Interview Guidelines for Hiring Managers

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Interview Guidelines for Hiring Managers

As you prepare for an interview, there are many factors to consider. Interviewing best practices, legal considerations, CX (candidate experience), candidate selection and evaluation, the interview questions that you'll be asking, and what tools you need to gather the right insights to make great hiring decisions - just to name a few. Having great hiring processes in place will eliminate overwhelm and allow you to make top-notch decisions and attract the best candidates.

When it comes to interviewing guidelines, hiring managers should keep a few considerations in mind:

1. Use objective criteria: When evaluating job candidates, avoid any bias or personal opinion. Instead, use a standardized set of questions and answers that will allow a candidate to showcase their skills, experience, and problem-solving abilities in real-time. Hiring manager interview questions and answers will be covered later in this article.

2. Evaluate candidates in a consistent manner: All of your interviews should follow the same format, with the same questions, and measures, and be scored by the same criteria. This will ensure fairness and accuracy when evaluating candidates’ qualifications and fit for a role.

3.  Listen for what's being said, and what's not. I like to assess a candidate as much on what they say as what they avoid saying. It is also important to pay attention to body language, ask follow-up questions, and make sure that your assessment of the candidate is based on more than just one meeting. This is one thing that interview intelligence software can do far better than humans.

4.  Always build rapport first. Before diving into the nitty-gritty of an interview, I like to take a few moments to get to know the job candidate. This helps build trust and set the tone for a more relaxed, in-depth conversation. The fastest way to do this is to find icebreakers from their social media profiles and resumes that will open the door to a genuine conversation.

5. Lastly, always follow up with the candidate. A good hiring manager should always be transparent and give feedback. If a candidate has been rejected, thank them for their time and point out areas that can be improved upon. You never know when that person may be a great fit for another role down the line!

These five are just a few of the interview guidelines you should consider making cornerstones of your hiring process.

Interview Guides for Hiring Managers

Pillar created a simple interview guide for hiring managers called, "The Ultimate interview Checklist for Hiring Teams." This guide is tailored to help hiring managers identify the right candidate for their job openings and equip them with the tools they need to make great hiring decisions.

Beginning with pre-interview planning which includes:

  • Title - outline the job title, where it will be based, and sell it! 
  • Who You Are - about your organization and why someone would choose your company over another (purpose, values, etc.) 
  • The Role - the main purpose of the role and how it fits within the team and the wider business
  • Their Responsibilities - provide more detail about what they will be doing and use strong verbs to generate excitement and promise
  • About Them - explain what you’re looking for in your ideal candidate from both a technical and interpersonal perspective 

The guide then moves onto the actual interview process and covers:

  • Preparing for Interviews - Make sure you’re ready with all the materials, questions, and other tools needed to properly assess a candidate.
  • Conducting the Interview - Create a warm but professional atmosphere and ask relevant questions. 
  • Gauging Candidate Fit - Use data-driven evaluation criteria to assess each candidate objectively.
  • Following Up With Candidates - Acknowledge the candidates for their time and effort, even if they are not selected for the role.

The Ultimate Interview Checklist is a helpful tool that will ensure you go through all the necessary steps in your hiring process. From sourcing the candidate and leading you all the way through each step to the offer, this checklist can serve as the basis for your hiring manager interview training internally. This resource and many more are available to our customers and can help you make data-driven hiring decisions with confidence.

Interview Guidelines for Interviewers

So now that you have a hiring process in place, how do you actually conduct the interview? The best interviews begin with stellar preparation. Interviewer preparation before the interview includes a review of the job description, resume, portfolio, and any other relevant candidate information.

When meeting with the candidate, it is important to create a comfortable environment while still adhering to an organized structure. This means setting out clear expectations for the interview at the beginning and having talking points that cover both sides' objectives. It is also important to be attentive and actively listen.

When asking questions of each candidate, it's vital that you follow a few basic interview guidelines for interviewers. First, ask open-ended questions rather than yes/no to draw out information from the candidate. Semi-structured opened ended questions allow the candidate to express their thoughts, ideas, and opinion. Second, try to avoid leading questions—these will bias the candidate's answer. Thirdly, ask questions that are relevant to the role and your organization.

By using this form of questioning,  you'll be able to stay consistent across all of your interviews and identify which areas the candidates excel in, what they’re passionate about, and their thought processes when tackling difficult challenges. Another question that will help you understand whether they're a good fit for your organization or not is:

"Close your eyes and picture us celebrating your 10-year anniversary with our company, where would have to be to reflect on that time and say that this was the best decade of your life?"

By asking this type of question and listening carefully to the answer, you'll get insight into their desired career path, and the candidate’s values, passions, and motivations. You can also use these questions like this to identify whether they're a good cultural fit for your organization.

Interview Guide Template for Hiring Managers

In addition to the checklist and guidelines listed above, what will help you create an excellent CX (candidate experience), and how do you put that into an interview guide that your entire team can follow?

Creating a comprehensive interview guide template for hiring managers internally is essential to ensure that the same standards are applied across all of your interviews, and allows you to develop consistency in your hiring process. This guide will define expectations for each step of the interviewing process, including resume review, phone screening, onsite interviews, candidate scoring, reference checks, background investigations, and any additional assessments required for your roles.

Interview training for hiring managers that is organized and thorough will help ensure that every candidate receives not only the best experience but one that's true to your company's values. It should also spell out what your organization’s interview process looks like, how to make sure all questions are legal, and compliant with EEOC regulations, and how to provide feedback to candidates on whether they move forward in the interview process or not.

Additionally, it should cover topics such as conducting virtual interviews, tools, and technology, making sure the team is following fair hiring practices, and how to create an inclusive environment where every candidate feels welcomed, respected, and even celebrated. By outlining the steps of the interview process clearly and providing thorough training on how to use interview intelligence software, and conducting candidate interviews, your hiring managers will be better prepared and you can ensure that you’re bringing in top talent while creating a positive experience for all applicants.

Behavioral Interview Training for Hiring Managers

Behavioral interviewing is one of the most popular ways to assess a potential hire's experience and skills. By definition, behavioral interviewing is a style of questioning that focuses on the job candidate’s past behavior in order to predict their future performance. This method of interviewing is an efficient way to identify the right candidate for your organization and determine which candidates are more likely to be successful in a role based on their previous experiences.

Behavioral interview training for hiring managers is vital to ensure that each candidate gets the opportunity to showcase their skills relevant to the role. This type of training should include a review of interview techniques, how to ask effective behavioral questions, best practices for candidate engagement, and how to create a positive environment. The goal is for hiring managers to be comfortable with the process and confident in their ability to evaluate candidates effectively.

Behavioral interviewing techniques should be tailored to the job title, and focus on uncovering a candidate’s hard and soft skills, knowledge of the company and industry, problem-solving skills, attitude, preferred work environment, and more. To reach their peak interviewing potential, hiring managers should have an arsenal of questions prepared that are designed to get at the heart of each candidate's potential abilities, and Pillar has over 1000 of these in each of our customer's instances to help guide them through the hiring process.

If you're currently building an interview process and would like to see how dozens of our customers in SaaS, I.O.T. Healthcare, and even VCs have saved time, and money, and lowered their employee turnover by more than 50% in the last 12 months, schedule a demo to see how Pillar can help your organization reach its hiring goals.