panel interview is that the candidate could feel a little overwhelmed/intimidated.
And no, we don’t mean a Shakespeare Monologue…
Whether it’s a trail shift or a multi-week trial period, a job audition will not only give you a clear indication as to how the candidate will perform in the role, but it will also expose them to the team and the company environment whilst giving them an insight as to what they are signing up for. Job auditions allow you to demonstrate your company’s real-life work environment and see how the candidate copes. This type of interview is especially effective for candidates who may have recently completed relevant qualifications but have yet to gain industry experience.
Observing candidates in this environment will show you that the candidate has the skills that they claim to have. It also gives the candidate a realistic sense of the role, the team, and the environment that they will be working in. Also, if you find yourself torn between two well-performing candidates, you can ask your staff for feedback.
There’s no right or wrong way to run an interview; each style and technique will have its pros and cons. Knowing which is right for you will depend on several factors unique to your business and the role itself. This is by no means a definitive list, but given that we are an established recruitment company, conducting hundreds of interviews a week, with centuries of combined experience, these are just a few of our recommendations.
If you would like a personalised consultation to determine the right recruitment process for you, please fill in the form below: