Training 101: Best Practices for Behavioral Interviews

Hiring manager conducting a behavioral interview.

Not all interviews are created equal. Behavioral interviews just happen to be better than most.

By using a candidate’s past experiences to assess their future potential, behavioral interviews serve as one of the most accurate predictors of how a candidate would perform as an employee. 

The popular logic is that if a candidate exhibited questionable behavior in professional settings in the past, who’s to say that they won’t do the same in the future? And by the looks of it, this logic usually prevails: 89% of hiring managers and recruiters rated behavioral interviewing techniques as effective, which was more than any other traditional interviewing technique.

If you want to harness the full power of behavioral interviews and weed out bad hires, the first step is ensuring that your interviewers are trained in the art of this special type of interviewing. That’s right—candidates aren’t the only ones who need to prepare for interviews.

Read on to discover several best practices to emphasize in your behavioral interviewer training.

Craft Strategic Initial Questions

The questions that your interviewers ask for behavioral interviews need to be thoughtful and strategic. Now isn’t the time to say “Tell me about yourself,” or the classic, “Walk me through your resume.” All of that information can be learned from the materials submitted in a candidate’s application. Now’s the time to dig deep.

The behavioral questions that your interviewers ask should get to the heart of a candidate’s experience and uncover specific competencies most relevant to the role, such as leadership, quick thinking, and teamwork. 

To ensure that the questions are purposeful, write down several of the competencies that an ideal candidate should possess. Then, plan out questions that prompt candidates to discuss past behaviors that allude to each competency. These questions should be open-ended and shouldn’t hint at the desired response.

Ask Explorative Follow-up Questions 

Ready to dig even deeper? Initial behavioral interview questions are effective on their own, but your interviewers must be prepared to probe further with follow-up questions.

Unlike initial questions, follow-up questions shouldn’t be pre-planned. Rather, they should arise from cues that your interviewers pick up on from candidates during the interview. This makes active listening a crucial component in successful behavioral interviewing techniques.

Follow-up is necessary when responses need more detail, don’t fully answer the original question, or outwardly attempt to evade the question. Non-verbal cues, such as a shift in a candidate’s demeanor, should also elicit follow-up.

These additional questions shouldn’t feel interrogative towards candidates. Rather, they should feel explorative, adding nuance and depth to a candidate’s behavior. 

Look Out for STAR-Studded Answers

As another component of proper behavioral interviewing techniques, your interviewers should keep an eye out for candidates that use the STAR method when structuring their answers.

The STAR method is a structure candidates should use to answer behavioral interview questions in a thoughtful manner. A STAR (situation, task at hand, action taken, and result) response contains a structured beginning, middle, and end. This adds a storytelling framework to a candidate’s response, providing fluidity, depth, and clarity for your interviewers. 

The structure of a candidate’s responses tells just as much about their competencies as the actual content of their responses. A candidate who effortlessly employs STAR likely instills meaningful thought into their everyday speech. If a job requires articulate communication, your interviewers should highly prioritize candidates who demonstrate STAR.

Remember to Practice Empathy

We all know how nerve-wracking a job interview can be, and the high level of thought that behavioral interviews require can feel even more stress-inducing.

When interviewers practice empathy, candidates feel at ease. Comfortable candidates are better equipped to demonstrate their abilities, which makes it easier for interviewers to assess their true nature and make smart hiring decisions.

Interviewers that fail to lean into their empathetic side are bad for business. 58% of job seekers reportedly declined a job offer due to a poor experience in the hiring process, meaning that an uncomfortable interview may prompt candidates to run the opposite way.

To practice empathy, interviewers should allow candidates an appropriate amount of time to think about each question before they respond. While interviews should be kept professional, starting each interview with light small talk can go a long way in alleviating a candidate’s stress. All in all, interviews that feel a bit more human form trust between interviewers and the candidate, cultivating the all-important candidate relationship.

Ready to Elevate Your Behavioral Interviewer Training?

Behavioral interviews can be a fantastic tool for hiring teams, yet behavioral interviews are only as good as their interviewers. Enforcing training on proper behavioral interviewing techniques guarantees that your interviewers asks the right questions and uses the best strategies to hire top talent and build meaningful connections with every candidate. 

Interviewing 101: Building a Superstar Interview Panel

An interview panel interviewing a candidate.

When executed correctly, an interview panel can be your secret weapon in optimizing your hiring process and securing top talent for your organization.

Interview panels offer a wide range of benefits, from reducing your time to hire, to minimizing interviewer bias, to gauging how candidates navigate group dynamics. A well-rounded panel — stacked with a diversity of perspectives, aligned to the same objective, and well-trained in interviewing — has the potential to wield spectacular results in meeting your hiring goals. 

On the flip side, a weak, haphazardly assembled panel can be disastrous. And with today’s candidates, the stakes have never been higher: 44% of job seekers agree that the interview experience is the most influential part of the hiring process. 

A negative interview can shatter a candidate’s impression of a company, and candidates aren’t afraid to share their bad experiences with the world. 72% of candidates say they’ve shared bad hiring experiences online, and we all know that negative word-of-mouth can do wonders in damaging an organization’s reputation.

All in all, a thoughtfully crafted interview panel can add significant value to your hiring strategy. Choosing adept, trained interviewers for your panel is key to standing out to candidates and delivering a memorable candidate experience. Here are five best practices to assemble the interview panel of your dreams.

Identify Potential Interviewers

At the crux of a successful interview panel building strategy is robust knowledge on the interviewers who are available to you. As a recruiter, this means you should know who’s completed interviewer training and who’s in the shadowing stage, as well as their available hours, their interview loads, etc.

