Skills for Interviewers – Always Land Your Best Candidate

7 Tips to Keep Job Candidates Engaged During Your Hiring Process

Candidates often find themselves in tricky situations when it comes to interviewing. This can lead to them disengaging from the hiring process – and you losing what would have been an exceptional hire.

Sometimes this disengagement is caused by the candidate themselves. They may be fearful of rejection, lack interview practice, or feel it is too soon to ask questions. How do you as an interviewer and hiring manager overcome such challenges?

The key is often in knowing how to sell yourself, your company, and the role you are hiring for. Let’s discuss selling skills for interviewers.

How Do You Keep the Top Candidates Engaged in the Hiring Process?

Many candidates find themselves distracted or let down by the hiring process. Therefore, it’s beneficial to develop a hiring strategy for keeping your candidates engaged and focused during an interview. You need to sell them on the role and your company.

The following are seven tips on how to keep your candidates engaged in the hiring process:

1.     Clarify your expectations for the interview

At the start of the interview, take a moment to review what you hope will come out of it. It’s important to be prepared for the process, and to make sure your candidate is prepared, too.

2.     Leverage a candidate’s strengths and interests

Being able to identify with a candidate’s background and interests is an important part of the interview process. This will help you break the ice and break down barriers to conversation. Classic rapport building, this will ultimately lead to a more successful interview.

3.     Have a structured conversation during an interview

It is necessary to maintain the flow of the conversation, and interact with candidates in a manner that allows them to feel comfortable and confident in their responses. A structured conversation includes asking questions that are relevant to the individual’s career, experience, skills, and goals.

4.     Share information in an intelligent way

Interviewers make their job difficult by not giving enough information about what they’re looking for. This lack of information often leads to confusion and miscommunication.

They also often fail to share what is most important to a candidate. This may be because the interviewer hasn’t asked the right questions. It may also be that the candidate feels that certain subjects are ‘out of bounds’ – for example, discussions about salary and compensation.

Be open and honest about all aspects of the job, and encourage candidates to be equally open about the things that are important to them.

5.     Track Your Interviewee’s Behaviour from Start to Finish

The interviewer must be able to track their interviewee’s behaviour from start to finish, which may be difficult for some people if they’re not used to doing so. This is where an interviewee behaviour tracker comes in handy.

Interviewers should review notes after each question that may help them figure out where the conversation went off track or what the interviewee responded with. It can also help with follow-up questions during and at the end of the interview.

In this way, you can understand the process of the interviewee’s behaviour from start to finish and avoid missing crucial information. You can also learn which topics needed more attention or need to be re-asked.

6.     Understand that your interviewee is not a mind reader

To understand your interviewee, it is important that you remember that they are not a mind reader. This means that you need to communicate with them and provide valuable information about yourself and your company, so that they can make decisions based on what they know. This is important – they only know what you tell them!

7.     Focus on what the candidate wants to sell the role to them

The way to really sell your role and company to a candidate is to focus on how joining you will help them achieve their goals and lifestyle they desire.

This is where it helps to have a ‘middleman’ – a role in which our recruitment consultants have exceptional experience. We gather feedback from the hiring company and the candidate after each interview, and we use this knowledge to help you focus on the candidate’s desires in the next interview. Let me give you an example.

A candidate we had put forward was the favoured candidate for a senior role with one of our clients. However, during a feedback interview we discovered that the candidate was becoming hesitant. It turns out that one of the candidate’s primary goals was to work more flexible hours for family reasons. We explained this to the client.

In the next interview, the hiring manager discussed the company’s flexible hours policies in more detail. They learned the reasons why this was important to the candidate, and they were able to agree a work rota that suited both parties. The outcome was that the candidate was re-engaged in the process and enthusiastic to accept a job offer from our client.

Without us acting as the agent to both the client and the candidate, the client may have missed out on the ideal candidate, and the candidate may have missed out on the perfect career move.

To Sell Your Job, Find Out What Motivates the Candidate

In today’s environment, it is not only the candidate who is selling themselves. It is the hiring company. The top candidates will have many opportunities presented to them. Unless you find out what motivates them and then sell to this motivation, it is unlikely that your preferred candidate will accept your job offer.

The first way to find out what the candidate wants from the position is by having them tell you. By giving them an opportunity to describe their ideal work environment, you can get some insight into whether this is a good fit for them.

The second way to find out what a candidate wants is by asking questions that will help you gauge their interest in potential benefits of the job. For example, if they are interested in working for an organization that offers stock options, ask them about when they would like to receive those options and why it matters to them.

It is also important to ask them about their current state of mind and work/life balance: this will help you understand what they want in terms of physical location, hours, etc.

Finally, ask them how much money they make: this will give you an idea of what they are willing to accept in their financial package.

When we work with you to secure top-quality candidates, we are in touch constantly with them. We provide feedback and ask for feedback. We ‘take their temperature’ and make continuous assessments.

What we learn helps you to market yourself more effectively, and sell to the candidate’s motivations. This helps to create the emotional engagement that leads to a successful outcome for you and the candidate.

Are you finding it difficult to hire your preferred candidates into your senior roles? To learn more about our strategic approach to your hiring needs, contact Lime Talent to discuss our executive search services.