When interviewing candidates, you are looking for more than just a person to occupy a seat; you want to find the right applicant who will help your business flourish. Failing to ask probing interview questions can leave you ill-equipped to identify which candidate will help truly support your best business practices.
Before you meet with your next interviewee, consider asking questions that dig deeper into these topics to help you get the information you need to make the best decision for your business.
Teamwork and Cooperation – How Did You Respond When Your Idea was Rejected?
Most positions in the software development lifecycle require working well with others. Regretfully, when asked directly, most people will assert their virtues when working with others – even if it is inaccurate. To help determine their ability to work on group goals and their willingness to compromise, ask the candidate to discuss a time when, while working on a project, their idea was rejected and another was chosen. This will show how they deal with disappointment as well as their ability to move forward, even if they don’t feel the best idea was chosen.
You can expand on this idea by asking for an example of how they managed when something didn’t go their way, like being passed over for a promotion or a project falling off track. While it doesn’t explicitly ask about teamwork, the answer can be quite illuminating. If the applicant responds by blaming others, then teamwork may not be the strength they claim it to be.
Past Performance – Tell Me About a Specific Accomplishment
While past performance doesn’t guarantee future success, by examining certain accomplishments closely, you can determine if a candidate seems like a good fit for the job duties. Ask them to review a specific accomplishment that makes them uniquely prepared to thrive in the position for which they are interviewing. If there’s a particular tech skill you’d like to hear about, now would be a good time to specify that.
Most candidates should be able to offer up at least one example, if not more. Those who can’t may not have the experience or drive necessary to thrive. Additionally, if they provide an example that does not match the requirements of the job, then they may not be a good fit.
The Bottom Line – How Have You Impacted An Employer Financially?
Business is always focused on the bottom line. While you may have little success asking candidates to describe situations where they cost an employer money, you should expect numerous examples if you ask them the opposite. Consider having them provide examples of when a recent project allowed the business to perform better, faster, more efficiently or less expensively.
Applicants who have multiple examples are likely to support changes that result in improved business practices. They also tend to be problem-solvers that understand the need to keep costs in check so that customers can get the most value from the business.
Questions to Ask Yourself
As the interview progresses, you need to make sure you have the answers you require. As an interviewer, you should be analyzing the candidate based on the following qualifications: technical capability, motivation, manageability, and organizational fit.
As the applicant answers your core questions, take the time to determine if the personal is capable of completing the work required. You also need to figure out if they are properly motivated to do the work and if they seem to be manageable based on their personality type and previous workplace experiences. Finally, you need to assess if they are a cultural fit with your organization.
If you review these areas, and the interviewee seems lacking, then they may not be the ideal choice.
Need Help Narrowing the Field?
It can often be hard to find the best IT candidates among a sea of resumes. That’s where ESP can help. The professionals at ESP can provide the expertise you need to help find high-potential candidates for your open positions. Contact ESP today for more information.
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