When you have this information immediately at hand, it’s easier to identify and schedule the right people for your interviews. However, when tasked with scheduling multiple interviewers for a panel, navigating the different schedules, time zones, workloads, and training stages of your interviewers can quickly become overwhelming.

The good news: here in the digital age, your tech stack is vital to handling the logistics of panel interviews. Investing in tech that assists in intelligent interviewer selection allows you to automate the process of identifying and load balancing your interview teams, reduce the complexities of communications, and schedule along with the risk of interviewer burnout. This way, scheduling an interview panel is just as easy as scheduling one-on-one chats.

Emphasize Representation and Inclusivity 

A commitment to DEI is a must-have for job seekers – 86% of candidates say that DEI in the workplace is crucial for them when considering a role. With interviews being candidates’ first impressions of a workplace, presenting a diverse, representative interview panel ensures your organization is conveying a corporate culture that is both inclusive and equitable, all while mitigating factors such as unconscious bias.

Take time to thoughtfully consider what your interview panel looks like. Does your panel consist of interviewers with an array of backgrounds and perspectives, properly representing the diversity of your organization’s employees, or is your panel a sea of homogeneity?

Sharing pronouns (she/her, they/them, etc.) when meeting candidates is another way to actively practice inclusivity in hiring. Candidates want to feel comfortable where they work, and interviews are the prime time to show that your organization doesn’t just talk about the importance of DEI, but actually takes time to implement equitable practices.

Align on the Ideal Candidate

The interviewers in your panel should be in complete alignment with the attributes they’re looking for in a candidate based on the job posting’s requirements. When interviewers are in agreement with what they want a candidate to bring to the table in consideration of what the role needs to accomplish, the interview process becomes even more efficient and effective in identifying the right talent in the fastest time possible.

After the interview panel, holding a post-interview roundup is a great way to come together and debrief on how the interviews went, if the candidate matches the attributes the interviewers were looking for, and if an offer should realistically be made.

Widen Your Interviewer Pool 

The more aggressive your hiring goals, the more employees you’ll need to be interviewers for your various interview panels and individual interviews. Less than 10% of HR executives require interviewer training in their companies, meaning that the vast majority of organizations risk losing out on candidates due to interviewers unequipped to fulfill their roles.

Broadening your interviewer pool with interviewer training is crucial to distributing the interview load evenly across your organization’s employees, all while making sure that your interviewers are qualified to hire quality talent in record time. Interviews are the first interaction that candidates have with your company – make sure you start on the right foot! 

Download our guide to learn how interviewer training can transform your hiring process.

Interviewer Training Essentials: Level Up Your Post-Interview Roundup

If interviewing is a muscle and interviewer training is your gym, then your post-interview roundups are competitions for you to show off your skills.

There are tons of articles for candidates about how to nail the all-important interview, but there’s a surprising lack of information for interviewers about how to have a productive post-interview roundup.

These five questions serve as a great starting point for stellar interviewing teams.

1. Did the Candidate Seem Excited About Working Here?

While some individuals are just naturally reserved, it’s easy to tell if someone is excited at the prospect of working for your company if you know what to look for. Little things like sustaining eye contact, asking questions, and trying to start a conversation are all baseline metrics.

Other tell-tale signs are making references to research they did about your company. This should go beyond just knowing when you were founded or your CEO’s name and can include referencing events that involve the team, your company’s core values (and how they align to them), and more.

Above all, if you ask them why they want to work there, they should have an answer.

2. Should Anyone Else Interview the Candidate?

Besides the obvious individuals who they should speak to (their potential manager, team members, someone to interview for a core values-fit, HR phone screen, etc), there might be an additional person that the HR Manager wants them to speak with before proceeding with an offer.

Bringing this up during the post-interview roundup helps you avoid a potential backlog when it comes to bringing an offer (or not) to a candidate. After all, we’re living in a job market where candidate relationships are key, and this means fostering a smooth and swift interview process.

3. Is the Candidate Okay With Failure?

As you undoubtedly learned in training on conducting stellar interviews, the questions that you ask provide a window into a candidate’s future performance. Bouncing back from failure is an essential skill, yet only 27% of employees have high levels of resilience. Failure, and the candidate’s reaction to it, is a crucial topic to broach both during the interview and the roundup.

4. Do They Align With the Attributes We’re Looking For?

Defining your focus is the most important when it comes to making sure your post-interview roundups run quickly and smoothly. When as much as 80% of employee turnover is due to bad hiring decisions, thoughtfully considering your ideal candidate’s qualities can translate to better employee retention down the line.

The first step is setting a candidate scorecard through your Applicant Tracking System. A candidate scorecard will give you and the other interviewers different categories and subcategories to focus on during the roundup, such as if the candidate was collaborative, analytical, receptive to feedback, etc.

5. Do We Want To Hire the Candidate for the Right Reasons?

You never want to hire someone just because everyone’s feeling the strain left by the open position. With poor hiring decisions costing companies up to $240,000, the harm of hiring someone who’s a bad fit is astronomical and way more costly than the interview process as a whole.

Taking a step back and discussing with each other if you want to continue with the candidate because they’re a good fit or just because there’s a critical need will save your company upwards of millions of dollars in the long run.

Get Advanced Interviewer Training

We all want to excel at our jobs. GoodTime elevates your team’s interviewing skills with interviewer training paths that broaden your pool of interviewers and reduce each person’s load.

Request a demo to learn how GoodTime creates empowered interviewers.

