III

Structure Your Interview Process

Without a clear plan for every interview, things can get off track quickly. When employees are pulled in to conduct last-minute interviews with no preparation or guidance, the conversations tend to be more small talk than substance, and candidates end up fielding the same general questions over and over.

A structured interview process will ensure all your interviewers are on the same page, and will deliver the detailed candidate feedback you need to make the right decision.

Capparis Spinosa
  • Interview Planning

    Screen early, linger later

    Your application form should be structured to keep unqualified candidates out of your pipeline. For promising-looking applicants, a phone screen for key skills and personality traits is another helpful way to narrow your talent pool early on, letting you dedicate your in-person interviews and testing time to the candidates most likely to be hired.

  • Give every interview a specific purpose

    When each interview is focused on collecting a few specific points of information, interviewers know exactly what questions to ask, and what to look for in a candidate’s answers. Making every interview about a different set of skills or traits, means that, by the end of the process, you’ll have a complete picture of the candidate.

  • Create Interview Kits

    Put all candidates through the same interview process

    Every candidate should face the same questions and be scored on the same criteria. So when the time comes to evaluate the relative strengths and weaknesses of each candidate, you’ll be comparing apples to apples.

  • Standardize interview feedback

    To make smart decisions, you need consistent scoring. A standardized feedback rubric is the difference between having usable data and having a handful of anecdotes and gut feelings. Start with your hiring criteria and implement a company-wide scoring system for every interview. Be sure to keep it simple so everyone on your team can understand and use it. After each interview, get written feedback in the same form from every interviewer. Without that, you’re forced to decipher people's emails and notes. Or, worse still, work from memory.