How to organise the right interview environment for the candidate

By Charlie Knight |


Let me start with a story; a few weeks ago I was sitting in the office of a major Telecoms company and there were various people coming and going in the cafe. I asked one of the managers I was meeting where they conducted interviews for their candidates. I hoped to hear that they would be held in a private area but due to lack of space and demand for meeting rooms (something we hear everywhere) some were conducted right in that very café where we were sitting. I looked around and noticed what I thought was an interview (one person in a suit and tie clutching what appeared to be a CV and the other dressed down): it was a busy Wednesday afternoon and there was lots of noise, distractions and other unwanted attention.Now for some they may feel this is acceptable but for others they may feel this is not what is expected at a formal interview stage.

Here are a few tips for clients to ensure a successful interview environment for potential hires.

  • Book a room in advance to ensure you have somewhere quiet and confidential
  • If possible go and greet the candidate yourself in reception when they arrive and make them feel as welcome as possible. Some small talk to break the ice and make them feel at ease always helps
  • Don’t be late for the interviewee. There is no excuse for latest for the candidate and there is no excuse for you being late. I’ve seen managers with big egos who think they are above everyone else and as so busy believe it’s acceptable to keep candidates waiting. Well it’s not and you’re not only damaging the chance of that candidate joining but your damaging your company’s brand which you represent.
  • Always offer them a glass of water, tea of coffee before starting. Sounds basic but make sure there is cups/glasses available in advance. Nothing worse than being offered coffee in an old chipped mug
  • Make sure you have the job spec and a copy of their CV in front of you and you’ve actually spent time reading it in advance; not as you go
  • Be prepared to answer some questions on why you joined the company and why this candidate should consider joining you; not some air fairy answers (like were a global company growing really fast) but some real concrete reasons to join that will benefit the candidate
  • Have a structured interview process that you follow with each candidate where possible and prepare questions in advance you want to ask
  • Set expectations for the length of interview at the start so it doesn’t drag on for both you and the interviewee
  • When finished ask if they have any questions they want to ask you
  • Turn your mobile off and show respect to the interviewee by not answer your call while on the interview (I’m amazed when candidates tell me this happened in the interview!)
  • Ensure every candidate works out feeling like it’s the best interview experience they have every had even if the role is not suitable for them. They will be talking to others about their experience with you

We’d love to hear your own experience of an interview either as a client or a candidate

Source: Vine 16

Charlie Knight

Written by Charlie Knight

Charlie has 3 years experience in digital marketing, helping B2B technology companies grow their businesses through inbound marketing before joining Vine Resources as Content Marketing Manager. In his spare time, Charlie enjoys travelling and the great outdoors, and he recently hiked from Mexico to Canada for charity.


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