How to Run High-quality Interviews in the Distance Economy

Interviews are a critical part of any hiring phase. But what happens when you have to undertake these interviews against the backdrop of an emerging distance economy? It’s more challenging when you have to undertake the interviewing process remotely. Unless you employ impeccable skills and tactics, you’ll likely miss the mark in your recruitment process. 

So, how do you ensure that your remote interview process is above board? Scott Parker, Director of Product Marketing at Goodtime, spoke with Siadhal Magos, Founder and CEO of Metaview. Here’re some useful takeaways from the LinkedIn Live conversation that can be handy for hiring leaders managing the remote hiring processes. 

Prepare Your Interviewers Like Your Company Depends on It

When it comes to building candidate relationships, there’s little room for error during remote interviews. The days of the fashionably decorated offices loaded with perks are done for the foreseeable future, so preparation and proper training are key.

In most cases, candidates anticipate a polished interview process with minimal hitches. Having specialized training paths to ensure you have the right people asking the right questions to the best candidates is everything.

The interview preparation phase involves more than just selecting a panel of interviewers. Preparation involves optimizing your tech stack, the questions being asked, the interview sequence (who’s asking what and at what stage), and the scheduled times for the interviews.

Unlike face-to-face interviews, where you have more leeways to make adjustments, there’s very little wiggle room for remote interviews, especially if they’re across multiple time zones. If you want to run a high-quality interview in the distance economy, create training paths and interview templates to scale your process efficiently while keeping it bespoke to each candidate and role.   

Train a Broad Pool of Interviewers 

The new distance economy means the candidate pool is far deeper, which could easily overwhelm your team. A mistake some hiring managers make is settling for a smaller interviewer pool, which exposes the team to two negative outcomes: burnout and a slow time-to-hire.

It’s critical to empower your interviewers both in skill set and in load balancing. If you anticipate interviewing 70% of the shortlisted talent, you need to have at least 30% of an equivalent number of interviewers to oversee the interviews. 

It’s essential to expand the interviewer pool when dealing with remote interviews. This way, you have room for diversity, increased productivity and better succession planning. Before commencing the interview process, empower the interview team in a way that they can manage the process seamlessly. It’s also important to note that your interviewers are the face of your brand. What they portray during the interview is what the interviewees will take as the actual representation of your brand.

Plainly: an exhausted and dismissive interview panel will absolutely send the wrong signal. Don’t let it happen. 

Invest in the Right Resources

It’s surprising how hiring managers can set a very high standard for the candidates, yet rarely invest as much in the interviewing team. The interviewer training process is helpful as it sets the standards when dealing with interviewers.

Properly trained interviewers can cut the actual time of recruitment by up to 50%. The quality of the actual interview process depends more on the skill level of the interviewers than on the number of panelists. An interviewer should have conversational skills and analytical capabilities when managing the recruitment process. Other aspects such as experience in managing people also come in handy.

As an organization, it’s essential to invest the time in training your interviewers. When dealing with remote candidates, specific skills are critical. Unfortunately, most of these necessary skills cannot be attained without a formal, standardized training. 

Vary Your Question Types 

The process of interviewing candidates encompasses both open and closed-ended questions. Sometimes, direct, closed questions during an interview save time. But in other cases, you also need to listen to what the interview has said in length about some topic areas. This is significantly more so when dealing with remote interviews. 

In most cases, open-ended questions are helpful in the modern distance economy context. Open-ended questions allow you to probe the candidates more and invite them into a conversation. It’s important to do this, since it will enable the candidate to feel at ease and blend into the conversation. It’s essential to set questions so that they invite a broad range of responses.

The future of hiring will witness a mix of remote, in-person and hybrid work settings. Open-ended interviews present a chance for interviewees to explain how they intend to ensure flexibility in response to the uncertain future. 

 It will also help put the interviewee on the different spot-on issues. On the other hand, closed-ended questions allow the interviewee to give short answers on direct matters. 

The Bottom Line

The distance economy continues to disrupt how businesses run and operate. Talent acquisition teams must adjust and adapt to this evolving world of remote hiring. Optimizing remote interviews is among the new norms that every TA leader must embrace to develop the best candidate relationship possible. 

Interview Strategy Basics: Build the Candidate Relationship

Candidate interviewing for a job.

A seamless candidate experience has become even more elusive in today’s distance economy, where things move faster than ever. It’s a new world of work, and people use technology to collaborate from anywhere — a change that’s had an enormous impact on the priorities of job seekers.

Now, candidates expect employers to give them the work experience and flexibility they need in order to flourish — and rightfully so.

With so many people experiencing emotional, physical, and financial burdens from the fallout of the pandemic, they’re reevaluating what’s most important to them and starting to put their own needs first. They want to be part of a workplace that is aligned with their values, and where genuine professional connections and holistic support are the norms.

Remote work and virtual hiring have been a monumental shift for talent teams, and organizations that are winning the race for critical talent are now focusing on building candidate relationships throughout every single part of the hiring funnel. 

That’s why today’s talent teams need to provide candidates with a flexible, personal experience as well as authentic insight into the company, the role, and the team they’re considering. To help you make the changes that matter, consider how you can focus on the candidate relationship before, during, and after the interview.

How To Create Genuine Candidate Connections Before the Interview

Train Your Talent Teams

Cultivating genuine connections starts long before a candidate’s interview is even scheduled. It starts by training the people who make the first impression on the candidate — the interviewers.

This is critical, and here’s why — an interviewer’s performance is a direct reflection of your company. So, to create genuine connections, train your interviewers on these key practices:

  • Always treat candidates with respect and kindness.
  • Be attentive when they’re talking so you can better understand their needs.
  • Despite hectic schedules, use the interview to truly connect with candidates. Smile and nod to show you’re listening.
  • Allow candidates to engage in real conversations about the things that matter to them.
  • Help them feel heard and understood by asking them to elaborate or by reiterating what they’ve said.
  • To minimize bias, ask open-ended and behavioral-based questions.
  • Be transparent, and be prepared to answer questions about topics like culture and pay.

