INTERVIEW

MEANING
•Interview refers to a conversation with a purpose “ Selection of Employment interview”.
•It is conducted to evaluate the applicant’s suitability & acceptability.
•The interviewer seeks to satisfy himself with reference to the applicant  about broad issues,

              (I).  Will the applicant do the job?

              (II). How does the applicant compares with the other
                applicants who are being considered for the job?

•Interview is a face to face encounter with a purpose. It employs conversation.
•In an interview there is given and take between the interviewer and interviewee.
•Much of the interaction between these two is carried on by gestures, postures, facial expressions and other communicative behavior.
•The interview affords an opportunity to understand a clear picture of the personality of the candidate.
 
OBJECTIVES OF INTERVIEW/PURPOSE/ESSENTIALS
Various purposes of employment interview may be discussed as follows:
 
1.To determine suitability:

        Interview has been widely used to find out suitability of the candidate  because it offers an opportunity to the interviewer to learn and judge the applicant’s qualification, training, work history etc.

 2.To verify and collect information:

        Interview is used to verify the information obtained in application form and test results and also gathers that information which is not in application form of candidate.

3.To provide job description:
 
The purpose of the interview is to give detail description about the job i.e. full detail of terms and condition of employment, objectives and policies of the company. It also provide opportunity to the applicant to learn about the job and employer.
 
4.To reinforce employment decisions:
 
The interview is designed with a purpose to determine and reinforce the reliability(consistency) and validity (accuracy) of the employment decision based on assessments derived from the interview.
 
5.To discover psychological factors:
 
Is purpose is to discover various psychological factors that influence interviewer’s judgments.
To establish rapport or mutual understanding. The comprehensive conversation is designed to establish a positive relationship between the employer and the employee  and to motivate the prospective  employees to accept the offer of appointment with the enterprise and also to promote company’s goodwill.
 
SIGNIFICANCE/IMPORTANCE (MERITS) OF INTERVIEW
 

Interview is the oldest and most commonly used device in selecting personnel at all

Levels. Merits are as follows;

1.To fill in information gaps:
 
The interview offers a chance for the manager to fill in gaps in the information provided by application forms and tests.
 
2.To assess psychological or intangible factors:
 
Interview lead new types of information i.e. interviews are used to assess intangible factors such as motivation and enthusiasm that can’t be shown on application form.
 
3.Help in selecting a suitable candidate:
 
Interview provides an opportunity to the manager to judge suitability of candidate. It is the most satisfactory way of judging qualities of candidates i.e. way of talking, thinking, sensitivity, qualities of leadership and so on. Qualities possessed by him make him suitable for the job in the concern.
 
4.Two-way exchange of information :
 
Interview allows a two-way exchange of information- interviewers learn about the applicant , and applicant learn about the employer, the job environment and the company policies.
 
5.Flexibility:
 
Selection interviews are the most widely used selection technique. Most of the companies have more confidence in interviews than in any other source of selection information. Their popularity stems from their flexibility. They can be adapted to unskilled, skilled, managerial and professional employees.
 
PROCESS OF INTERVIEW/ ACTIVITIES IN AN INTERVIEWING SITUATION
 

The interview should be supplemented by other techniques of selection such as

psychological tests, trade tests etc. This process has sequential steps that illustrate

how the actual interview process occurs or should occur :

1. Preparation of interview:
 
Advance planning is necessary for successful interview, because that enables the interviewer to cover all important aspects and essential points in order to select candidate for the job. The upcoming guidelines or principles must be observed to make perfect arrangements  for a good interview.
 
2.Arranging a relaxed physical setting :
 
After planning and preparation, we should do proper arrangements which means place of interview should be private, neat and clean, well ventilated as well as comfortable. It should be free from any other disturbance or noise. Moreover proper seating arrangements should be made by comfortable furniture.
 
3.Conducting the interview :
 
The interview should start at the fixed time that candidates haven’t to wait unnecessarily. This phase is of critical importance in an interview.
 
4.Creation of rapport:
 
The heart of interview process is the rapport. Its is a relationship of mutual trust and comfort far from anxiety. No interview is without stress. There is anxiety at both sides. By this the candidate will talk freely. In view of mutual anxiety, every effort should be made to allay (calm) the normal fear of both parties. Rapport is aided by beginning the interview on time and starting with  non-threatening questions, greeting the candidate with a warm smile and reducing his nervousness.
 
5.Information Exchange:
 
The interview process is a conversation that exchanges information and  the interviewer ask questions so as to get complete information. Interviewee can also ask questions regarding the company, job responsibilities and career potential.
 
