Make a Great First Impression!

In this candidate-driven market it’s just as important for you to make a great impression on the candidate, as it is for the candidate to try and impress you! The top talent won’t struggle for offers, so they’ll be judging each business they visit, not just on their credentials but also on the selection and interview process, and the individuals they meet throughout it. Take each stage and think about how your business comes across.

Arrival

Candidates will judge you and your business as soon as they walk through the door. Often it’s just a case of being prepared and making time for the interview process. Leaving a candidate waiting too long in reception can make it appear like their visit is very low down on your list of priorities, and give the individual a poor impression of your business. Ensure you have a meeting room identified for your use, so you don’t end up trailing the candidate around the business, and have all the necessary materials and paperwork to hand. Even little things like offering a candidate a drink can give a great impression, as it shows you’re considering how comfortable they are in your surroundings.

During the Interview

Ensure you involve strong individuals from your business in the interview process, who can speak knowledgeably and encouragingly about the role and the business. Think about what questions the individual might have and make sure you have the answers readily available. Throughout the interview ensure you’re listening to the responses of the candidate, and engaging in a real conversation rather than working rigidly from a pre-prepared list of questions. Don’t rush the interview; give the candidate a chance to ask any questions they might have.

Post–Interview

Following the interview, ensure you continue to handle your relationship with all candidates professionally. Be clear at the end of the interview of the next steps that every candidate should expect and an idea of the timescales. Try and stick to timescales where possible, taking the time to communicate if things are going a little slower than planned. Once you’ve made your decision, inform the successful candidate and ensure you have all the package details to hand so you can really sell the role. Also take the time to inform the unsuccessful candidates, so they are left with a positive impression of the business.

Peter Forshaw – Managing Director, Maxwell Stephens

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