Promote Flexibility and Fairness

Flexibility is at the top of most candidates’ lists. Prove that your company values flexibility by making it a key part of the interview process.

Start by respecting candidates’ time and letting them self-schedule their interview appointments. Automated platforms, like GoodTime Hire, empower candidates to select their own interview slot and even reschedule, if necessary.

Besides flexible scheduling, here are some other ways to provide a fair, flexible interview process:

  • Look for bottlenecks in getting candidates through the process and address candidate dropout. Optimize for efficiency and speed. Can you reduce the number of interviews to speed up the process?
  • Candidates may need accommodations —provide options and support for candidates with your interviewing technology.
  • Understand when life happens, and candidates need to reschedule.
  • Diversify your interview panels. The more trained interviewers on your hiring panel, the more diverse candidates you’ll be able to connect with as they’re able to envision a place for themselves in your organization.

How To Create Genuine Candidate Connections During the Interview

Promote and Enable Authenticity

Will candidates join your company if they feel like they don’t really know what you stand for and what it’s like to work with you? Probably not.

For candidates, transparency in the interview is a reassuring sign. And if you want to win the best talent, honesty, and openness should be the top goals for each interview. To do this:

  • Be up-front about potential challenges or deal-breakers. No one likes having their time wasted.
  • Foster honest, mutual conversations from the beginning.
  • Be open about job requirements and expectations.
  • Talk about compensation and benefits early.
  • Absolutely no ghosting!

Be Willing To Be Interviewed

Candidates are putting their priorities first, and it’s showing up in interviews — that’s right, they’re interviewing you just as much as you’re interviewing them.

Candidates want meaningful work. So, it should come as no surprise that they’re initiating discussions on wellness benefits, flexibility accommodations, growth opportunities, and DE&I initiatives (a topic that 33% of recruiters say they now get more questions about than in previous years).

And in a competitive job market like this one, you have to bring your A-game. That means welcoming candidates’ questions, and being prepared to answer them thoroughly. Ensure you leave plenty of time in the interview to answer their questions — in more than just a rushed moment at the very end.

How To Create Genuine Candidate Connections After the Interview

Give and Receive Candidate Feedback

The best talent teams build genuine relationships with empathy. And this goes two ways — by understanding the candidate’s perspective, and by giving the candidate helpful feedback.

Hiring teams need to actively assess how their interviews are being perceived by all candidates — whether or not there’s an offer on the table. To do this, create open doors for candidate feedback. Then, use that feedback to examine blind spots and uncover growth opportunities for developing future candidate relationships.

Along with candidate feedback, leverage data to understand and refine your process. Continually making small, incremental changes will have a huge impact over time.

For candidates that did not receive an offer, don’t just quit the relationship after the interview. Continue nurturing genuine connections by providing helpful feedback. Here are some tips:

  • Be honest but considerate, giving praise when appropriate.
  • Provide helpful tips for future interviews.
  • Keep in touch with candidates for future opportunities.

Companies That Put Candidate Relationships First Will Be Hard To Beat

In today’s virtual world, the best hiring teams understand candidate needs while delivering best-in-class experiences.

To create the most efficient, candidate-centric process, use hiring automation to maximize personal touch. With GoodTime, hiring teams can automate time-consuming, low-value tasks so they can focus on candidate relationships, instead.

To learn how GoodTime can help your company turn your talent strategy into a winning experience book a demo today.

5 Key Takeaways: Meeting the Expectations of Candidate Experience

Webinar on the candidate experience.

Since March 2020, talent acquisition leaders contended with near-constant changes in both how they approach candidates, as well as sourcing top talent. The question is how to approach the remote work environment efficiently and conduct not only effective interviews with candidates, but also run interview processes that build the candidate experience and create excitement over the new role.

Teddy Chestnut, Chief Revenue Officer from BrightHire, spoke with Scott Parker, Director of Product Marketing for GoodTime, and shared smart recommendations for interviewers faced with the ever-changing recruitment landscape. Here are the key takeaways from their LinkedIn Live, with actionable steps on improving how you train your interviewers and how your team approaches the recruitment process.

“Being remote is no longer an excuse for not having your hiring plan together.”

— Teddy Chestnut, Chief Revenue Officer at BrightHire

1. “The New Normal.” It’s Pretty Much Just Normal Now

The pandemic afforded hiring teams the opportunity (or challenge, depending on your take) to manage the interview process using Zoom and other virtual tools to connect with and communicate effectively with candidates. Teams and candidates alike are now accustomed to having remote communication for interviews, and reverting back to less efficient processes isn’t likely.

Teams have pivoted their plans to remote, hybrid, and flex models to capture top talent.  Having buy-in on a plan that speaks to the future of work is critical. “Being remote is no longer an excuse for not having your hiring plan together,” says Chestnut. 

2. Building Adaptable Teams Is a Non-negotiable

Companies that do not provide flexibility for their candidates are at a distinct disadvantage because now candidates prefer to have the option to work from anywhere.  Because of the new hiring processes teams have been forced to implement, employees are increasingly requiring more interviewer training, and teams need to update their tech stacks to optimize core hiring metrics.

Building a resilient team that not only thrives in a remote work environment, but also demonstrates to prospective candidates the positive culture created in a distributed workforce, makes all the difference when sourcing new talent in this ever-competitive market. 

