How To Run a Great Interview Process

It isn’t breaking news that interviews are just as much about the interviewee gauging if the opportunity is right for them as it is the other way around. Whether you are a seasoned interviewer or new to the interview process, our advice on creating the best possible candidate experience at interview will help you have a far more successful hiring experience and add great credence to your company brand.


Identify what your business really needs and then deliver it. You’re not hiring to fill a role, your hiring to gain a specific result. You don’t need an areas sales manager – you need someone who can hit targets and sell. Determining what successfully meeting this need looks like will allow you to tailor your interview process and find the person most suited to your needs.



To fully prepare for an interview, candidates need and deserve to know the facts. You should communicate to them what to expect, when, where and from whom. It is unfair to expect a candidate to deal with unnecessary tricks and uncertainties that may hinder their chances of success.


The ability to foster compelling conversation comes from having something worth discussing. Take the time to truly study the CV and LinkedIn profile of your interviewee, focusing on not just their qualifications but also on what it indicates about the candidate’s personality, goals and career aspirations. Question why they may have left one role for another or if your role is logical for their career path.


Doing poorly in an interview doesn’t automatically mean the candidate won’t excel in the position you are recruiting for. Several factors can lead to an otherwise great candidate not making a great first impression, being hesitant or nervous. It is the interviewer’s responsibility to get the best from the candidate, something which is easier after a bit of research. Compliment a couple of their achievements, Ask a question about outside interests or a couple of easy questions to help gain confidence and settle in.


Whilst every interview should follow a set of structured questions, the most noteworthy responses come from the follow up questions. Listen to the initial answer and then ask a question which encourages the candidate to expand: what did you learn? What would you do differently? Not only will you get past the generic responses, you’ll also become privy to responses the candidate never planned to share.


The candidate shouldn’t have to ask about the next steps. Explain what the process is, when it will happen and how you will go about it.


Failing to follow up with a candidate after interview is unprofessional and reflects poorly on your business. Contact candidates when they have been unsuccessful or if the process gets delayed for any reason. Every candidate deserves closure and it’s the right thing to do.

Further Reading:

How Robust Is Your Recruitment Process?

Create A Great Candidate Experience

Get The Best From Your Recruitment Agency

Copeland help automotive businesses get the recruitment process right.  We use a structured process – based on 18 years’ experience – to source, qualify and select the right candidates within our clients’ timescales.

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