6.Closing the interview:
 
The interviewer must draw the session to a close. Non-verbal communication is useful in this regard. Verbal indication may be given thus; “Okay, thank you”. The interviewer may tell the candidate about the manner of intimating him about the  result of the interview.
 
7.Recording observations and impressions:
 
The interviewer should write down in brief his observations & impressions gathered during the interview and noted down on the Interview Assessment  Form.
 
8.Evaluation:
 
After the interview end, the interviewer evaluates the performance of the candidate on the basis of information, impressions and observation recorded. The interviewer also take into consideration the weight age given to the information collected through all the selection steps. The use of the checklist can improve reliability of the interview as a selection technique. This kind of checklist helps interviewer to obtain large information even from a short interview.
 
METHODS/TECHNIQUES/TYPES OF INTERVIEW
 

The common methods or techniques or types or formats of interview may be

Discussed as follows:

1.Structured or Patterned Interview:
 
Structured or directive or guided interviews rely on a predetermined set of questions. The questions are developed before the interview begins and ask from every important question from the applicant. It helps to guarantee  that all the applicants have been treated in the same way. Structured questions improve the reliability of the interview process. If the interview is too rigidly structured , the interviewer is not allowed the chances of follow up questions with regard to interesting responses given by the candidate. 
 
2.Unstructured or non-directive interview :
 
Unstructured or un-patterned or  non-directive interview allows the interviewer to develop questions as interview proceeds. The interviewer tries to simulate a friendly conversation. The interviewer’s questions are held to a minimum, and they are open-ended. Rather than asking about specific details of the candidate’s last job, the interviewer may say: “Tell me about your work in this field.” Questions are made up during the interview.
 
3.Mixed Interview:
 
Interviewers typically use a blend of structured or non-structured questions. The structures questions provide a base of information that allows comparisons between candidates. But the unstructured questions make the interview more conversational and permit greater insights into the unique differences between the applicants. In a mixed interview, the interviewers encourage the applicant to expand on his ideas but standard topics are duly covered. The mixed interview is a realistic approach that yields comparable answers as well as in depth insights.
 
4.Behavioral or Situation problem interview:
 
Behavioral interview focuses on a problem or a hypothetical situation  that applicant is expected to solve. In this interview, the candidate is given a specific problem to solve or a project to complete. Often these are hypothetical situation, and the applicant is asked what should be done. Both his answer and approach are evaluated. This interview technique has a very narrow scope. It primarily reveals the applicant’s ability to solve the types of problems presented- useful to understand applicant’s reasoning power and analytically abilities under modest stress.
 
5.Stress Interview:
 
Stress interviews attempt to learn how the applicant will respond to pressure and stressful situations. This technique is used when the job evolves much stress. The interview itself consist of a series of harsh questions which are asked in rapid fire succession and in unfriendly manner. This interview test the emotional balance ability if the candidate. Attempts are made to exert pressure on the candidate by exposing him to rapid firing of questions. 
 
6.Group interviews:
 
In a group interview, a number of candidates are interviewed at once. Generally they are allowed to discuss job related matters among themselves while one or more observers rate their performance. A topic for discussion is given to the group. The interviewers observe the interaction potentiality, argumentation power, reactions, quality of ideas and logic, interactive ability, etc. of the candidates and rate them on these bases. Such interview is based on assumption that behavior displayed in a group situation is related to potential success on the job.
 
7.Panel or broad interview:
 
Such interview is conducted by a panel of two or more representatives of the firm. One candidate meets with the panel or broad. One of the panelists may act as a chairperson, but each of the panelists takes part in the questioning and discussions. Questions are asked by then in turn or at random.  This format allows the interviewers to co ordinate their efforts and follow up on questions.
 
8.One-on one interview:
 
This is a format in which candidate will pass through a series of interviews, first with member of HR department, then with manager for job opening and finally with manager’s superior.
 
9.Videotape interviewing:
 
Through the use of videotape interviewing, in which one –on one interviews are videotaped, managers are able to playback interviews to refresh memories or to look for new data. Storing the interview on videotape has the additional advantages of making it possible for others to see the interview and of altering the sequence of interviews. Disadvantages includes the possibility of interviewee’s resistance to being taped.
 
LIMITATION OR DEMERITS OF   INTERVIEW/COMMON PROBLEMS ENCOUNTERED (INTERVIEWER ERRORS)
 

Research findings point out that the interview offers the greatest value as a

selection  device in determining an applicant’s intelligence, level of motivation and

interpersonal skills. In spite of the importance of the interview as a selection

technique, it has several problems or limitations, which may be briefly discussed as

follows:

1.Personnel Bias:

The effectiveness i.e. validity and reliability, of interview is lessened by personal

bias of the interview. He likes and dislikes about dress, hair style, fluency of

speech, gestures, phraseology etc may effect his judgments. Owing to personal

bias, applicants are accepted or rejected for reasons that may bear no relationship

to their potential performance, harming  the validity of the interview.

