Leveraging Software to Drive Effective Interviewing

By Posted in - Interviewing on March 14th, 2013 0 Comments

There are many reasons why it is difficult to drive effective interviewing in an organization. Perhaps the largest being line managers’ resistance to structure and standardized interviewing practices. However, there are other significant barriers that exist that can be removed by leveraging technology.

Three biggest barriers to effective interviewing that can be solved by technology are:

1. Time and difficulty in constructing well-designed behavioral interview guides

It takes time to construct a well-designed behavioral interview guide. Competency requirements for the position need to be identified and prioritized and interview questions prepared. Constructing interview questions can be a difficult and time consuming process. Each question must have a clear connection to a competency requirement for the position and effectively elicit descriptions of past behaviors in situations that are similar to the situations that will be faced on the job. The questions should contain superlative descriptions like “the best, the worst, the most demanding, etc.”

Technology can be used to overcome these barriers. What is required is a data base of proven behavioral questions tied to comprehensive competency models. There should be a competency model for each level of leadership as well as different types of individual contributors. Users would be able to select a competency model and identify which competencies they wish to include in the interview process as well as their relative criticality. The application would automatically assign interview questions to the competencies and interviewers in accordance with the criticality ratings. More time and attention would be devoted to competencies that were seen as the most critical for job success. Users would be able to review the assigned questions and make question substitutions from the data base. This technology enabled approach would make constructing professional interview guides both fast and easy.

2. Time and difficulty in facilitating data integration sessions to arrive at summary ratings

Another difficult task is integrating the data gathered on a candidate across the various interviewers. Too often the integration discussion is reduced to a single summary conclusion in response to the question, “What did you think?” A best practice is to have each member of the rating team share their competency ratings and the behavioral evidence that was gathered to support their conclusion. Often ratings are posted on a flip chart so the team can see each person’s inputs. The team then discusses the total pool of data gathered to arrive at a consensus summary rating for each competency. However, this process takes time and is particularly difficult if the interviewers are not at a common location.

Technology can again overcome these barriers. An application could capture the rating inputs of each interviewer electronically and display the various ratings on a single grid. This grid could be shared with each interviewer via the Internet and the data integration discussion could be held in a virtual environment. Consensus ratings could easily be recorded and stored along with supportive rationale in a report that would help support compliance requirements and mitigate risks. Data integration would be easy and effective, driving better candidate evaluations and decisions.

3. Difficulty in identifying interviewers in need of remedial interviewer training and being able to efficiently provide that training

It is difficult to know how effective or calibrated your interviewers are since you are not able to actually witness their performance. However, it is essential that interviewers evaluate candidates accurately if quality hiring decisions are to be made. With technology, interviewer ratings are captured as well as the summary consensus ratings. It is easy for the application to flag interviewers whose ratings are consistently different than the group’s consensus ratings. Furthermore, it is easy to report on the pattern of ratings displayed … too lenient, too harsh, central tendency, etc.

Technology also can provide a just in time response to the need for remedial interviewer training. Self-study interviewer e-training can be provided with instructional videos and self-study workbooks, including skill practices.

Technology is not the solution for all barriers to effective interviewing but leveraging technology can certainly solve these three.

If you are interested in learning how OMNIview can assist you in effectively implementing behavioral interviewing, please call us at 877.426.6222. Practical and affordable interview management software with efficient interviewer training can quickly convert bad interviewing practices into best practices.

Patrick Hauenstein, Ph.D.

About Patrick Hauenstein, Ph.D.

Patrick Hauenstein is the President and Chief Science Officer for OMNIview. During his free time Pat likes to cook. He is particularly fond of traditional southern cuisine. Pat is also an animal lover ...
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