Interview techniques

Interviewing is an important skill for journalists because this is the way that they use to get information, however, if you have to do an interview and you are not a journalist, you must have good interview techniques to select the handiest and the most qualified persons.

There are a large number of aspects to take into account to prepare you as the interviewer, for example:

Interview techniques
  • It is important re-read the CV or the application form, person specification and job description with the purpose to identify areas which need clarification or exploration.
  • Interviews must have enough time to make some notes in each one. It is important that each candidate has the same period of time in the interview.
  • You must have an appropriate interview format; you must allocate the subject areas among team members, and also must identify the right questions for a job.
  • The appointment panel must agree how they will operate during the interview, also you must have planned everything and not use the first interview as a "dress rehearsal" or it could be accused of not being fair.
  • It is also important to adapt a space to the interviews, with an appropriate size, which favors the interviewee's concentration, comfortable for both interviewees and interviewers (consider: heating, seating, lighting, noise level and ventilation), and have a waiting room containing information about the organization.
  • You should note that the space where the interviews will be conducted should be adjustable to the interviewee's needs because some of them will have disabilities and other needs.
  • One of the key factors for a good interview is the total concentration therefore an interview should not have any kind of interruptions and all mobile phones must be turned off during this length of time.
  • All candidates must feel included, so the seating arrangement must be as inclusive as possible.

There are some aspects to consider in preparing a candidate

  • You must report the date of the interview and the panel composition to each candidate, and if it is possible to give a brief tour the place of work before the interview.
  • Candidates should have enough information about the organization, the post and the requirements of the post before the interview.

The candidates can be helped at the start of the interview by

  • The Convener can put name cards in front of the members, introduce the panel, length of the interview and explain the structure.
  • The panel can inform what notes will be taken to ensure a fair assessment, put the candidate at ease and ask whether they have any queries after the introduction.
  • The interviewer should use an opening non-discriminatory 'warm-up' question.

Below there are some interrogation techniques

The purpose of an interview is to obtain information, so an effective interview depends on well-structured and well-thought questions. There are several types of questions that you have to consider as interviewer such as open, closed multiple, leading, hypothetical, behavioral, probing and reflective.

Open:The importance of these questions is to encourage candidates to start talking. With these questions candidates can provide specific information and facts, express opinions or feelings, describe things, etc.

For example:

  • What do you think about the organization and its structure?
  • What is your good and bad experience with teamwork?
Closed:These questions have a limited number of answers and are habitually either "no" or "yes". You can use these questions to verify the facts.

For example:

  • Do you like teamwork?
  • Did you have responsibility for a team in your last job?
  • Are you available to work overtime on occasion?
Probing:These questions are complementary to the open questions to investigate a specific area in more depth.

For example:

  • How would you do it differently next time?
Behavioral:This type of questions is useful because you can obtain evidence of how an interviewee has handled related situations in the past. It also lets you focus on the specific skills areas of this job.

For example:

  • Can you give me an example of how you solved a conflict in your classroom?
  • We need someone who has good planning skills. How well do you plan ahead?
Reflective:The questions are based on the previous answers. This type of question is powerful, but seldom is used with consistency or skill.

For example:

  • So, you think there could have improvements. What would have altered the outcome?
Leading:These questions suggest the answer expected in the question, so this type of questions is not recommended in an interview.

For example:

  • We need someone who has time to travel. Do you have any restrictions on your ability to travel?
Multiple:In these cases, there are two or more questions at once, and candidates usually respond one of them (the easiest or the heard last). For this reason, these questions are not recommended in an interview.

For example:

  • Why do you want to leave your present job, and why have you applied for this job?

Finally, there are a large number of interview techniques and tips to be taken into account to find competent staff.