New to HR? Conducting Your First Interview

new to hr? conducting your first interview

There are a variety of styles employers use when conducting interviews and no two companies are exactly the same. Throughout your career, I’m sure there have been interviews that you didn’t like, or ones where you weren’t fond of the technique being used, or thought the information requested or given had nothing to do with the job itself.

New to HR? Conducting Your First Interview


Conducting your first interview will bring a mix of emotions. That is why it is best to practice. Will you be conducting a one on one interview, group interview, phone or skype interview? Knowing this information can help you discover the best questions. Some companies have set interview questions for every candidate and some companies use a free flow style.

Well now the tables have turned and you’re now the person you weren’t too fond of before. Conducting an interview is no easy task, especially the first few that you’re doing on your own. Of course, you know the questions you can and can’t ask, but how do you know which would be perfect for your potential new employee? Here are a few tips to conducting your first interview as an HRNewbie.

Practice, Practice, Practice

My very first interview was given to me 5 minutes before the person walked through the door because the other assistant manager had to leave for an emergency. I had never even been present in an interview besides my own! It is important that you take the time to practice, from your posture to the questions you may ask. Know this interview, from your side, like the back of your hand.

Make Notes

You won’t remember everything said during the interview, and while you shouldn’t write down word for word their response, it’s important to jot down their answers to your key questions.

Make it a Conversation

Candidates are normally nervous for interviews, it doesn’t matter if this is their 1st or 50th, they are still going into unfamiliar territory and trying to land a job. Having a conversation, instead of asking them closed-ended questions, allows you to get to know them a little on a more personal level. Always remember, you’re not doing this to skate around questions you’re not legally able to answer. Asking them about a hobby that allows them to relax from the stress of work can let you know the type of environment this individual thrives in.

Ask the Right Questions

It’s important that you ask the questions that will benefit you. Ask opened ended questions that allow them to say more than yes or no. In the interview, it’s important to try and find out if this person will mix well with your team. We can’t just focus on what they’ve achieved for their employers in the past.

Be Energetic

Present the emotions you want from the candidate. They may not be as excited about the interview as you are because they don’t know the greatness of your company, but it’s your opportunity to show them a little bit about your culture and how you’ll work.

Ask them for questions

Recruiters and schools are now teaching that an applicant should ask at least one question in an interview, give them the opportunity to ask a question they find of importance.

Finally, find out which style fits your company or try to create your own. The interview process can be fun! The times are changing and the rules of how to complete certain task are evolving, so make sure your interview techniques and process are doing the same. Always remember, you were once in their seat and could be back in it again. How would you want your interview done?

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Jazmine Wilkes

Proud millennial human resource leader focused on sharing HR insights, learnings and resources. Sharer of memes. Author of HRJazzy. Connect with her on LinkedIn.


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