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How to Structure a Job Interview

Recruiter sitting at a table across from Candidate. Talking to a recruiter is great for researching an organisation before joining them.

Hiring for a new role and wondering how to structure a Job Interview?

Or interviewing for a new role and looking for an insight into what to expect? Either way you’ve come to the right place. Here’s how to structure job interview!

Keep scrolling to read an excerpt from our free downloadable guide to interview structure!

So you’ve sourced your ideal candidates, well done! Now it’s time to get to know the face behind the resume.

A well-structured interview is crucial to making the interview process valuable to both parties.

It’s your opportunity to see beyond their experience and education and experience their interpersonal skills.

At the same time it is the candidate’s chance to meet the people who make the up the company and see if it is the right place for them to take the next step in their career.

This guide will teach you how to structure a job interview which allows you to get a real insight into the person who could be your next co-worker. It will also include some example scoresheets which you can use in your next interview.

 

Recruiter sitting at a table across from Candidate. Talking to a recruiter is great for researching an organisation before joining them.

1. Invitation and Interview Briefing

A good interview begins long before the questions get asked.

It’s important to make sure that all participants in the interview are across all the key 

details of the interview in advance of the interview date.

Do this by sending an interview invitation to all participants at the same time.

This should include;

Date, Time and Location of the Interview.

A high-level overview of what the interview will cover. 

For example, whether this will be a behavioural interview or a skills based interview or whether the candidate will be expected to present an 

example of their work or not.

You should also give them the option to respond if they require further clarity or need questions answered.

 

How to research a company before you join

2. Before you begin the Job Interview

Before you start your interview process make sure to decide upon; 

  • Where you want to interview candidates. 
  • Who will be conducting the interviews. 
  • If it’s a video interview what’s the best place to make the video call from.

You should also make clear what documents the interviewers or candidates should have with them.

This could be; 

  • Identification. 
  • A work sample. 
  • The company’s interview guide (this document!)

Preparing for a behavioural interview?

A first round interview is a more casual conversation between the candidate and the interviewers. By comparison a behavioural interview will generally follow a successful first round interview.

A behavioural interview focuses more specifically on the candidate’s past experiences, behaviours knowledge, skill and abilities by asking for specific examples of when he or she has demonstrated these skills. 

In a behavioural interview make sure; 

  • The interviewer asks each candidate the same questions, using the same phrasing, in the same order. 
  • The asked questions are created prior to the interview and have little room for variation. 
  • The interviewer is neutral but friendly. You do not provide any opinions during this interview. 
  • All candidates are evaluated on the same ratings scale.

How to structure a job interview.

3. Welcoming the Candidate

At the start of the interview it’s important to make a good first impression of yourself and your workplace. 

When you meet with the candidate for the first time make them feel comfortable so that they can be the most authentic version of themselves in the interview.

When greeting the candidate keep physical contact to a handshake.

You can learn more about reading interview body language in our hiring manager’s guide to interview body language.

At the start of the interview you should; 

  • Thank them for coming 
  • Tell them about the company, its history, the office space. Anything you wish to share which reinforces your company brand prior to the interview. 
  • Tell them about the job which they’re applying for. 
  • Share with them again what the interview process will be. 
  • Provide them with a glass of water or other refreshment. 
  • Check that they’re comfortable and ask them if they have any questions prior to the interview

How to structure a job interview. Active posture during a job interview

4. Asking Questions and commonly asked candidate questions.

To access our full guide on how to structure a job interview including free candidate scoring templates simply download it for free!

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Hiring Manager’s guide to interview body language.

Hiring managers guide to interview body language

When hiring for a new role, first impressions are everything. When we meet someone for the first time we make snap judgements about their assertiveness, friendliness, and appearance. Some of these judgements could be attributed to unconscious bias. But it is more likely that your mind is subconsciously picking up on the other person’s body … Read more

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