The job interview traditionally provides potential employers their only opportunity to get a glimpse of what a job candidate has to offer. To reduce the likelihood of making a hiring misstep, interviewers should exercise care and ensure that they cover the topics of major importance about which they must gather information before making a hiring decision. If you are hosting a job interview, make sure that your question list is varied and that you plan to query each candidate about an assortment of important issues.
In fields where set educational requirements exist, it is important that you ask about education early in the interview. If you discover that a candidate lacks the education necessary for the position, you can immediately eliminate the candidate. Instead of simply relying on the resume to give you information as to the candidate's educational experience, ask the candidate about the listings, inquiring as to how the education prepared him for the position.
Even if the candidate you are considering has never worked in the specific field for which you are hiring, she will likely have some sort of experience to recommend her. By asking about her work experience, you can get a better idea of her track record and develop a deeper understanding of how she has performed in the past, as this can be an indicator of how she may perform in the future.
Hiring a candidate who is eager to advance in the world of work can prove advantageous, as this person will likely be more self-motivated for success than a candidate who lacks these goals may be. Ask your candidate about his overall career goals as well as how this position will help him achieve these goals.
Though you will fill the bulk of the interview with asking questions, you should provide the candidate with some information as well. Explain to the candidate what responsibilities she can expect to encounter if she gets the job. By giving her this information and asking her if she feels capable of tackling these responsibilities, you can get a better picture of her preparedness for the job in question.
When you fill your position, you will certainly have a list of expectations for the new hire. To ensure that your candidate can live up to these expectations, give him a preview of what these expectations are. Tell him, for example, if travel will be part of the position as well as what hours you would expect him to work. By giving him this information, you give him the chance to tell you if he can't meet these expectations, allowing you to remove him from consideration.