The hiring process can be very stressful. One of the first steps to hiring a new employee is the interview. And one of the most essential parts of an interview is preparation. It's not enough to just know what you want to ask or how you plan on evaluating responses - it's also essential that you know all about your company and position before interviewing someone who may become your newest colleague! Here are four questions you should be prepared to answer before you head in to interview a candidate.
First and foremost, you need to be able to accurately describe the job duties and expectations of the position you are hiring for. A sharp candidate will ask questions about what their daily tasks will entail. So be prepared to walk them through what a "day in the life" might look like if they were to get the job. And yes, this information should be outlined in the job posting, but if it's not, or if you've made changes since the posting went up, you'll need to update the candidate accordingly. Again, it's crucial to give the candidate a clear understanding of what the position entails, so there are no surprises down the road.
Tell them what it's really like to work for your organization, even if you can only share anecdotal information at this point. Be straightforward and speak openly about the challenges as well as the benefits. Certain questions should be answered before someone decides whether they'd be interested in working for an employer: Is there room for advancement? What type of culture does the workplace have? Are employees happy there? How long has the company been around, and how fast-growing is it? If you don't have all the answers, be sure to say so, and promise to follow up.
This question may seem like a no-brainer, but hiring managers need to be prepared to answer it too! Candidates will want to know what kind of company they're potentially joining and how their position would fit into the big picture. If you can explain how the department works and where this position would fall within that structure, it will help paint a clearer picture for the candidate. And again, if you're unsure or unable to provide an answer, let them know - hiring is a two-way street, and they should also feel comfortable with you as an employer.
Finally- and this is key - you need to know your company's hiring process inside out. You should know how long the hiring process will take, what specific steps are involved (including any tests or screenings required), and when decisions are typically made. This information will help set realistic expectations for candidates, and it also demonstrates that you're familiar with your hiring process and are confident in the decisions you make. Being prepared for an interview is essential, and that goes for both the hiring manager and the candidate. By knowing the answers to these questions, you'll be in a much better position to make a decision that's right for your company - and for the candidate too!