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Three Ways Organizations Can Reinvigorate Their Interview Process

If the last update your organization made to its interview process was the introduction of online interviews back in 2020, then it may be time to revisit your plan!

Organizations that are thriving in today’s competitive talent market are trying new and different ways to engage with candidates during the interview process – online and in person. Here are three tips for reinvigorating your interview process from the executive search experts at DRiWaterstone:

  1. Lead with culture. This starts with talking about culture on your careers page and in your job descriptions. Let candidates know up front what to expect when working with your organization and then demonstrate this in your interview process. If you say your culture is transparent and trust-based, how do you demonstrate that in the interview process? If you’re focused on diversity, equity, and inclusion, make sure your interview panel reflects that. Leading with culture gives candidates a picture of what they can expect if they join the team – and it gives you a chance to assess their behaviors against your culture pillars too.
  2. Send candidates (some of) your questions in advance. This is a great way to help put candidates at ease and to offer a more inclusive interview experience – one that accommodates a greater variety of personalities and styles and allows candidates to put their best foot forward. You’ll get more useful information out of a prepared candidate than someone fighting nerves, and follow up questions and small talk still leave room to dive deeper on key points and get to know how the candidate aligns to your purpose and culture. Need more convincing? See this article from LinkedIn.
  3. Try an immersive experience. This is an opportunity to observe the day-to-day reality of the job, meet and interact with the team, and get a hands-on sense for whether this is a good fit – for both the candidate and the employer. Consider having your top candidate spend some time in the office, give them the opportunity to talk to other employees about the organization and the role, ask them to join a team social event, reserve them a spot at a company-hosted event, or hold an interview in an unconventional location (e.g., a walking interview at your local park). Not only does this give candidates an inside view of your organization and your culture, it lets you see how they react in different situations, how they adapt to new challenges, and how they fit with your company culture.

Need more help taking your interview process to the next level? The executive search experts at DRiWaterstone Human Capital can help. Click to book a meeting and learn more about how we help leading non-profit and social impact organizations across the U.S. find and retain top talent.

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By Jennifer Dunlap, President and CEO, DRiWaterstone Human Capital

In today’s employment market, things are moving incredibly fast. The number of available opportunities has grown significantly over the last few years, giving candidates more options as they search for a role and an employer that aligns with their individual purpose and goals.

According to the Pew Research Centre, “2.5% of workers – about 4 million – switched jobs on average each month from January to March 2022.” And those job changes were happening fast. LinkedIn’s 2022 hiring trends found that top candidates are “off the market in 10 days” and that a majority of candidates believe the turn-around time from first interview to job offer should take “less than two weeks.”

Hiring committees that don’t react to market conditions when building out their talent acquisition strategy risk losing out on top candidates. It’s something the executive search team at DRiWaterstone Human Capital is seeing more and more in our work with non-profit or social impact clients who have been having trouble winning the race for talent.  

Thorough, thoughtful talent acquisition processes make sense given that the cost of a bad hire is up to 30 per cent of the employee’s first-year earnings (according to one estimate by the U.S. Department of Labor). But in today’s market, slow processes can hinder more than help your recruitment process.

Three barriers to winning the talent race:

  • Over interviewing
    We’ve all had an over interviewing experience – where you feel like you’re being asked to meet everyone in the organization before a decision can be made. Hiring committees need to be confident their top candidate(s) meet the skills requirements for the role and that they’ll align to the purpose and culture of the organization, but in today’s market that assessment must happen in an efficient manner. Determine who absolutely must meet each candidate and then look for opportunities to streamline your process (e.g., introducing panel interviews if appropriate). The candidate and your existing team will thank you.
  • Scheduling delays
    From finding time in busy calendars to unexpected requests to reschedule, scheduling delays can wreak havoc with your hiring plans. Whether you reserve blocks of time for potential interviews during the hiring window or offer off-hours times (e.g., after work or on weekends), leaders need to be as flexible as possible when it comes to scheduling in order to reduce delays and move candidates though the process in an efficient manner.
  • Holding on too long
    In a candidate-driven market like we’re seeing today, there’s no time to wait and see if someone else comes along who is a closer skills match or just a bit more aligned with your purpose. Holding on too long sends a message to the candidate that you’re unsure and makes it easier for them to take their job search elsewhere. If you’ve found a candidate you like, move them forward or make your offer as soon as you’re confident in their ability to do the job and drive results for your team.  

Work with experts in recruiting and retaining talent

Working with an experienced executive recruitment team is a great way to keep your search on track and ensure you’re able to find and hire top talent who is aligned to your purpose and has the skills needed to help you meet your revenue and performance goals. DRiWaterstone Human Capital’s team has more than 20 years of experience working with mission and purpose-driven clients in the non-profit and social impact space. Book a call with one of our search experts today and let us help you win top candidates.

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