3. Help Interviewers Avoid Distracti… Look at This TikTok!

Now that many of us work 100% remote and are far more accessible, calendars are filled to maximum capacity. Because of constant access to news and by social media, it’s harder to tell if a remote interviewer is distracted versus when they were in person, because they can’t just grab their phones in the middle of interviews. The challenge today is for interviewers to give their candidates full attention so that the interview process can be as effective as possible.

When the calendar is full with back-to-back meetings, and Slack, WhatsApp, and Gmail constantly send notifications, it’s much harder to concentrate in an interview fully. Candidates can quickly tell when their interviewer is not giving them their full attention, which can create a negative experience that they might write about on Glassdoor.

Those negative reviews could deter potential candidates from even considering applying for a position at your company. Teams need to help interviewers focus on the task at hand, and work hard to avoid distractions in order to create a positive candidate experience.

4. Great Candidates Have Lots of Options (And They Know It)

Since the start of the Great Resignation, it’s been clear that the hiring process has greatly changed. Almost all candidates have other offers, even when they’re sitting right in front of you in an interview.

Interviewers need to remember that candidates have other options, and probably have other people giving them offers for a job. This means that interviewers need to make sure that the company is communicating the value that it can add to the candidate. The candidate also needs to make sure that they present themselves in the best way possible. 

Things have drastically changed with the dynamic between the candidate and the interviewer. This creates a sense of urgency between the interviewer and the candidates and it makes the interviewer keenly aware that they have to make sure that the scheduling works well and they’re not skipping interviews. Otherwise, these candidates can easily take a different job offer because of a delay caused by the interviewer.

5. Training Interviewers Is the New Non-negotiable for 2022 

When you’re in a situation requiring an interview where you have to have over seven hours of interviewing a day, logistics become challenging. Interviewers have to take time to do candidate research, write the feedback, and have time for preparation even before the interview starts.

Interviewers must have the right training to know how to interpret what they learn about the candidates they’re interviewing. When the interviewers are trained with the skills needed to manage remote interviewing, the interview process will be so much more efficient than it would’ve been if they were not well trained — or worse, not trained at all. 

Time To Elevate the Candidate Experience With Interviewer Training

Train interviewers how to create an amazing interview experience— then teach them to trust the process.

The time is now to implement interviewer training. GoodTime helps you train interviews with ease, giving you one hiring experience solution that lets you track interviewers and their progress and train them at scale. GoodTime gives you the confidence that your selected interviewers evaluate candidates effectively.

Want to learn more? Sign up for a demo now. 

Creating an Amazing Interviewer Training Program

There’s no better predictor of job success than a rock solid interview. 

What’s more, a well-executed interview is a critical factor for most candidates when deciding whether or not to accept a job offer — or hold out for a different one. 

When interviews don’t go well, they can lead to low quality hiring decisions, an abundance of avoidable legal troubles, a weak candidate experience, and even interviewer burnout.

In a study by CareerBuilder, 1 in 5 interviewers said they feel rushed to make hiring decisions, despite being ill-equipped to do so. And with 1 in 6 job offers getting rejected these days, something’s gotta give.

As a talent acquisition leader, putting in the time and work to attract new members to your company in a competitive, candidate-driven market is tough — especially if you’re carrying most of the interview logistics load on your own.

But with an amazing interviewer training program, you can lighten the load for yourself as well as any other interviewers on your team. Great interviews generate higher offer acceptance rates, level up the quality of your hiring decisions, and create a stronger candidate experience — all in a way that’s both successful and scalable. And great interviews start with amazing interviewer training. Here are four ways to get started.

1. Predetermine Job Competencies

Interviewers should never walk into an interview without knowing exactly what they’re looking for first.

Armed with a vision for what success looks like in the role they’re trying to fill, interviewers can then turn attention to evaluating their interviewees fairly and effectively. But without a picture of the ideal candidate, interviewers risk making decisions that are bad or biased — or worse, both.

As a hiring leader, you can set your entire interview team up for success by providing hiring criteria tied directly to job-specific skills and competencies, helping interviewers to avoid decisions based on the personal, demographic, or lifestyle chatter that often comes up during ad hoc interviews.

To get started, ask yourself these questions:

  • Are there any professional certifications or knowledge requirements that are critical to the job?
  • Are there any technical skills required for the new hire to have that can’t be trained on-the-job?
  • Which soft skills will make a candidate successful in this role? (Think communication skills, time management, ability to work independently, problem solving, ability to manage a team, etc.)

Then, create templates for your interview team, and store them in an easily accessible place, like a shared drive.

Everyone benefits from interview preparation: the company, the candidates, and the interviewers.

2. Mitigate Implicit Biases and Illegal Practices

Even with the utmost preparation, interviews can still go off the rails when an interviewer inadvertently asks illegal questions, or makes inappropriate comments.

Assuming that the interviewers already know which interview questions are “right” and “wrong” is the first mistake many hiring leaders make when it comes to legal compliance. To prevent discriminatory interview practices — whether intentional or not — TA leaders should educate their team about current hiring laws.

After carefully preselecting the job-specific criteria for each role, try creating an up-to-date list of questions and topics to avoid during interviews, including anything related to a candidate’s age, race, ethnicity, ability, gender, sexual orientation, religion, relationship status, or personal finances.

For example, instead of asking about the candidate’s country of origin, cue interviewers to instead ask if the interviewee is eligible to work in the country where the job duties need to be performed. In lieu of asking if their religion would keep them from working on weekends or certain holidays, explain any scheduling requirements for the position, and ask if there are conflicts with their availability. Instead of asking candidates if they have any disabilities, ask if they’re capable of performing any physical demands of the job at hand.