2.Halo effect:

Halo effect means that the interviewer tends to evaluate the total worth of an

applicant’s on the basis of a single quality. If an applicant looks impressive in one

particular area, the interviewer may concentrate on that area to the exclusion of

other matters.

3.     Horn effect:

It is the opposite tendency to the halo effect. Under this tendency, the interviewer

turns one negative characteristic into a conclusion that the candidate is weak on all

 fronts.

4.Contrast effect:

Contrast effect is a tendency among the interviewers to evaluate a current

candidate’s interview performance in relation to those who immediately preceded

him. If a first candidate received a very positive evaluation and the second is

average, then the interviewers tend to evaluate candidate’s performance as

contrasted to that of the first. Qualified candidate must be underrated just because

the previous candidate is much impressive.

5.Lack of integration of available information:

Information from interviews in not integrated in a systematic manner. If

interviewers share information that may go in haphazard manner, they do not

identify job-related information. This casual approach may save time and

confrontation in short run. In long run everyone in organization will pay for

the poor selection decision. 

6.Leniency:

Leniency is adopted by the interviewers when they lack confidence and interest in

rating or they don’t have proper knowledge of interview. Toughness is the

opposite feature of leniency. Toughness consistently gives low scores and may

arise due to exaggerated expectations, lack of contact with people and rigid

personality. 

7.Projection:

Sometimes the interviewer projects himself as a standard. In such a case, he

expects his own type and size of knowledge, skills, and values in a candidate

whosoever appears in the interview. Therefore he is likely to select candidates

who resemble him in terms of appearance, manners, background etc.

8.Other problems:

Some other problems i.e. problem of signs or signals by the interviewer or some

interviewers may place more weight on other attributes or they may combine

attributes differently while making their overall decisions.

CHARACTERISTICS OF AN EFFECTIVE INTERVIEW

The interview is a worthwhile technique so the following guidelines may be

suggested for improving the effectiveness i.e. reliability and validity of

interviews in spite of the fact that the needs of different organizations will

vary according to their requirements:

1.Plan the interview:

Never start the interview unprepared. The interview should be conducted along

specific set of guidelines. The interviewer begins by studying all the materials

already available on the candidate. Planning every session in advance, the

interviewer should know which topics are critical for each individual applicant

and he covers the ground.

2.Shaping interviewer behavior:

Research indicates that when interviewers’ evaluation of candidates are in

the form of specific predictions of job behavior. Employers are therefore likely

to achieve nonbiased selection decisions if they concentrate on shaping

interviewer behavior. One way to shape interviewer behavior is to establish a

specific system for conducting the employment interviewer. One way to

shape interviewer behavior is to establish a specific system for conducting

the employment interview.

3.Relaxed physical setting:

The interviewer should follow a fixed set procedure. Reliability is increased

when the interview is designed along a constant pattern.

4.Structure the interview:

The interviewer should follow a set of questions which should be present to

every applicant. Structure and consistency have proved to be of greater value

for selection purposes than non-structure and flexibility. 

5.Train interviewers:

Interviewers should be given proper training. Structured interviews are more

likely to be achieved when interviewers been trained to follow similar patterns

in there questioning and to evaluate responses using a common standard. This

training would include awareness of the limitations or common problems

identified interview technique.

6.Listen closely:                                                                                                                                                       

Whether the format is structured or unstructured, the interviewer should listen

closely to everything the applicant has to say. Snap judgments and categorization

should be avoided. Goal is to understand applicant’s outlook and encourage asking

questions then he feels satisfied that his needs is being considered.

7.Focus on both technical and intangible questions :

Throughout the discussion, the interviewer should focus on both the technical

qualifications necessary for the job and intangible qualifications such as

motivation, energy, initiative, and enthusiasm.

8.Make notes:

The interviewer should take notes on the candidate’s answers during the

interview but he should do so discreetly so as not to hinder the discussions.

This will lead to increased accuracy in evaluation.

 

9.Control over direction and time:

The interviewer should maintain control over direction and time taken for the

 interview. 

10.To do before the session ends:

Before the interview session ends, the interviewer should make certain that the

applicant understand the exact nature of the job. It is important for both the firm

and the candidate that any misconceptions be dispelled, if the interviewers

persuades the candidate to join the firm by emphasizing its attractiveness, such

persuasion should not encourage unreasonable expectations in the mind of the

candidate. 

