How to Hire Long Term Employees
Part 3: The Interview
Interviews need to be more than a series of scored, one-way, closed questions. Employers also need to stop quietly assuming every candidate just can’t wait to work for them. Hiring managers who take long-term hiring seriously make a concerted effort in creating an open and reciprocal interview environment for their candidates. As discussed in the previous post, they also value the presentation of an attractive image of the company, their culture and their values. Part 3 of long term hiring focuses on the most tangible portion of hiring – interview day.
As COVID-19 restrictions are enforcing social distance, video interviews have become the norm over the past year. The majority of businesses still use phone interviews as a screen of course but hiring managers should actively embrace video call software for effective and long-term focused hiring. For managers who move through a high numbers of candidates, time management becomes a key role in the hiring process. Compared to in-person interviews, video interviews can save a significant amount of time for both the employer and the job seeker. Video interviews tend to reduce small talk and introduction time in waiting rooms, board rooms, etc. Second, video interviews allow managers to subtly observe the candidate’s technological abilities. Depending on the role, managers would inevitably want to hire someone with basic knowledge of computer usage and video interviews can provide a clue into the candidate’s basic technological capabilities.
Conducting the “Two-Way Interview”
One of the main concepts that have been overarching throughout this series is the idea of the “two-way interview”. After proper preparation, hiring managers should understand the skill set, experience, and culture-fit of an ideal candidate. The next step for managers is to reflect these aspects into interview questions. Implementing behavioral / situational questions is important to assist in determining the culture fit of a candidate. Additionally, to make the candidates be at their most authentic “self”, managers should make an effort in creating a welcoming environment for the candidates, keeping the majority of questions open and conversational.
3 examples of culture questions to consider
- “Could you speak about a company culture you’ve been a part of that you really enjoyed? What did you enjoy about it?”
- “Could you speak about a company culture you’ve been a part of that you really didn’t care for? What aspects didn’t appeal to you?”
- This question provides insight into what kinds of team they thrive in and what they find valuable in a company’s culture. This can provide insight right away whether or not your company culture is the right fit. As discussed previously for long term hiring, finding the right culture fit is very important.
- Do you have any questions about this role or our company as a whole?
- This question assesses the motivation and ambition behind applying to this specific role at your company. This is their chance, if it hasn’t been taken previously in the interview, to really dig into the role and the culture fit for themselves.
While the candidate is typically the party that should follow up first to express their interest and thank you the interview, the employer needs to be mindful of their prompt follow up as well. If the candidate is one you are interested in, setting expectations for timelines is very important. This is a reflection of working with your organization and you want to demonstrate respect and transparency right away. What are the next steps, when should they expect to hear back, providing any feedback from the interview, as well as any potential further requests for references, demonstrations of work, etc.
There are many elements that feed into a strong hiring process that facilitates long-term hires. Presenting a strong company pitch, focusing on culture-fit, and carefully considering that candidate experience are three ways to ensure you’re on the right track to landing long-term talent.