With interviewer training on how to stick to appropriate topics, hiring leaders and interviewers can both feel confident about their interactions with candidates.

3. Leverage Technology

While legal compliance is critical, there’s more to an amazing interview than just following the rules. By employing technology to support the administrative parts of an interview, hiring leaders can empower interviewers to increase the quality and fairness of their interviews even further. 

When interviewers get bogged down with back and forth scheduling and rescheduling, manually updating the hiring status of each candidate, and managing interviews across various time zones, they have less capacity to focus on more important things. But when technology takes care of the tedious tasks, interviewers are freed up for more valuable work, like building rapport with candidates.

Technology can also be leveraged to put together diverse interview panels. This boosts candidate satisfaction even more. When candidates see themselves represented on an interview panel, and trust they’ll truly be included on their new prospective team, they’re far more likely to continue through to the end of the hiring process. 

What’s more, by representing individuals from a variety of different groups and backgrounds, diverse interview panels lend themselves to higher quality hiring decisions because of the diversity of the interviewer feedback collected. Only then can your team stop making hiring decisions based solely on interviewer intuition, and start making more based on objective, quality interview data.

4. Focus On Candidate Engagement

In a candidate-driven market like this one, hiring leaders should assume that job seekers are interviewing with multiple companies. When that’s the reality, the engagement a candidate gets from your team could be just the advantage you need.

A focus on continuous candidate engagement will give you:

  • Faster turnaround on hiring decisions
  • More high-quality talent in your pipeline
  • A higher number of engaged candidates
  • A larger pool of more diverse candidates
  • More candidates that turn into customers

To level up your candidate engagement, train interviewers to treat your candidates like your customers by giving them the power to self-schedule their interviews. Be sure to also give them plenty of quality feedback throughout the hiring process — even if they don’t get the job.

While candidates who don’t win the job they want may be disappointed, nothing is worse than waiting too long to find out. Not only does hanging in limbo directly affect the candidate experience, it also damages the employer brand. 

On the flip side, hiring teams who reject candidates quickly lessen the pain of rejection, leading to better quality hires and a still-in-tact brand reputation.

Get Serious About Interviewer Training

Remember, more than just a way for companies to sift through potential employees, interviews serve as a way for candidates to get to know possible employers, too. When that interview comes across as hasty or chaotic, a previously inspired and eager candidate can become quickly disillusioned.

But when the interview is friendly and frictionless, candidates and hiring teams alike look forward to effective, efficient hiring experiences.

Train interviewers on how to create an amazing interview experience— then teach them to trust the process.

The time is now to implement interviewer training. GoodTime helps you train interviews with ease, giving you one hiring experience solution that lets you track interviewers and their progress and train them at scale. GoodTime gives you the confidence that your selected interviewers evaluate candidates effectively.

Want to learn more? Get The GoodTime Guide to Interviewer Training. 

5 Ways Your Hiring Process Could Be Failing (And What To Do About It)

A male candidate being interviewed.

To gain an edge in today’s competitive job market,  hiring teams must pull out all the stops. This means leveling up their candidate experience, maxing perks, and demonstrating company values as best they can. These teams are also investing the time to assess both what they’re doing right, as well as what needs to change.

And with only one in five new hires ever reaching success in their new role, it’s clear that something’s gotta give.

If your team experiences new hires who don’t last, or a shortage of candidates altogether, it’s time to take a long, hard look at how you can turn things around.

Here are five ways your hiring process could be missing the mark.

1. Your Hiring Team Is Burned Out

When interviews aren’t spread equitably across a team, the select few who bear the brunt will eventually wear out. 

Especially significant is the fact that oftentimes, the very people facilitating hiring duties double as a team’s highest performers; and while many take pleasure in welcoming new potential employees, burnout can have a negative impact on their productivity, engagement, and overall happiness at work.

Watch how much your URG employees take on. In an effort to meet a company’s DEI goals, employees from diverse backgrounds are often disproportionately tasked with hosting interviews. While diverse interview panels is something GoodTime makes a priority, risking the well-being of your top team members is never worth it.

What to do: Talk to all of your interviewers. How’s their sense of well-being? Is the interview load balanced in an equitable way? Are employees still able to do the job they were hired to do? Is diverse talent carrying a disproportionate amount of hiring duties? If you can’t answer yes to any of those questions, it’s time to make a change.

2. URG Candidates Aren’t Represented

Diversity doesn’t suddenly become important after a candidate starts a new job. It’s critical to blend representation into your candidate experience from day zero.

Your entire hiring experience should be designed to promote inclusion and reduce bias. This gives candidates the assurance that they would be welcomed to the team. The question to ask your hiring team: what barriers do candidates from underrepresented groups run into that give them pause, or cause non acceptance of employment offers?

What to do: Meeting DEI goals isn’t easy, but technology can help. With intelligent interviewer selection, both candidates and interviewers can self-identify as part of a minority group if they choose, then be matched during the interview to someone with common ground. The end result is more inclusion, better candidate engagement, and less biased hiring.

3. Your Interviewers Are Untrained

Nearly 70% of candidates claim that a terrific hiring experience would make them more likely to accept a potential employer’s job offer.

However, more than 1 in 5 hiring managers say they feel rushed to hire quickly, despite not knowing what they’re doing. The way in which interviews are executed — and how candidates perceive these interviews — is mission critical to a successful hiring process.

What to do: Training interviewers doesn’t have to be time-consuming. It simply takes planning and preparation. When armed with a structure to collect unbiased, job-related information, the do’s and don’ts of legal compliance, and an understanding of how to engage with candidates, trained interviewers just might be the edge you need to win over your favorite candidates.

