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job interview

Guide to the Interviewing Process

These guidelines have been prepared to help interviewers conduct fair and objective interviews. An interview should provide as much information as possible about an applicant's potential to perform the duties of a particular position. The most valuable interview is objective and permits the interviewer(s) to determine the knowledge, skills, and qualities of a prospective employee.

Interview Process Development

Form the Interview Team

If feasible, use a team approach. The team approach is preferable because it saves time and allows for comparison of the applicant by the team members. The size of the interview team may vary, but generally two to three members are recommended.

Familiarize the Interviewer(s) with the Position

The interviewer(s) must be familiar with the major duties and responsibilities, and the essential knowledge, skills, and behaviors of the position. Be sure that each interviewer reviews the position description carefully.

Establish Criteria for Selection

The selection criteria must be consistent with the complexity and level of the job. Focus on performance factors that can be demonstrated in the selection procedure. Understand the departmental and organizational goals as they relate to this position. Such criteria must be job-related and might include performance during the interview, relevant training, education and experience, affirmative action goals, etc.

Develop Job-Related Questions

It is best to avoid "nice to know" questions. Lawsuits may result from applicants who are rejected on the basis of irrelevant questions asked by interviewers.


It is not uncommon for an applicant to provide irrelevant or inappropriate information during the interview. Should this occur, disregard the information and do not write it down.

Develop Interviewing Strategies

There are many different interviewing strategies. Develop strategies that are appropriate for the position level and skill requirements.  For example, interviews for a position that involves client contact should focus on verbal skills, while an analytical position requires more testing of critical thinking.

Establish a System to Evaluate the Responses

It might be beneficial to set up a formula for rating or ranking the applicant's responses to the questions based on the selection criteria. Evaluating the responses in this manner will help make the selection process easier and more objective.

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