Top 10 interview questions to help you find the right employee
Finding the right employee for your business is always a daunting task. You want someone who will work hard for you, keep your company’s best interests at heart, but bring new and exciting ideas to the table.
Finding someone that fits the bill and strikes the balance doesn’t have to be complicated. While the recruitment process is often longwinded, it is worth doing it properly, especially when you can find the right candidate right away.
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Every business – from start-up through to established enterprise – needs to hire candidates that can boost productivity. With the economy at a standstill, growing your business can be a challenge. But with a sea of candidates that would jump at the chance of employment, it is a challenge worth undertaking.
Here, we look at 10 interview questions you should ask to help you find the right employee:
1. What do you know about the company?
This is one of the most common interview questions and with good reason. If a candidate hasn’t done any research about your company, how serious can they be about the role?
Look out for those who have really researched you, and provide you with information from deep within your website or brochure. The ‘right’ candidate will have researched you and the role in depth.
2. What attracted you to the job and the company?
This will follow on naturally from what they know about you. The key is to look for honesty here, not just who can ‘suck up’ the best. The perfect candidate will have a well-rounded argument as to why they were attracted to your business and the role.
Make sure you are looking for someone who is passionate about the job, before they have even started. This will help you to identify whether or not they will be able to produce the kind of results expected of them.
3. What can you bring to the business?
Give your interviewee a chance to show you what they’re made of. Suitable candidates will do more than just say why they fit the job description. They will give you more than the standard interview answers.
If they’ve researched your company, they will know what you already offer and how they can fit into this. Some candidates may also be able to see where you’re slipping up, and what they can do to steer you in the right direction.
4. What are your career aspirations?
As an employer, you shouldn’t be naive enough to think your candidate will stay with you forever. While for some candidates this may be the idea, others will view you as a stepping stone. Either way, it is a good idea to gauge what their career aspirations are.
Do they want to grow and learn? Can they see themselves doing that with you? You should aim to hire a driven and committed person. If they have a career path in mind, they are likely to work hard to achieve this. In turn, this will be of huge benefit to your business.
5. Give an example of a time when you displayed a (job specific) skill
Once you have a good feel for your candidate, you should test their metal. Get them to give you a recent example of when they displayed a skill, or carried out a specific task.
Make sure it is relevant to your industry, but open enough that those looking to make the transition to your industry can answer. General examples tend to be examples of team work, customer service, and working as an individual.
Find out what they thought went well – and not so well – and what they would do differently next time. See how these examples – and the outcomes – would work for your business. Don’t be afraid of failure either. If the candidate can assess and analyse their mistakes, it shows professionalism.
6. What are your strengths and your weaknesses?
When trying to find the right employee for your business, you should consider what they do well and not so well. The strengths will obviously be beneficial for your company. But you want to hire a human being.
You want to hire someone who knows where they could improve, and will work hard to bridge these skills gaps. Interviewees’ are obviously trying to sell themselves, but it is important they display these qualities. After all, no one is perfect.
7. How would you solve this (job specific) problem/task?
If it’s good enough for Google, it should be for you. The search engine giant is famous for asking some pretty tough questions, and asking candidates to complete tasks. While you don’t have to be as mind-boggling as Google, you can take inspiration from them.
After all, what could be a better way at seeing how suitable someone is? You could even have them sit with your team and perform tasks to see how well they complete them.
This isn’t about them getting it right or wrong. It is about seeing how they handle the jobs they would be carrying out, should they be successful.
8. What has been your biggest career accomplishment to date?
This question will help you establish how driven your subject is. Did they overcome a problem to reach this accomplishment? Or was it something that came easy to them? Why was it such an accomplishment, what made it matter so much?
Ideal candidates will speak of accomplishments that really meant something to them. The details of the story and task may not be relevant for your company, but you can see how this would fit in with your business.
9. What are the most valuable lessons you’ve learned in your career so far?
This is another valuable question to gauge how the candidate will fit in with your company. It’s not necessarily about the lessons they have learned; more about what they consider to be of value. This kind of question will help you see what makes the candidate tick.
Do they share the same values as you and your employees? Will they fit in to your team, and work hard for you? Or is there likely to be a clash of interests that will impact on productivity?
10. Why should we give you the job?
Again, this is perhaps the most asked question in interviews. Despite this, it’s the one that loses most people the job.
You don’t want to hear that someone is desperate for the job, or the money. You want the candidate to be passionate about the career prospects and the company. Ideal candidates should be looking to grow and improve themselves, as well as boost your business.
Finding the right employees for your company is often a challenge, but not an impossible one. By carefully selecting the questions you ask, and mixing them up with candidate specific questions, you can help find the perfect person right away.
This guest post has been supplied by Outcomes UK, a specialist interim management recruitment company. To find out more about hiring the right people for your company, visit their website.