4. Candidates Don’t Feel Empowered

Modern job candidates are looking for a highly personal, easy-to-navigate hiring journey — from start to finish. 

Consider the experience of your candidates. Is yours a seamless process, with plenty of touchpoints and status updates along the way? Or is it a clunky and time consuming one that leaves candidates in hiring purgatory for days or weeks on end?

What to do: One of the best ways to create an appealing hiring experience is to put the candidates themselves in the driver’s seat. With a self-scheduling interview tool, candidates select the best time for them, and technology takes care of the rest. By syncing candidate’s chosen times with the right interviewers, hiring teams can focus on more important work, like engaging candidates in meaningful conversations.

5. You’re Running Into Legal Trouble

But wait. There’s more to great hiring than having a fast, easy process. When rapidly growing companies need to hire quickly, too many neglect something as fundamental as complying with fair and legal hiring practices.

Hiring discrimination is strictly prohibited by federal law and can result in substantial legal fees. But too many interviewers know about hiring laws, without understanding how to comply with them. That’s why untrained interviewers can end up costing their companies an average of $40,000 in discrimination lawsuits.

What to do: To avoid legal fees and discriminatory practices, get serious about training your company’s pool of interviewers. Do your interviewers know what’s “right” and “wrong” when it comes to interview questions? Do they have objective, job-specific criteria to use in evaluations?

Make Changes to Your Hiring Process, Now

Good hiring is good business.

Now more than ever, it’s important to take a step back and reassess how your hiring process is going. When you take the time to build a solid foundation, empower your people, and engage with candidates, your team benefits from less burnout and more great hires.

The time is now to implement interviewer training. GoodTime helps you train interviews with ease, giving you one hiring experience solution that lets you track interviewers and their progress and train them at scale. GoodTime gives you the confidence that your selected interviewers evaluate candidates effectively.

Want to learn more? Download The GoodTime Guide to Interviewer Training

5 Ways to Ward off Employee Burnout

A recruiter experiencing burnout.

An undeniable truth for the hiring world: the COVID-19 pandemic brought about a paradigm shift in the workforce as businesses were forced to pivot to work-from-home overnight. Many increased their layoffs to stay afloat. Amidst these efforts to ensure business continuity, employer-employee relationships and the way they viewed their careers and priorities experienced a drastic change. 

Now, people are more open to career changes, often prioritizing flexibility, company values, and mission-driven work in favor of upward mobility. The rollercoaster of global events upended the state of the workforce and highlighted an underlying issue: employee burnout. Frequency of employees burning out during their work hours at home was accelerated by the uncertainty caused by financial, career and health concerns. In a socially distant world, employees also lack the support and tools to effectively identify and fight disengagement. 

A Closer Look at Addressing Employee Burnout 

With WFH variations setting pace to be the “new normal,” never has employee burnout become a more relevant topic than now, and keeping top talent is paramount. Quality employees are able to secure business objectives, effectively align with company values, and speed up productivity. On the flip side, losing these valuable workers can have a detrimental impact on the organization.

This is especially pertinent as the workforce goes through the Great Resignation – a term to describe the post-pandemic resignation boom. Led by a shift in priorities, the tidal wave of workers leaving their jobs is mostly driven by a desire to feel valued and appreciated by their employers. 

Through these changes, TA teams are inundated with hiring more people, picking up the slack of those who have left and continuing to do their own work while not compromising on their own performance. For the employees picking up more than they can carry, burnout is imminent. Unfortunately, this is also a driving factor for many to start looking at new opportunities. 

Employers must do more to keep their employees satisfied in order to secure quality hires. One of the main issues that has long plagued the workforce: a lack of mental health support. 

With employee burnout and disengagement posing a serious threat to business health, how can talent leaders tackle flight risks effectively?

Keep a Reasonable Work Schedule (And Work Load!)

With WFH blurring the lines between personal and professional life, it can be hard to tell when it’s closing time. In fact, studies have shown that remote workers tend to experience burnouts more than their on-site counterparts. Perhaps this is due to juggling work and home life simultaneously, in addition to family or pets.

Even in the office, workers are often expected to stay past the usual 9-to-5 just to fulfill manager or customer expectations. They end up feeling pressured by work, and in turn, can have a negative effect on quality and productivity. Enforcing office hours, even in remote situations, can go a long way in promoting a healthy work/life balance.

For hiring teams trying to maximize quality interviewers, interviewer training and load balancing the interview workload is critical to stave off burnout of top performing employees (ie, the folks who do most of the interviewing.)

Raise Mental Health Awareness

Employee burnout is not new. More often than not, employees themselves do not realize what they’re experiencing before it’s too late. They may just attribute this to general exhaustion or a lack of motivation, without acknowledging its severity. 

Normalize vocalization of mental health issues in the workplace. This can encourage employees who are feeling overwhelmed to speak out. Proactiveness on the employer’s part can also identify flight risks and potential burnouts.

Keep Communication Constant

Detachment from a job can happen due to a lack of support and a close relationship with their peers. Employees who work in silos may have feelings of separation and loneliness. To prevent this, it is important for managers to keep a constant line of communication. 

Schedule weekly meetings to check in on teams, manage expectations and receive feedback. Bonding sessions are a great way to build closer relationships between teams, essentially forming a robust support system for employees.

Encourage PTO and R&R 

Taking time off work can do wonders for an employee’s well being. Encourage employees to use their vacation days so that they are not constantly working. GoodTime offers flexible R&R for all employees who need to take time off, whether it’s for a vacation or just a mental health day. 

