Interviewing and Hiring

Interviewing and evaluating applicants can be challenging and is a critical step in the recruitment/hiring process. The search committee, based on the job description, should identify key competencies (see examples listed below), which will help provide criteria for evaluating applicants as well as developing interview and reference- checking questions. To ensure interviews are conducted correctly, the search committee should follow an organized and consistent approach. The search committee should ask the same questions of each candidate, follow the same format, and ask questions that are job related. The search committee should know what questions can and cannot be asked during the interview process. Please refer to the Affirmative Action Guidelines for Search Committees. If an applicant volunteers information that is not job related, the information should not be used for the selection decision.

Competency examples for evaluating criteria:

  • Job-related education and/or experience
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Problem-solving skills
  • Communication skills
  • Listening skills
  • Customer service skills
  • Planning and organization skills
  • Technical knowledge/skills
  • Teamwork

Search Committee Members

  • Review interview process with search committee.
  • Provide relevant information about the position (position description).
  • Run through interview format, schedule, and timeline.
  • Supply each interviewer with a list of questions and paper for taking notes.
  • Discuss expectation of confidentiality.
  • Provide a copy of the Affirmative Action Guidelines for Search Committees.
  • Document search process by keeping appropriate records (i.e., interview notes, reference checks).

Conducting the Interview

  • Sample Interview Questions
  • Review candidate's application materials before interview.
  • Greet the applicant, put him/her at ease. If comfortable, the candidate will more likely share information with you.
  • Briefly explain the interview process.
  • Ask prepared questions.
  • Do not ask leading questions or ones that require a yes or no answer.
  • Ask job-related questions that will facilitate discussion.
  • Take notes.
  • Listen to the candidate without interrupting.
  • Watch candidate's body language and facial expressions.
  • Give candidate an opportunity to ask questions.
  • Inform applicant of the timeline and follow up.
  • Close the interview.