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4 steps to building an effective Interviewer Training Program

  • By Ankush Jhawar
  • April 18, 2024
  • 6 mins read
BarRaiser helps you train your interviewers and provide contextual feedbacks.
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    Conducting compelling interviews is crucial to a company’s success. That’s because one of the most critical decisions a company can make is who to hire.

    A poor interview process can lead to missing out on valuable employees. Companies need to create benchmarks based on their top-performing interviewers and hiring partners to ensure they’re hiring the best candidates. However, without the right tools or framework, it can be challenging for organizations to know what a good interview looks like.

    For training the interviewers and recruiters, companies are beginning to build structured interviewer training programs to ensure that everyone involved in the hiring process conducts quality interviews.

    We recently talked to the recruiting and talent acquisition teams at the forefront of this effort to get an inside look at how they built their programs. What did we learn? Interviewer training is an essential but often overlooked part of the hiring process.
    There are two reasons for this.

    First, when an organization doesn’t have much training, hiring goals often take priority, and interviewer training takes a backseat.

    Second, as organizations try to conduct training, it can be hard to manage at scale, which can slow down training cycles or lead to abandoning the process altogether in favor of hiring needs.

    Because of these challenges, 41% of recruiters and hiring partners find it challenging to assess candidates during interviews. But don’t worry. At BarRaiser, we’ve developed a four-step process to create an effective interviewer training program. Keep reading to learn more.

    What is an interviewer training program?

    An interviewer training program is well-crafted and uses proven techniques and communication skills to train interviewers, recruiters, and hiring partners. Good interviewer training should include functional interview skills, basic principles of psychology, recognition of prejudice, mock interviews with feedback, and a job interview checklist. This training helps interviewers build trust with candidates and covers questions that interviewers should ask and avoid to stay on track and prevent mistakes during an interview.

    Who should participate in Interview Training?

    Anyone working in a role that allows them to participate in conducting interviews should attend interviewer training. This includes

    • Business Owners, founders
    • Functional managers
    • Hiring managers
    • Department heads
    • Personnel department
    • Recruiters
    • Squad Leaders
    • College Admissions Staff

    Also Read: Important Recruitment Metrics You Must Track In 2023

    Building an effective interviewer training program

    To create an effective interviewer training program, follow these four steps:

    Assess the company’s hiring requirements

    When presenting your interview training idea, explain how your interviewers will benefit from this type of training and the requirements for hiring. For example, you could explain that using the strategies you covered in your training makes interviewers feel more confident and gain better insight. This can lead to more robust interviews and successful hiring and admission decisions.

    Schedule a meeting with your hiring manager to discuss the status of the hiring process. Give them pointers on what they can do better. Provide good interview training for hiring managers. Research allows you to add weight to your recommendations. If you want to convince hiring managers to try structured interviews, you can show research findings that show structured interviews are a great recruiting tool. Invite the person conducting the interview and anyone who may attend the interview. Also, anyone who is interested can take the course. Targeted interpersonal and professional skills can be applied to many types of interactions.

    Analyze the top interviewers to benchmark

    If you have experience interviewing candidates and feel you have leadership potential, you can lead the interviewer training. Also, an interviewer needs to set some benchmarks. Benchmarking is profiling the ideal candidate for a position and measuring all candidates against it. Consider outsourcing your training to a company offering professional interview workshops and materials.

    Other cost-saving options include:

    • Attend training sessions together outside the office.
    • Hire a freelance consultant or trainer.
    • Check out the materials and resources available from small business organizations in your area. Ask local professors who teach staff courses if they have graduate students they can recommend to lead the training.

    In addition to increasing candidate engagement, you can use the right technology to assemble a diverse interview panel, further increasing candidate satisfaction. Leveraging AI-powered tools like BarRaiser can help companies build interactive and effective interview training programs.

    Also Read: Explained: What Are Game Based Assessments?

    Mitigate bias and illegality from the process

    Even with the best preparation, an interview can get out of hand if the interviewer accidentally asks an illegal question or makes an inappropriate comment.

    It’s the first mistake many recruiters make regarding regulatory compliance, assuming the interviewer already knows if the interview question is “right” or “wrong.”

    Self-awareness is required to avoid biased interviews and hiring. While self-awareness seems matter-of-fact, it’s astonishing how rare it is. One can look at different tools to eliminate bias in interviewing and decision-making.

    After selecting job-specific criteria for each role, develop an up-to-date list of interview questions and topics to avoid, including age, race, ethnicity, abilities, gender, sexual orientation, the candidate’s religion, relationship status, or personal financial situation.

