Interview Feedback from the Candidates perspective

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Interviews are conducted to hire the best fit from the talent pool. The sole purpose of interviews is to ensure that the deserving candidate is hired.

People mostly focus on interview questions, but it’s time to reconsider everything and shift the focus from interview questions to the job description.

This important area lacks vision these days. Mostly, recruiting firms just copy the job description and paste it into their job portal without realizing that this serves as a deciding factor for job seekers whether to apply for the job or wait for another one.

Consider a scenario, where candidates receive an email from the HR of a reputed organization. While reading the mail, the candidates go through the attached job description and find out that this is the kind of job, they always dreamt about.

A hopeful candidate applies for the job and within a month receives an interview invite from HR confirming that there would be three face to face interviews. At the time of the interview, the candidate gives all the responses as expected and made it through the last round.

Since the last round was the face to face interview with the HR Head, the candidate is hopeful about the selection. However, when asked about the expectations from the new job role, the candidate figured out that the job responsibilities highlighted in job description does not match with the job responsibilities highlighted by the HR head.

The candidate lost interest in the interview and expressed the feeling of being deceived. The reply from HR head left the candidate in shock: 

“We don’t know much about your field and we wanted someone to do justice to this newly started position in our organization. We managed to find a decent job description from LinkedIn and to our surprise, your resume spoke for you and we made up our mind to hire you”.

After hearing this, candidate voiced a concern and left in dejection.

This trend is going on and we can see jobseekers expressing their feelings on various platforms including Glassdoor, but unfortunately, it is jobseekers who are blamed. Being the HR Head of a reputed organization, people ought to believe that it is negligence on jobseeker’s part.

To hire the best fit, we need to have a solid job description. Recruiting firms need to understand that it should reflect the vision of the organization rather than being a vague piece of information. It could help candidates understand about the organization before joining and the expectations that their Managers will have from them.

So, rather than copying the job description, employers should invest in highlighting the vision of an organization and the job responsibilities in the job description.

Consider another scenario, where candidate applies for a job, reading the job description which says: latest tools and future domain, ability to represent team outside India, collaborating with cross-functional teams, presiding as a speaker in the official conference.

For a candidate, this job seems to be the aspired job. However, during the interview, the candidate finds out that neither the HR nor the interviewer confirmed the things mentioned in the job description.

When the candidate voiced a concern, the management apologized for being unaware. We have read articles and posts on various platforms, where Human Resource Management has often questioned the laidback attitude of jobseekers, but they fail to see the broader picture.

Apart from the job description, it’s time to revisit the questions asked in Interview. Sometimes, the questions are irrelevant and have nothing to do with the job. The questions like “What are your marriage plans?” cannot judge loyalty or commitment factors. But most organizations hire or fire candidates on the basis of this question. This is another trend being observed while conducting interviews. The sufferers are always female candidates in this case. Gender discrimination is already prevalent in the corporate sector and by asking such questions and making it a set paramount to judge candidates is like starting another debate.

Besides, the most important trend being observed while conducting an interview is the negligence in providing feedback to a candidate. Often, recruiting firms ask candidates to wait for an e-mail, but the truth is, years pass by without hearing anything from them.

Consider a scenario, where a candidate appears for an interview after qualifying the written test. The candidate was confident about the questions asked by the interviewer and it was evident that this could lead to selection.

However, the candidate was asked to wait for the result and confirmation. Days passed by, but the candidate did not receive any mail. Still, the candidate was hopeful and just to keep the backup option; the candidate accepted the offer letter elsewhere. But, somewhere deep down the hopes were still intact on hearing the positive news.

Months passed, but the candidate did not receive any confirmation mail. Finally, the candidate decided to write an e-mail to the HR. The reply from HR startled the candidate:“We won’t be able to process your candidature at this moment. On further analysis, we found that your skills and experience does not match with this position.”

This is not the only case. We all face this kind of situation, sometimes in our career where we tend to believe that fault is not with management or interview practices, but the fault is in ourselves. We have seen this negligence on Management’s part to not provide the feedback to the candidate and later shift the blame on the candidate by writing such mail.

Still, when jobseekers voice out their concern they are left unheard. It’s about brand, fame, and reputation. In this mesh of fame and reputation, talent always hath a fall.

And people often quote saying “We don’t want careless employees in our organization”. This picture needs to be developed from better negatives. It’s time to decide “Are we at fault or them?”

This time we need better answers without any deception.

Sanjeev Himachali

Sanjeev Himachali is a Strategic HR Consultant, Talent Strategist, Management Consultant and a Performance Coach. He exhibits over a decade and a half years of progressive, leadership experience and core competencies in talent acquisition, management, and development, HR program management, compensation & benefits management, and staff engagements.

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Principal Consultant & Talent Strategist

As a Principal Consultant, Sanjeev is credited with pioneering best practice HR systems and processes for clients. As a Talent Strategist, Sanjeev partners with organizations hiring managers to find, select, and hire top talent which provides a foundation for organization's future growth.

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