11.Avoid very short interviews:

Very short interview is more likely for the interviewer to arrive at a premature

decision. Since there is a tendency to reach a decision early in the interview, the

longer the time allocated for the interview, the less pressure the interviewer will feel

to make such premature decisions.

12.Avoid certain things :

The interviewer should not plunge too quickly into demanding questions. He should

not ask leading questions. He should not jump to conclusions on inadequate

evidence. He should not pay too much attention to isolate strength and weaknesses.

INTERVIEWER’S PREPARATION FOR THE INTERVIEW

Through effective preparation, the interviewer can set the stage for whatever

kind of interviewing situation. It involves these elements.

1.Purpose:

What is the purpose of the interview? What are the expected outcomes what

style is more appropriate, and what atmosphere is best?

2.Physical Arrangements:

Is the physical set up consistent with the purpose? Is privacy adequate? What

distraction should be eliminated?

3.Self-understanding:

Does the interviewer have an awareness of his/her own strength and

weaknesses, prejudices biases and other possible barriers to effective

communication?

4.Understanding the other :

What is known or should be known about the interviewee? What his/her

values, aspirations, motives and background.

5.Knowledge about the job:

He should know the company’s organizational structure, requirements and work

environment of the job about which he is interviewing the applicant. He should

prepare a job analysis for the position so he knows what to look for in an applicant.

6.Nature of information needed:

He should decide what information he needs from each applicant and areas he must

cover in the interview, so that he can determine qualifications a successful

candidate should have regarding applicant values, aspiration, incentives and

background.

•Avoid the impulse to cut the applicant off or the subject abruptly.
•Ask one question at a time.
•Make your question what you need.
• Appear interested in the candidate and give him or her full attention.
•Avoid expressing approval or disapproval of the candidate.
•Use language appropriate to the candidate. Empathies in your candidate.
•Ask no personal questions until after rapport has been established.
•Talk as little as possible. Let the applicant do most of the talking.
•Control the direction of the interview.
•Get a complete work history
•Takes notes of important point.
•Here and see the vocal and physical mannerisms of the applicant as well as listen carefully to all statements.
•Give the candidate an opportunity to ask questions. Answer honestly courteously.
•Sell the job if this is deemed desirable.
•Give the applicant a good impression of the organization before leaving.
•Allow the candidate ample opportunity to do himself or herself full justice.
 
 DO NOT/PITFALLS TO BE AVOIDED BY THE INTERVIEWER

Pitfalls to avoid relate mainly to the following biases, prejudices and weaknesses

within the interviewer: 

1.Halo effect-tendency of the interviewer to form an overall opinion about applicant on the basis of a single aspect of his or her makeup.
2.Stereotype error trap-tendency to categorize the applicant on basis of a few surface clauses.
3.Ideal image error-interviewer’s mental picture of the ideal person may necessary
conclude with the person who can actually be most effective on the job.
4.Personal—of the interviewer poor handshake, biting of fingernails, gum chewing, loud clothes, and poor eye control.
5.Pseudoscience and myth- judging the applicant’s character, mental ability attitudes by means of handwriting, outward features, date of birth, number of letters in the name, line or marks on the palm of the hand, shape and bulges of the skull.
6.Stereotyped mechanical interviewing – same questions in same order,adoption to the individual, no stimulating exchange of ideas, no interplay of attitudes. In turn, the interviewer receives stereotyped answers that don’t appraisal qualifications.
7.Illusion that previous experience. In itself guarantees ability to do the job well. Being swayed because the applicant needs a job – even the necessary qualifications are lacking.
8.Talking too much by interviewer not listening. Poor preparing for interview.
9.Asking inappropriate questions.
10.Being discourteous and rude towards the applicant.
11.Jumping to conclusion.
12.Leaving unexplored gaps.
13.Asking another question when the applicant merely hesitates a moment.
14.Allowing applicant to guide the interview. Depending on memory to conduct

interview ant to evaluate the applicant’s qualifications.

15.Appearing to be critical and cold towards the applicant.
16.Not observing not verbal clues (gestures, voice changes, hesitation)
17.Poor questions:
(a)Leading questions that invite a given response and the wording of which suggest the answers wanted.

(b) Loaded question- use of language that reveals one’s own biases and prejudices; in turn, the applicant will slant answer accordingly.

(c) Dead- and question that elicit only “yes” or “no” answer.

GUIDELINES FOR INTERVIEWEE

From the time the interviewer first sees you until you leave, he or she will be observing you carefully and listening to everything you say and to make the best information, you need to.

