March 28, 2024

Cracking the Career Code: A Clearly Defined Interview Process


Episode Highlights

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In this episode of Cracking the Career Code, Matt and Kierra discuss the importance of having a clearly defined interview process. They stress the value in partnering with hiring managers to fully understand the requirements of a role and chat through how to take a consultative approach when helping clients develop and refine phases in their interview process. If you’re interested in creating a consistent and transparent interview process for candidates, listen in to learn more.

Episode Transcript

Hi, welcome back to Cracking the Career Code with Matt and Kierra where we provide candidates the keys to success in their job search. Matt is going to start us off today with what is the most important to finding a clearly defined interview process. How to go about that and where should we start?

Yeah, so as recruiters, I think here at Hirewell, at least, we also act as talent acquisition consultants. So oftentimes when we’re meeting with clients, we can help refine what their interview process is. Or maybe a company is in such early phases that they haven’t really even given thought to what their interview process is. So, we really start with a needs analysis, you know, trying to define what’s most important for the company, what roles are top priority, what kind of timeline they’re looking to fill roles by, and that helps us give a sense of like, you know, what’s the expectations going to be throughout the interview process?

Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. And defining the role, I think it’s really important that you understand what are the most important things that a candidate needs to have in order to be successful in this role? That includes skill set, technologies, tools, and then what are the nice to haves? What would be a great addition for a candidate to have?

And then finally knowing the culture and some soft skills that would make them successful as well? I think understanding a company’s culture is going to be really important to just making sure that it’s a good fit on both ends. You want the candidate to share what they’re looking for and the company as well so you can vet out people and make sure that it’s a good fit on both ends. But what else do you think is going to be important to just defining the interview process?

Sure. Yeah. I mean, lots of times recruiters are playing matchmaker as companies to candidates. Both internal and agency, like we are at Hirewell. I think this needs analysis, role definition, understanding culture, it helps us sell the company and the position to people that are interested in working for a company.

Also as an internal recruiter, you want to be making your company seem like a great landing spot for someone’s career. So, all this work that we do on the front end, before we even start reaching out to candidates can be really valuable for our clients.

Yeah, agreed. And that also entails looking at what the interview process is going to look like.

Who will they be meeting with? Are you aware of who’s going to be meeting with each candidate? That’s something that needs to be laid out ahead of time. That way we’re not legging the interview process at all. It’s not taking months to conduct. I know that when we drag on an interview process, we also risk losing really great talent because they are most likely interviewing at other places if they are actively on the search.

But also the order of interviews is going to be really important to what makes sense as far as who they’re meeting with, to make sure that you’re not wasting the candidate’s time or the company’s time that is interviewing. What else do you think is going to be important in that mix?

Yeah. So there’s this concept of opportunity cost, right? So, your time spent interviewing as an interviewer for a company, like, you know, what is that costing you? What other opportunities is that, taking you away from, you know, stuff in your job description and your responsibilities that you’re doing in day to day with project deadlines.

Like if you’re spending eight hours in a week interviewing candidates, like that’s a full day loss of productivity. That’s why it’s important to know who’s going to be involved at which step of the interview process. So then you can be transparent with your candidates and say, you know, it’s going to be these three steps in the interview process.

Here’s generally what’s going to happen in each of those steps and about the rough timeline we think it will take to get through all of that. And that’s because exactly what you said, like there’s going to be candidates that are interviewing elsewhere. There’s going to be candidates who are currently working, who don’t have four hours in a day to meet with four people back to back for 45 minutes to an hour each unless they took a half day off from their current job. So you just want to be realistic of what you’re asking your internal interviewers to do and also what you’re asking your candidates to do. While also doing an effective job of evaluating their fit for the role that’s open.

Yeah. And I also think it’s important to have this process already streamlined and thought out because it does give the impression of the interviewer and the interviewee, what is it going to be like working at that company? Are they organized? Are they on top of it? So I think it also just sets the runway for what the the job is going to look like and who they’re going to be working with. So, it’s important to ask the interviewers or find out ahead of time when they’re going to be on vacation. Are they going to be available? Is there any major life events coming up that’s going to be getting in the way of their interview availability?

I think that will also affect the process in which these interviews are conducted in a timely manner. So, that’s all things that we should find out ahead of time before starting the process and just making sure that we’re going to be able to move the process along without any major delays.

Yeah and most good recruiters are also going to be doing that on the other end with candidates, you know, talking about what upcoming vacations do you have? Like, realistically, what’s your notice period at your current company? Is it just the standard two weeks? Or, you know, are you trying to take a week off?

Because you want to chill before you start a new job. Do you have a bonus getting paid out soon and you really want to stay until you receive that? So, you know, just transparency is key throughout all of this and working through on both ends with the clients and the candidates to make sure that when you get to the end and you want to make an offer you want to make sure that there’s no surprises there and that all the timelines align and all needs are met.

Yeah, you want to leave a good impression on both ends whether you are the person interviewing or the interviewer. Yup. And also I think it’s really important that feedback is provided regardless of if the candidate is moving forward or not in the process. If they’re taking the time out of their day to interview and show interest in your company, then it is important that we’re able to provide feedback.

And also it’s good to gauge feedback from the candidate that did the interview and see how they feel about the company and any concerns that they had as well, just to make sure both ends are tied.

Sure. Sure. Yeah. You know, when you ask a candidate what their thoughts of an interview were sometimes.

Yeah. You can uncover blind spots that an interviewer wasn’t aware of. Right. And you know, with providing feedback on why someone didn’t get a job, like sometimes it’s as simple as there were other candidates who performed better. And, you know, that’s just kind of the competitive nature of job searching.

But personally, if I was a candidate and job seeker, I’d want to know that rather than get ghosted. Or given nothing as to why I wasn’t selected. So, big on transparency, as transparent as you can be. Yeah.

Yeah, absolutely. Well, thank you so much for joining us today on Cracking the Career Code. Go check out for more content and follow us on LinkedIn, if you are not already.

Thanks everyone. Thank you.



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