During this time, ensure that you have enough resources to manage without them. It can be frustrating for an employee when they are still required to tend to work matters, or even worse, cut short their off days to return to their desk.

Lead by Example

The chances are that your employees are spending one-third of their day in the office. It is crucial that this is an environment that they are safe and comfortable in. Promote mindfulness and a healthy work/life balance by creating an environment that employees want to work in. This can be through company initiatives, such as benefits like wellness programs. It can also be as simple as providing workers with a comfortable space, such as using ergonomic chairs or a pleasing interior design.

While burnout has a direct impact on employees, it can lead to devastating effects on business performance. Managers and leaders play a key role in warding off employee burnout. As we continue to navigate the new era of work, we must be prepared to embrace new solutions and adapt to survive.

GoodTime Transforms Interviewer Training 

It’s time to make a shift toward candidate-centered, connection-driven interviews. Learn more about how to make that happen for your team to win top talent faster. 

The True Cost of a Bad Hire

Recruiter frustrated because of a bad hire.

There’s no question that employees are the number one resource at any given company. Plainly: they’re the ones getting it done to nail business objectives that ultimately lead to success.

However, if a company hires a candidate who turns out to be a wrong fit for the role, it could bring about dire costs — and not just speaking financially. Unqualified candidates could potentially waste the time and energy of managers and existing employees in any organization, which in turn, can deteriorate culture and team dynamic.

Studies have revealed that hiring the wrong candidate can costs up to $240,000. This happens more than you might think. 74% of employers stated that they have had bad hires. Not to mention, that’s also a colossal amount of money to blow on someone who doesn’t bring value to the company.

The case with bad hires isn’t as simple as it seems. In fact, the cost can be broken down into several aspects, from sourcing, interviewing, hiring and rehiring. All these associated costs add up to the real cost of a bad hire. The good thing is that these costs are avoidable. 

So, what is the real cost of hiring the wrong fit for the role? Why is it so essential to business success that managers have to get it right the first time?

The Financial Impact of Poor Quality Hires

Direct Financial and Time Cost of a Bad Hire

When a bad hire is brought in, it means that the entire recruitment process adds up to your losses. Essentially, you’re looking at the potential cost of:

  • Writing and reviewing job postings
  • Hiring a recruiter or paying for ad space on job boards
  • Screening candidates for background and work experience
  • Reaching out and communicating with candidates, following up after interviews
  • Scheduling interviews and dealing with last-minute cancellations
  • Finding the right interviewers to conduct interviews
  • Time spent waiting for qualified candidates to respond
  • Negotiating offers

When it comes to the usual work hours, multiple interviews can end up taking up a bulk of your time. The average employer interviews six to ten candidates per job, with each candidate going through two to three rounds of interviews. If each interview goes on for 45 minutes to an hour, it could eat into more than half the work week for the typical office worker. 

These days, there are a myriad of alternatives to the hour-long back and forth interview process. Interview technology makes it possible to use machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) to conduct asynchronous interviews. Basically, employers don’t have to sit through tedious screening of resumes and background checks anymore. However, to truly build a connection with candidates, it is crucial to at least conduct a face-to-face interview before finalizing the new hire.

Cost of Replacing the Bad Hire

Considering that all this is done to hire the bad fit in the first place, now you have to do it all over again to replace them. This means writing new job postings, buying more ad space, and screening candidates to find the right fit. 

Additionally, you are looking at the associated costs of training and onboarding the new hires. Any time an employee joins a new company, they’ll usually go through a substantial amount of training and onboarding during their first few weeks or months. When you are essentially investing a good amount of knowledge and resources into nurturing a new employee, it means that all this goes to waste when they do not generate any returns for your company.

It is also worth noting that the employee doesn’t necessarily get terminated right away, even after realizing that they may not be the best staff for the job. While there is usually a learning curve, a bad hire is someone that falls short of expectations even after. This could mean being unable to perform tasks or having a negative attitude. Bad hires usually complete their probation period, if any, and move on to being a permanent role. During this time, productivity fails to hit optimal levels, and customers get frustrated. This adds on to the price that companies have to pay for bad hires. 

Emotional Cost of a Bad Hire

It’s important not to just look at quantifiable costs. Besides monetary costs, the wrong type of employee could lead to productivity and morale loss that stunts business growth.

Besides losing out on important accounts and clients, hiring the wrong employee has a substantial impact on internal staff and culture. Not only does a bad hire negatively impact the HR department, this can ripple out into the other teams as well.

Whether it is due to making up for a lack of skills, disengagement, or frustration with the new employee, other employees of the organization have the potential to be affected by a less-than-desirable hire. At the very least, this would lead to tension among employees. On the other hand, if left unaddressed, employers run the risk of losing a few good employees.

Team members are expected to work together towards organizational goals. However, when there is a certain employee that pulls down the team and affects the harmony and collaboration, it could lead to a plunge in motivation and engagement. Engagement is, after all, highly contagious.

Impact on Interviewer Experience

A CareerBuilder survey found that 22% of interviewers did not have the relevant expertise in hiring effectively. More often than not, interviewers may lack the experience or knowledge to hire and interview candidates. This could mean asking the wrong questions or missing important red flags in a potential talent. Perhaps this could be because the need for talent came on a short notice and hiring managers lacked preparation. 

Seeing that bad hires create exceptional damage, it’s crucial for business success that this process is done right. Moving forward, interviewer training programs should be implemented to help an organization and its employees, protecting their time, budget and culture.

GoodTime Transforms Interviewer Training 

It’s time to make a shift toward candidate-centered, connection-driven interviews. Learn more about how to make that happen for your team to win top talent faster.