1.Prepare for the interview:
Pre-interview planning involve the following

-Study the company:

Nothing can hurt the candidate more can knowing the little about the organization. No knowledge probably indicates no sincerity and seriousness.

-Study yourself:

The next thing is to assist your own abilities. In his connection job requirements and personal qualification need to be matched.

2.Make an appropriate appearance:

The job applicant can’t be prepared for everything but must be adequately groomed so as not to call negative attention to something that may or may not be job related.

In terms of appearance one should,

(a).   Be as clean and well groomed as possible.

(b).   Where appropriate footwear.

(c).    Select appropriate clothes for the interview.

3.Plan your time:

One of the worst things you can do is to be late for an interview. Planning time properly allows you to unwind mentally review the things you plan to accomplish.

4.Show interest :

You can do so by the way you sit a look alert,by eye contact,by questions you ask. 5.Be courteous: Don’t chew gum and don’t smoke unless the interviewer invites you to do so.

6.Be sincere and honest at all times:

If you exaggerate or fabricate details- and if you are caught, interviewer will be less likely to consider you as a favorable candidate for the job.

7.Be yourself:

Don’t try to put on airs. By being yourself, you‘ll be on familiar ground soon more comfortable and be more at ease.

8.Be a good listener:

By doing so, you will be ready to reply a question the interviewer asks, seem interested and also received, and valuable clues from the interviewer’s statements.

9.When desirable explain how could you help the company in this job and why you like doing this kind of work. If useful, pull out of your briefcase some examples of your past work. 
 
10.Be prepared to ask sincere questions about the company because doing so shows interest.
 
11.Never make a slighting reference about a former professor or employer. If you can’t say anything good about a person don’t say anything bad.
 
12.Throughout the interview, smile at appropriate times but don’t maintain an artificial, plastered smile at any time.
 
13.Be alert for sign for the interviewer that the interview is about to end. And when you depart, be sure to thank the interviewer for seeing you.

14.  Tactfully ask some kind of commitment as to when the interviewer will let you know his/her decisions.

QUESTIONING SKILL FOR INTERVIEW

Employers hire people, not qualifications and the purpose  of  the interviewers is to

evaluate  candidate from the company’s point of  view. As the candidate has been

invited based on proper qualifications the interviewer will evaluate the person and

how good he or she fits with the evaluate the person and how good he or she fits

with the company.

TYPES OF QUESTIONS

Interview questions can be closed, open-ended, probing or a combination of  both

1.Closed Questions:

Such questions do not require detailed answer and only factual data are needed in a

Conversational format.

2.Open-ended questions:

Such questions illustrate the strength to the candidate who should tell the

interviewer about his proven quality.

3.Probing questions:

Such questions should be answered with more details about the topic being

discussed and gives an in-depth idea about the candidate.

CLASSIFICATION OF INTERVIEW QUESTIONS:

There are innumerable numbers of questions that can be put by the

interviewer. But all these questions can be summaries into different

categories which are as follows.

 Question related to education.

Such questions a usually asked to fresher which are evaluative as to why the

candidate preferred a particular course to other courses. Here is some

education questions often asked.

(a).   Why did you take a particular course?

(b).    Given the options what other courses would you prefer and why?

(c).     Which part of marketing/finance/human resources you liked the most?

(d).     What motivated you to do a post graduation?

(e).      Tell me about your most liked and disliked subjects.

Most questions about education should be answered with the relevant facts, but at

the same time the candidate should illustrate his strengths that will be in context

with the job. Questions asked about best and worst courses, jobs or experience are

just to test the strengths and weaknesses of the candidate.

Questions relate to experience.

Such questions are usually aimed at the experience holders and are asked to study

the qualities of the candidate regarding his supervisory skills. These questions can

also elicit answers that can gauge the understanding of the job of the candidate.

The candidate should adapt his actual work experience to the job for which of

summer projects or even about a volunteer job that can highlight his managerial,

financial or even marketing skills that can be relevant to the job experience is not

 enough, the candidate should be hold enough to ask as to what challenged the job

others and use his experience to elaborate how he is capable enough to candle the

problems.

Listed below are some of the experience questions.

(a).    Tell me about your previous job.

(b).    What was your most disappointing work experience?

(c).     How do you know that you have done a good job?

(d).     Describe a situation where you handled a problem with it.

(e).      Tell me about your most challenging and lest challenging job.

(f).       What was the most important thing you learned on your last job?

(g).       What type of  people to you like to work with?

(h).        Highlight the major work achievements of your previous company.

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