    For example, instead of asking about the applicant’s country of origin, the interviewer should ask whether the respondent is eligible to work in the country where they are required to perform the job.

    Additionally, recruiters should provide feedback as soon as possible for the conversation to stay afresh and take rigorous notes. In a world where virtual interviews are a norm, recording & transcribing the interviews can be a great way to keep the conversation afresh and focus more on the interview, rather than note-taking.

    Training that sticks to only relevant topics will help interviewers feel confident working with candidates (and the experience they provide).

    Also Read: 5 Most Common Interview Questions And How To Answer Them

    Evaluate and adjust the training program

    A candidate’s experience is essential because you want your reputation as an employer to stand out. It’s critical for candidates who couldn’t apply for a job. Their experience in the selection process determines whether they apply for another position at your company. To increase candidate engagement, train interviewers to treat candidates like clients by allowing them to schedule their interviews. Also, provide quality feedback throughout the hiring process, even if they still need to get the job.

    Candidates who don’t get the job can be disappointed, but nothing is worse than taking too long to find one. It will also hurt. So, a good candidate experience makes candidates feel comfortable in your company after seeing how you treat them. You can share your good feelings with others, which helps build your reputation. On the other hand, if your candidate has a poor experience, they won’t respect you as an employer or a brand.

    Here are some best practices for the candidate experience.

    • Hire to meet your real needs.
    • Write a clear job description.
    • Make it easy for applicants to apply for your position.
    • Follow up early and often.
    • Communicate with (and thank) candidates at every stage of the hiring process. Give candidates information about what to expect in an interview.
    • Pay close attention to the candidate during the interview.
    • Tell the candidate as soon as possible when you are no longer considering the candidate.
    • If you want to keep an eye on specific candidates for future vacancies, keep an eye on them.

    Also Read: Revolutionize Your Hiring Process With AI-Driven Pre-Employment Assessments

    [Bonus!] Get candidate feedback

    Fearing legal issues, companies often hesitate to give specific feedback to rejected candidates. You can counteract these fears by carefully structuring your feedback. Candidates value particular information about their application, and as they progress later in the hiring process, they are more likely to expect specific, personalized feedback provided in an open and friendly manner. This feedback helps job seekers be more strategic in their job search and decide if they want to pursue another role with you.

    Asking candidates for feedback can also help. Candidate experience surveys help frame questions and hold yourself accountable for improving the candidate experience. However, if you ask candidates for honest feedback, be prepared to give them exactly that!

    Also Read: Navigating HR Challenges: Recruitment Strategies For Public Sector

    Final thoughts: Effective hiring begins with compelling interviews

    These steps might seem daunting and very hard to implement; this is where leveraging technology comes in handy. BarRaiser, for example, along with your Applicant Tracking System, helps you do all this in no time. It would help if you always relied on data and deep analytics to discover how to deliver personalized training and intervention to the interviewer. AI-based tools like BarRaiser can help you do that!

    A well-thought-out application process gives candidates confidence in your company. Any friction raises new questions in mind. And if the front-runners come home with enough suspicion, they may hesitate when an offer comes along.

    A team of well-trained interviewers can find the best candidates for your team. That means they are more likely to stay with your company longer. Organizations with large cohorts of interviewers have a more balanced interview load. This means employees have more time to focus on the projects they come to work on.

    Streamline your processes and focus on creating a more meaningful and impactful candidate experience. BarRaiser works with her 200+ companies worldwide to help structure interviews. Give interviewers all the tools and resources they need to evaluate candidates more effectively and encourage them to treat every candidate like a VIP. If you don’t give the best candidates a reason to say no, you’re one step closer to the question, “When should I start?”

    Also Read: 5 Important Interview Techniques That’ll Help You Get Hired

    People also asked for

    What Should Interview Training Include?

    It’s always a good idea to cover the interview basics, so everyone has the same basic knowledge. Every interviewer should know questions not to ask during an interview, how to avoid unconscious bias, and how to recognize non-verbal cues from candidates during an interview.

    Why is recruiter training essential?

    Interviewer training is an integral part of a sound hiring system. Well-trained interviewers protect your company from unintentional discrimination and ensure a consistent, positive process that leads to better hiring.

    What is an interview training program?

    Interview skills training focuses on the skills needed to conduct engaging interviews with practical questions. In this way, hiring managers or interviewers can ensure they follow best practices for hiring suitable candidates with the right skills, attitudes, and mindsets.

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