When interviewing a candidate, it’s important to talk to them and genuinely learn about who they are as a person. It’s the best way to learn about your potential hires, but sometimes the number of candidates that need to be interviewed can be overwhelming, making it daunting to have genuine conversations with everyone. But there are key questions that can be asked to candidates that will still evoke a heartfelt response and will keep the interviews moving at a steady pace.
1. Why do you want to work for our company?
This question is simple and direct and acts a good way to start off the conversation. What you’re looking for with this question is how much passion the candidate answers with. There’s a clear difference in a candidate answering with “I’ve been applying for as many jobs as I can until one accepts me.” versus “I’ve been interested in working with this company for a couple of years now. I’m very excited to finally be able to speak about the opportunity of being hired.” Just with those answers, you can get a sense of who is going to be a more passionate employee.
2. What are some of your biggest accomplishments on the job?
This question will give them a chance to think about some of their accolades while working. This is the part where you let the candidate speak so they’re able to get comfortable and let all their thoughts out. Always remember to keep it as a discussion, don’t constantly interrupt to ask them the specifics of every little thing. It’ll make them nervous and give them the sense that management is naturally untrusting. The interviewer needs to know when to speak and when to listen.
3. What is your work from home set up like?
Under the presumption that the position is one where you work from home, learning a little about their set up and home life is a good way to open the floor for person-to-person discussion, letting them know that they’re valued even before they’re hired. This will allow for you to know what their daily responsibilities are and how you can work a schedule around their life, as opposed to forcing a schedule on them. It will let them know that you’re willing to work with them, not against them.
4. What do you do to keep yourself focused
This will let pick the brain of the candidate a little bit. Whether the position is on sight or at home, it’s good to know what actions they take in order to keep themselves focused. Their answer will give a good sense of whether they need to be micromanaged or they’re able to function on their own for long periods of time without slacking off. Don’t make your decision solely off of how they respond, but make sure to keep it in mind.
5. When can you start?
If you’re considering hiring the applicant, this question is a perfect way to end the interview. Make sure to really pay attention to the applicant’s availability and pinpoint what their schedule will be like after their start date. Even if you don’t have control over their work schedule, make sure to give them a good idea of what it’s going to be like once they start work. Make sure the new employee is prepared. Don’t set them up for failure.