September 2007, Improving the Interview Process
Many organizations have a tendency to unwittingly undermine their own recruiting efforts, particularly when it involves attracting passive candidates. Their best intentions often go awry because inexperienced, inept or rude interviewers make a negative first impression, one which many times cannot be salvaged.
Among the sort of behaviors that adversely affect job seekers' willingness to work at a company are interviewers who are aloof and act as if they have no time to talk, withholding information about a position, turning an interview into a cross-examination, interviewers showing up late or appearing unprepared and asking questions unrelated to job skills.
An interview can quickly go from being a mutual exchange of information to a clash of personalities if both parties are not prepared and respectful of one another. Many times there is a wide gap between what the interviewers think candidates are looking for and what would actually motivate them to become applicants for the position.
The interview is not only a crucial assessment touch point in the recruiting process - it's an important marketing and branding opportunity. Amid today's shrinking candidate pool, successful interviewers will quickly determine the marketing messages that resonate with each individual candidate and reinforce those messages.
It is vitally important that companies invest the time and resources in making their interview process productive, efficient and results oriented. Hiring managers should be trained on interview techniques, proper behavior and on how they can be company advocates for attracting the right people. As front line participants in the war for talent, not only hiring managers, but, everyone involved in the recruiting process must be armed with the right tools to achieve successful results.