Tips for interviewing and sample questions

When interviewing multiple candidates for a position, it is important to use the same criteria for evaluating each candidate in order to avoid legal problems. The key is to be consistent and fair with all candidates. 

Use an interviewing guideline of core criteria and qualifications that is applicable to all candidates. After you have selected the questions that are appropriate to use, give some thought to the answer(s) that makes sense given your department, culture, and the duties and the experience required to be successful in the position. Choose questions that fit the position.

Most of these questions do not have a “right” or “wrong” answer.  The applicant’s reasoning abilities and the thought process that leads to the answer is often as important as the answer itself.

Scoring system

One method for evaluating interviews is the use of a scoring system. The total number of points possible for each question should be determined prior to the interviews and should be used consistently for each candidate.

Personal information

The candidate may share personal information with you during an interview. The key to keeping the interview legal is to not address items that are not job related. 

For example, an applicant may share that her spouse is a brain surgeon. A response as simple as, "Oh, does he plan to open a practice here?" can be viewed as an attempt to gain personal information. The answer to this question is not job related and has nothing to do with whether or not the individual will make a good, effective employee.