Read these 10 How to Hire the Perfect Candidate Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Creative Staffing tips and hundreds of other topics.
The time after a job interview can offer an opportunity to reflect on the person you have spoken with. Once you have finished interviewing a candidate, take a few minutes to jot down any overall impressions you may have had during your time together. The time right after you talk is when your memories of the interview will be the most fresh. If you go back to work and launch right into a project, these thoughts will begin to fade.
List any additional questions that the interview may have raised, so that you can include them in a second interview if appropriate. Take a few moments to record anything you were particularly pleased with, or anything you really had a concern about. If the applicant isn't quite right for the particular position and you really think they are a good fit for the company, you may even want to see if there are any other job openings that would work well with their particular skills.
Freelance artist jobs or other, more independent positions may be a bit more flexible in terms of an exact match as they will probably work on a contract basis; possibly even from home. Every company is different as to what they are looking for when it comes to hiring freelancers, but after an interview you will probably have an impression as to whether the person seems right for the level of involvement you are looking for. A few quick key words can help you recall that information later on when it is time to make a decision.
Does your company utilize exit interviews? While at first it may seem that an exit interview has nothing to do with hiring the perfect candidate for a job at your organization; that actually isn't the case. This type of interview can help you learn about how employees see their role in the company. It can also help point out any strengths and weaknesses; giving you the opportunity to address them and improve the work environment. Even a freelance artist may be able to offer you valuable feedback.
If you have a human resources department, you may want to assign this duty to them. You'll need to decide if the interview will be formal or casual, and what type of paperwork will be involved. Some things that are typically included on an exit interview form include:
One crucial step that should always be performed when it comes to hiring a new employee is the reference check. As you are no doubt already aware, past work history often has a direct bearing on future behavior. Although there are some fairly strict guidelines in terms of what you can and can't ask; this step is vital to knowing if the person you interviewed is the best fit for the position.
You may want to let the candidate know that you are going to check their references. The reaction they give can speak volumes. When you contact a reference, verify the basic information that you have been given such as job titles, employment dates and job duties performed. Make sure these match. For example, if someone lists "art director" on their resume, but their employer refers to them as a copywriter, you may well have a problem on your hands. At the very least, you will want to dig a little deeper to get to the bottom of the issue before moving forward.
Be especially aware of the tone of a former employer or manager. While there are certain things that are prohibited from being said, you can still sense if a person is hesitant to say good things about a person. If they are less than enthusiastic, you may want to keep that in mind. Also, make sure you get in touch with all of the people on the reference list so that you have a representative sample to consider.
People often think of the hiring process with finality; you have an opening, you look for a candidate, and then you fill the opening. For many reasons, this may not be the best way to get talented people on your team. While traditional methods have their allure, recruiting can sometimes be a better way to go. So what does recruiting mean exactly? Basically, it means that one way or another, you are always on the lookout for sharp, new talent. While you may not be hiring these people immediately, you can still collect information to keep on file.
Recruiting is a smart concept that is often utilized by top companies who are always actively searching out the best and the brightest to join their ranks. This proactive approach can help you insure that your company stays on the cutting edge when it comes to hiring new employees. For example, if a graphic artist freelance job suddenly comes up; you'll already have a candidate waiting in the wings.
While recruiting isn't right for every company; you may want to take just a moment to decide if it might be something for yours to consider. If you don't have the resources to do this in-house, you may want to retain the services of a recruiting company to do it for you. The search for talent can be long, but recruiting can bring you one step closer.
In today's busy workplace environment, nearly everyone is pressed for time. If your head is spinning with projects and you want to make sure you find the right candidate for a particular job, consider hiring an agency to do it for you. Agencies already have access to a pool of talent, and they can often find a great match--giving you some room to breathe.
Agencies help by taking care of the details, so you won't have to use your precious time writing a freelance artist job description or want ad for applicants. The agency will cover most of the groundwork, and the best ones will make sure they know what you are looking for--specifically. Each organization operates a little differently, so be sure to talk with them about their screening and hiring process to make sure you fully understand their services.
