2 June 2018
Streamlining old interview methods for the 21st century
interview

Employment methods have changed little over the last 50 years. One factor within the process that seems to be written in stone is the interview process. If you are a job searcher than you can expect to be interviewed at some stage or another. This all seems very strange as recent statistics in a survey by the University of Michigan clearly show that traditional job interviews are poor indicators as to how the candidate is likely to perform when actually in post.

Popular types of interview

There are various ways types of interview which are designed to ferret out whether the candidate is perfect for the vacancy:

  1. Traditional structured interview. This is the formal interview we can all imagine where the interviewer drills the interviewee about tasks on the job description.
  2. Unstructured interview. This is a very casual meeting with candidate and management. It is designed to understand more clearly how the interviewee ticks rather than concentrating on concrete skills and qualifications. It is more likely to be used with management and executive posts.
  3. Video Call. This is more likely to be used when there is an issue with distance – where someone is wishing to locate and work in a different country for instance.
  4. Interview panel. More heads asking questions allows more ground to be covered from different angles and shares responsibility of the final choice.

But the traditional interview appears to be failing in the most important areas. In the majority of cases, the recruiter is not trained to use the platform to the best advantage and subsequently only has old tried and tested methods to use – questions are not specifically customised to the individual sitting in front of them.

New innovative interview techniques

The survey also highlighted some brand-new techniques hiring managers can use to enhance recruitment results. Professionals are now turning to digital tools to help them focus on practical aspects of the process.

New assessment apps

For instance, the huge Wall street company “Citi” now relies on a 20-minute digital application called Koru7™ to assess a candidate’s soft skills. This tool is innovative in that a profile is created based on the top-performing employees at Citi. The results of each job searcher is compared to the profile of the cream of the crop in the company.

interview

Welcome to the audition

Another innovative idea for the recruitment process is “Job auditions”. This may sound just like another name for recruitment, but it is more than that. What better way to see how a candidate copes with a job than watch them actually doing it?

The company “Citadel” designed auditions where students had to solve problems with data. The recruiters meanwhile watched them work and used a standard framework from how they processed the task in hand to how they worked in teams and whether they showed leadership capabilities. The managers found at the outcome of the experiment that this method which was focused on performance rather than interview answers helped to reduce interview bias.

Focusing on soft skills

Casual interviews can give much more of an insight into an individual’s soft skills and also how they are likely to behave naturally. However, the company “Charles Schwabb” has been taking that idea one step further by creating an element of adversity into the mix. For instance, at one breakfast meeting a candidate was invited to, the interviewer messed up the orders to see how the individual would respond. Often called behavioural interviews, by default, they can be a bit sneaky and not to everyone’s taste.

A virtual interview?

Virtual Reality has so far sat firmly in the realms of entertainment. But the Lloyds banking Group are using it as a great assessment tool within the whole of their interview process. Candidates in the final phase of the interviews  are evaluated using a virtual reality platform where they move freely within a virtual scenario and manipulate tasks tracked by the hiring executive. Again, this assesses real skills in real time and can be used to mimic tasks candidates will be confronted with.

All these new tools and techniques offer new ways to find that perfect candidate. There is clearly more onus on assessing interviewees when they are completing tasks in situ. But as digital tools become integral to analysis and assessment we can look forward to a whole host of new ways to recruit in the future.

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