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Interviewing is a skill, not a coffee klatch. Stop wasting your chances to acquire great talent.

Posted on: April 20th, 2017 | Category: Hiring Methodology, hiring process, How To Hire Good Employees, Interviews, Our Blog

Interviewing is a skillClickbait strikes again! We were recently shocked by a headline in The New York Times that read: “The Utter Uselessness of Job Interviews.”


This one we had to read. As it turns out, the main thrust of the article was that poorly conducted interviews are useless…and they are rampant, too. Now that’s something we can totally agree with.

A good interview is not an informal, free-flowing chat session where the interviewer (for the most part) wings it based on whatever is on their mind at the moment, and the interviewee is left to sweat bullets as they navigate a minefield of spontaneous questions. The appeal of such unstructured interview practices is obvious: they require less time and effort, and they meant to feel more cordial. They also rely less on solid interviewing skills. That’s a real problem.

From the article:

Employers like to use free-form, unstructured interviews in an attempt to “get to know” a job candidate. Such interviews are also increasingly popular with admissions officers at universities looking to move away from test scores and other standardized measures of student quality. But as in my friend’s case, interviewers typically form strong but unwarranted impressions about interviewees, often revealing more about themselves than the candidates.


The article also cites research that shows poorly conducted interviews can actually be harmful, and can prevent companies from learning valuable information about job applicants. And what about if an unskilled interviewer generates a bad vibe that turns off a desirable candidate from wanting to take the position they are applying for? Employers should never forget that the candidates that they are checking out during the interview process are checking them out as well.

Unstructured interviews conducted by unskilled interviewers have another major drawback: there’s no way to make meaningful comparisons between candidates. Inconsistencies in questioning, settings, methods and more result in not being able to compare apples to apples when it gets down to choosing the right person to fill the position.

Improve your interviewing process, improve your workforce

Great candidates can slip away if the person or people asking them questions about their experience, proficiencies and knowledge just don’t have what it takes to conduct meaningful interviews. “I know a lot of people who are not very skilled interviewers that are given that task by their organizations. These are incredibly intelligent and successful businesspeople who are great at their jobs, but quite frankly, they stink at interviewing,” says Tina Hamilton, PHR, myHR Partner president “The results of their efforts are not good, and can have a lasting negative impact on their business. And it’s because you’re basically asking a fish to ride a bicycle, instead of swim.”

It doesn’t have to be this way, though. One thing companies can do is invest in training their hiring managers in the best interviewing practices. For most of them, hiring isn’t something they do every day. Providing your team with knowledge about the process and about best practices can go a long way towards improving their overall interviewing skills.

Still, there’s more to successful interviewing than simply following a checklist. Sometimes, the best hiring ROI comes from using experienced professional interviewers to help your company get the most out of this important step in the hiring process. Outsourced professional interviewers can also make sure your company’s culture and expectations are clearly explained to candidates. The end result is that you learn enough about a potential employee to make the best hiring decisions for everyone involved.

“Experience has shown me that with a highly skilled interviewer, organizations can get much better results from their interviews with candidates,” says Hamilton. “Hiring is a very expensive endeavor, so why take unnecessary risks?”

Don’t blow another opportunity! Conduct better interviews to get the best talent.

The time to improve your company’s interviewing processes is now. You’d love to, you say, but you and your team have no time? Outsource the process with our hiring management services. Our fees are based only on the work we do, never on a per-hire basis, so your company’s best long-term interests are always our focus. myHR Partner also offers myHR DirectLink to help you support those great hires by implementing our award winning outsourced human resources services.

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myHR Partner’s periodic publication, MODERN EMPLOYER, is created for business executives, owners and HR professionals who want to maximize their human resource functions using progressive hiring and HR strategies. It’s informative, fun and practical. Oh, and it’s FREE too!

You’ll discover:

  • Tips on hiring, screening, and interviewing
  • Creative ideas to help retain your best employees
  • Ways to put the “human” back in Human Resources
  • How to perform effective reference checks
  • New HR regulations and how they affect you and your employees
  • How small changes in certain processes can have big results
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