Make sure that if you do hire an agency, that you know they will be working hard for you to find the right person for the job. How can you do that? Ask for references from satisfied clients, or talk with a representative from the agency about how their process works, and what the time-frame is that you can expect to wait. Make sure to let them know any specifics you need, and they will be well-equipped to handle the job hunt for you. Most of all, make sure you feel that you are being treated with the care and attention that you deserve, and that you are comfortable with the agency you select.
A good interview is more than a question and answer session; it is also an exchange of information. You learn about a potential employee or contractor--and they learn about your organization as well. The flow of information should really go both ways to make sure the match is a good one. For example, if you are interviewing freelance creative directors, not only will you want to see if someone is a good fit for your organization, but you'll also want to tell them about what it is like to work for your company. If both parties are satisfied with what they learn; the match is likely to be a great one.
The beginning of an interview is the perfect time to give a potential new-hire a brief overview of the work environment, company history and the job position. Spend a few minutes talking about these things to help candidates feel more comfortable, as well as answer any questions they may have going into the interview.
The end of the interview is another good time to answer questions and explain anything that you feel may need clarification. This type of information exchange is helpful to have the interviewee learn more about your organization, but it is also a way to help you learn more about them as well. The kind of questions that they ask can help you discover things that you may not have seen in the interview.
The format of a job interview can be a key factor to consider when looking at candidates for a particular position. Whether you are looking for a creative art director or a freelance production artist, there are many different ways to conduct an interview. Matching the process to your company style can be a good way to decide on which you prefer. It can also be a smart way to uncover the perfect candidate for the job.
Here are some examples of interview styles:
Developing good questions for a job interview is almost an art form. You'll have to know what to ask that will help you decide if someone is right for a position--without overstepping your boundaries and asking things that are inappropriate. You also need to be very careful that you don't ask questions that could be interpreted as discriminatory. If you aren't sure about a particular item, touch base with someone in your company. Another great resource to check is the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
A great way to get started writing questions for an interview is to use the job description to formulate them. For example, if you are looking to hire a freelance artist, write out a list of questions based upon the freelance artist description, and then narrow things down from there. You don't have to cover every point, but make sure that the main areas are touched on.
Try to ask open-ended questions that give people a chance to explain their thoughts. You are more likely to find the right match for the position that way, as simple yes or no answers don't allow for any extra information or insight into the person's response. Also, try to have your questions remain neutral in tone and subject so that you aren't "leading" the person down a particular path by the way something is phrased.
Having a clear job description is a key part of the hiring process, and pulling one together doesn't have to be a dull task. If you are the person who will be writing the final description, it may help to take a look at your own job description or others if they are available to you. Another tactic is to sit down with other personnel and brainstorm ideas on some of the following points:
The scope of the work will vary quite a bit depending on the position. Obviously an art director job description will be written very differently than one for a freelance production artist, but the overall goal is to clarify roles and expectations. Make sure to review the document once it has been written and look for any areas that need tweaking before you finalize it. You may also want to have it reviewed by the legal department if you have one, just to be on the safe side.
Hiring someone for your organization is no small task. In some ways, it is almost like dating; in order to get a good match, you first need to know what it is that you are looking for in a potential candidate. This can be accomplished by having a frank discussion with others in your organization about what type of experience and attitude are desirable for a new hire in your company.
Overall, you'll want to choose a qualified applicant, who can do the tasks required of them in the position. It helps to have a list of what those tasks are, so that you can match them up with the candidate's experience and see if they are complimentary. This information can then be used to draw up an appropriate job description that will help clarify the roles and responsibilities involved in the position.
You'll also want to find a person who will fit in well with your organization's mission and vision; especially if they will be in a position to lead others and influence company policy. Try to include interview questions that can help explore this fit as well. It doesn't matter if you are looking for an art director or a writer, the overall fit with the company can be important to a smooth working relationship.
Before the interview, review the job description and interview questions to keep the important points in mind so that you are prepared to look for them during your time with the interviewee. Knowing what you want from a candidate is a key step in finding the right person for your organization.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|