5 Techniques for Effective Interviews

Interviewing can be considered an art form; conducting a solid interview with a qualified candidate is an imperative step in the recruitment process.  A good interview is similar to peeling an onion; you have to go through the layers to determine if the candidate is the right fit for your company, and if your company is the right fit for the candidate.  Keep in mind, the preliminary interview should be conducted in the form of a phone screening and no more than 30 minutes long..

  1. Get To Know Your Candidate

This step is important as it builds a relationship, sets the stage for the rest of the interview and helps the candidate be more at ease.  You’re also quickly able to identify on a basic level whether or not the candidate is a good fit for the position.  Throughout the interview, you’ll also want to use your candidates’ name at least 3 times.

  1. For an interview to be successful, you must build a rapport with your candidate
  2. Explain who you are and find out about them
  3. Ask why they are looking to leave their current position (or why they left their last position)
  4. Identify how much money they are currently making (or were last making)
  5. Do a basic walk through of their resume


  1. Discovery

This step allows you to dig deeper and get to know the candidate on a deeper level.  This will also be a valuable tool when it’s your turn to sell the candidate on your opportunity/company.

  1. Discover what they love about their current (or last) position and what was missing
  2. Find out what they truly want in their next opportunity
  3. After they give you this information, be sure to repeat back to them what they’re looking for to ensure you’ve understood what they’ve said (this will also help to build trust)


  1. Sell, Sell, Sell!

This step is absolutely mandatory.  Now that you’ve identified the candidate is a good fit for your opportunity, you have to make sure your candidate understands why they should be excited to work for you.  With unemployment at an all-time low, today’s candidates have developed a “what’s in it for me” mentality. In his job market, the best candidates pick you, you don’t necessarily pick them.  Throughout your pitch, you want to get the candidate so excited, they see it’s an opportunity they can’t pass up!

  1. Sell why your company is unique
  2. Talk about your corporate culture
  3. Explain the non-monetary benefits
  4. Talk about some unique perks that will get the candidate ready to move forward
  5. Remember to use the information you learned in your Discovery to help make the opportunity/company irresistible


  1. Call to Action

This step is important as it sets the precedent for your ongoing relationship.  If you are clear with your expectations and what the process is like, you have a better likelihood to keep these candidates.  This minimizes the risk of a candidate “flaking out”.

  1. Create a Call to Action and clearly articulate the next steps
  2. Ask the candidate how they prefer to be reached
  3. Make sure to find out how quickly you can expect a response if you reach out
  4. Make sure they understand that if they’re hired anywhere else, or if another opportunity presents itself they are to reach out to you promptly
  5. Explain how the process will go on your end/give them an idea as to when they can expect feedback
  6. Ask the candidate if they have any questions, making sure you’ve made everything clear
  7. Let the candidate know they’ll be receiving a follow up E-Mail from you within the next few minutes, and urge them to reach out should they have any other questions


  1. Follow Up

This step is a great way to measure the candidate’s interest in the position.  It is also a way for you to have a paper trail of what you spoke about.  At times, you may be interviewing any number of candidates, so this is a great way to be able to remind yourself about the candidate/what you discussed/what position they are being considered for

  1. Promptly after you speak with the candidate, send them a brief E-Mail going over what you discussed. Make sure to reiterate WHY they are good for the company, and why your company is great for them.  Include a brief summary of the perks you spoke about, and re-touch on what the process will be moving forward
  2. Ask the candidate to respond to your E-Mail as soon as they receive it (this is a great trick in determining the candidates writing skills and gauging how interested in the opportunity they are