Interview Tips to Hire the Right Employee

Good help is hard to find… Sometimes we, as business owners, set ourselves up for failure by not asking the right questions during the interview process and not doing our due diligence to determine the credibility of a candidate. Try these five tips to help you hire the right employee.

  1. Make sure you have a specific job description for the position you are hiring.  There are many online resources that you can use to find generic job descriptions but make sure you tailor it to include everything you want the employee to be responsible for.  Bonus: if someone at your company is currently in the job position, ask them to review the description to ensure it is accurate.
  2. Once you have selected five to ten candidates to interview, do your due diligence before scheduling the interview.  First, you should check their references.  I know that many companies are not doing this because I have had several people list me as a reference on a job application and I haven’t received any communication.  By checking their references before the interview, you can save yourself some heart ache. The person may be a great interviewer but have a horrible work ethic.  Question to ask: provide the job description and ask reference to name three reasons why this candidate would be a good fit for the job.
  3. Next, contact their previous employer.  Legally, there are only a few questions that you can ask without violating privacy laws.  I suggest: Would you rehire this employee?  Also, verify that the job description on their resume matches with what the previous employer actually hired the employee to do.
  4. Google them. It is amazing what you can find out about people online.  It may seem like you are invading this person’s privacy, but you don’t want to follow them on Twitter or become their friend on Facebook, however you do want a snapshot of the person outside of the office.  Remember this person will be working for company, thus they will be an ambassador for your organization.  You don’t want to trust your brand to someone who doesn’t have any respect for their personal brand.
  5. During the interview, the majority of your questions should focus on the job description of the position that the candidate is interviewing for.  Ask for examples of their experience completing the tasks, ask them to describe some of their professional challenges or mistakes from the past… the answers to these questions along with your reference checks should give you some insight into the candidates credibility and ability to perform the tasks they will be assigned.

Many employers try to use the interview process to psychoanalyze their candidates.  This is not necessary.  Just ask for information that will give you information about their reliability, their credibility and their ability to perform the job they are being considered for.

Under federal law, you can not discriminate based a candidate’s age, race, sex, religion, national origin or disability.


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