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7 Ways to Streamline Your Interview Process

streamline interview processThe pressure is on to fill a position in your organization. You’re racing the clock to find a candidate as quickly as possible while ensuring they’re a good fit with your company culture. And if you’re like most HR professionals, you probably can’t stand doing interviews. They’re tedious, time consuming, and you’ll likely return to 15 new emails in your inbox after each one.

Recruiting a new candidate doesn’t need to be a headache. Use these tips to streamline your interview process:

Avoid Saturated Job Boards

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by job boards like Indeed or Monster, you’re not alone.The 2017 Annual Recruiting Survey indicated that 35% of recruiters have only had some success using job boards. Another study showed that 70% of employers feel they receive too many applicants from job boards and 59% don’t have the resources to follow up with every job board applicant.

Not only are job boards becoming inundated with listings, many of them are also full of ads. You can have a spectacular job description that hooks the candidate and demonstrates the value you offer to employees, but it’ll get buried in the sea of postings. Additionally, sifting through the dozens of unqualified resumes from more general community forums like Kijiji or Craigslist can be a waste of time (and not to mention frustrating!).

Save yourself the hassle and skip the job boards. Look to the following method to find ideal candidates, or partner with a search firm that has access to extended networks of specialized talent.

Leverage Your Network

Word-of-mouth is one of the most influential types of marketing and sometimes, finding a job candidate works the same way. Getting a referral from someone you know and trust allows you to ask pointed and honest questions about their experience with the candidate  and what value they may bring to yours. These are types of questions you can’t exactly ask job seekers during an interview.

Tap into your LinkedIn connections, call up past colleagues, or talk to close family and friends that might have some leads for the position you’re hiring for. You never know who they might know!

Pre-screen Candidates

You know that resumes don’t always tell the full story. Rather than jumping straight into interviews, streamline the process by setting up 15 minute pre-screening phone calls with the candidates on your short list. This will allow you to communicate details about the position, filter out any qualified individuals, and gauge his/her seriousness about the position.

Don’t have time to pre-screen job candidates? This is one way an executive search firm helps.

Block Out Time in Your Calendar

Managing your time effectively can help alleviate the stress that goes into interviewing. A great way to be productive is to use time blocking. Create events in your calendar with an alert, just as you would for a meeting.

Schedule blocks for:

    • Pre-screening calls (15-20 minutes each)
    • Meeting with senior executives to discuss potential candidates (30 minutes)
    • Face-to-face interviews (30 minutes each)
    • Reference checking (30 minutes per candidate)

Involve Senior Executives Early On

When hiring for an executive assistant position, or filling a role that will report directly to senior staff members, it’s crucial that you solicit their input early on. They may have feedback on your shortlist, perhaps their requirements may have changed, or they may be able to identify any red flags.

Ensure that all resumes on the shortlist cross the senior staff member(s) desk prior to conducting interviews and ask that they add notes to each resume or set up a short meeting to review potential candidates.  Once all interviews are complete, meet with your senior executives again to get their input.

Create Interview Templates

Taking an hour to develop templates to use during interviews will save you a great deal of time in the long run.

Set up a spreadsheet with two columns: one for key questions to ask candidates and another to jot down notes during interviews. Print out several copies to grab before you head into interviews.

Be sure to include questions that are specific to the role you’re filling, rather than creating a single template for all job interviews. Try to avoid asking any questions that were included in the application process. This will demonstrate to the candidate that you’ve taken the time to think about what you’ll ask during the interview and how it will ultimately help your team make the decision.

Take Your Time

Even though you might be pressed for time to fill the role, try to slow down and be mindful of the decisions you’re making. Your senior executives will be much more satisfied if you find perfect candidate a few days late rather than selecting the wrong individual on time. The costs of hiring the wrong candidate can add up very quickly.

Working with a recruitment agency that specializes in the type of role you are trying to source saves you time, money, energy, and ensures you’re hiring the right candidate. Contact us today to discuss your talent acquisition needs.

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