Understanding the dos and don’ts of a successful interview helps you conduct more productive conversations. This helps the interview process run smoothly.

Conducting a successful interview helps you learn about a candidate’s knowledge, skills, and experience that are relevant to the role. You also can share the job duties and responsibilities, expectations, work environment, and other relevant details. This increases the likelihood of finding the most qualified candidate for the role.

Follow these guidelines to understand and implement the dos and don’ts of a successful interview.

Interview Dos

  • Focus on the Candidate: Let the candidate talk about their skills, experience, accomplishments, and fit with the position. This helps them become comfortable and emphasize their qualifications.
  • Prepare Questions: Ask the candidate about the information listed on their resume. Talk about how these details correspond with the job description. Also, focus on the candidate’s communication skills, passion for the role, and fit with company culture. These elements impact success in the position and organization.
  • Vary your interview questions: Ask candidates the same questions for the same role. This helps accurately compare each candidate’s performance with the other candidates. You can personalize the follow-up questions to gather more information about a candidate’s background.
  • Let the candidate ask questions: Find out which topics the candidate wants more information on. For instance, asking about development, training, and leadership indicates interest in long-term growth. However, asking about vacation time or minimum weekly hours implies an interest in earning a paycheck rather than adding value to the organization.
  • Take notes: Write down details about the candidate’s questions and answers. Include keywords about the central themes discussed. You can review your notes to refresh your memory when making hiring decisions.

Interview Don’ts

  • Make inappropriate small talk: Avoid asking questions about culture, age, religion, race, relationships, or other personal information. These topics are unrelated to the position and can create bias in the hiring process. Instead, discuss neutral topics such as the weather or whether the candidate easily found the interview location.
  • Ask random questions with no purpose: For example if you were a crayon what colour would you be?
  • Overemphasize the company’s needs: Make the interview about the candidate. You must ask relevant questions to determine whether the candidate is equipped to handle the job duties and responsibilities and fits with your culture. Overemphasizing your needs can “lead” the candidate to tell you what you want to hear.
  • Forget to mention the next step: Clarify what the candidate should expect after the interview. Include when they should hear from you by, whether another interview may be needed, or whether an offer will be made to the right candidate.

Do You Want Help with Your Interview Process?

For help finding the most qualified accounting and finance candidates in Winnipeg, include Mercer Bradley in your hiring process. Get started today!

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