Interview preparation will be different for each job category for which you are hiring. The interview setting, for instance, may be different for administrative assistant candidates, technical candidates, sales/marketing candidates, and management candidates. Select an interview setting that would be appropriate for the position.
- An administrative assistant candidate may feel more comfortable in front of a desk with the interviewer(s) facing him or her.
- A technical candidate who has been trained at a computer workstation may be more comfortable meeting in a workstation that is large enough to accommodate 2-3 people. In the geospatial world that often means two large screens with GIS information displayed. Much like the candidate used in his or her education, training, and lab experiences.
- A sales / marketing candidate should expect to meet at a conference table with several people involved in the interview process. This is the setting they will encounter when meeting with your clients or prospective clients.
- Much the same for mid-senior level management candidates. They will spend much of their time dealing with operations on the production floor or at a conference table meeting with staff, other managers, and clients.
Ask questions that are relevant to the position
One size does not fit all when asking questions of candidates. Once again, as in the interview setting, select questions that are relevant to the position.
“Tell us a little about yourself.”
“What made you decide to apply for this position?”
“What do you know about our company?”
“Why do you want to leave your current position?”
Specific to the Job Description:
Administrative Assistant Candidate: “This position requires skills in the MS Office Suite. Please tell us about your experience in each of these such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc..”
Technical candidate: “This position requires skills in ArcGIS, ArcSDE, Python, and related technologies. Please explain your training and experience in these skills and how were they applied?”
Sales / Marketing Candidate: “This position requires successful experience in selling hardware, software, and consulting services to City, County, and State government agencies. Please tell us about your success in sales in these markets and, please, include sales figures and quotas.”
Management: “This position requires experience in leading a 20-person staff, hiring, performance evaluations, improvement plans, and decisions regarding termination of an employee. Tell us about your experience with these responsibilities.”
Ending the interview:
“We’ve covered a lot of ground in an hour. Is there anything else that you would like to tell us that we did not cover in our questions?”
“Do you have questions for us regarding the company or the position?”
“We will be in contact with you within seven days (or whatever timeline fits) regardless of our decision.”
Richard Serby, President