Preparing for the Interview Process
The interview process can seem like an inconvenience – a time consuming process that distracts from the core work at hand. As much as this may seem true, the interview process is an opportunity: a great way to find out a lot about your potential new addition and showcase your team and/or brand to someone outside of your business. Afterall, when you need to hire a talented person, you want to get it right the first time around and not have to go through it all over again in a few weeks’ time. You also want them to talk to others about their experience with your business – word of mouth is a powerful marketing tool! With that in mind, here are some helpful tips to help you get prepared for the process of an interview in a simple, yet mindful way.
Preparation is key to success
The most important part is taking out a little time to prepare. You do not need hours of preparation; you just need to get some of the basics sorted. Here are three things to think about during your preparation time:
- The panel
- The questions
- The technology
The Panel: Select your panel thoughtfully and brief them
Selecting a panel is important. It benefits your recruitment decision by adding different perspectives to the final hiring decision. You might want to consider 1 person from either of the groups below to add variability and perspective:
- Strong technical expertise
- Stakeholder representative
- Customer representative
- External representative
Try to aim for a minimum of 3 people in total for your panel. Once you have your panel, you want to make sure this is a simple process for them so give them a heads-up on what your expectations are. Here are some things to consider:
- How much of their time do you need?
- Can they contribute to the questions you will use?
- What technology will they need? For example, Zoom, Google Meet, Microsoft Teams etc.
- Do you want them to take notes?
- Are you all in agreement when focusing on the “essential” criteria and “desirable” criteria for the role?
- What is the format of the interview? What role do panel members play? Who does the introduction? Do you take turns asking the questions?
Interview questions are your tools to discovery. Being the expert in your area, you already know what you are looking for. The next step is to formulate your question well so that the person you are interviewing clearly understands what you are asking. When you ask a question, the response you get is usually dependent on how you formulate the question. Whilst there are many ways to formulate a question, behavioural questions have been found to be the most accurate predictor of future performance.
Here are some examples of behavioural questions:
Tell us about a time when you applied DevOps principles to a challenging project.
Describe to us how you have used MuleSoft as an integration tool in your last role.
These questions focus on the work they have done in their past roles, bringing their resume to life. Feel free to have some follow-up questions in mind, such as “tell us more about…” “what was your specific role in that?”
There’s nothing worse than having technical difficulties in the moment of an interview. It screams disorganisation and mistrust, all the negative impressions you do not want to give your prospective new addition, especially if you are in the IT industry. If you are holding your interview online for the first time here are some things you may want to do ahead of time: – Set up a mock calendar invite using your selected technology
Use an outside email address
Test it out with someone to make sure you both can hear and see one another.
Note: Video is essential unless you intend for it to be a telephone interview.
The best part of going through a preparation process is that once you have prepared, the following occurrences are a breeze because you know exactly what you need. Ultimately you and your panel will present as professional and purposeful, a desired representation for the talented candidate seeking to fulfil their vocation under your leadership.