In a panel interview, candidates meet with a group of interviewers instead of just one or two people. Leading a panel interview is often harder than a regular interview but can be more effective in specific situations. Panel interviews can have two major benefits. One, candidates learn more about the company when they undergo a panel interview because they will hear from multiple points of views. Two, they allow the candidate to learn about multiple departments or branches of a particular company. Here are some tips on leading an effective panel interview.
Warn Candidates in Advance
Candidates are typically going to expect a one-on-one interview (or an interview with one or two people). If they show up and there’s a whole panel, they may be caught off guard. It is fair to warn them in advance that they will be meeting with multiple people. You want the candidate to be open and communicative, but they will have a hard time doing this if they are nervous and taken by surprise.
Keep the Panel Informal
Since panel interviews are an intimidating format to begin with, you want to keep it as informal as possible. You want to do what you can to make the situation less stressful for candidates. One way to do this is to have the panel in a circle, rather than directly across from the candidate. It helps to keep the panel to three participants. If you want more participants, breaking the panel into sessions will be less intimidating.
Most candidates aren’t used to doing panel interviews. It helps to explain the “why.” If it is just about experience for the employees, that is not a good enough reason. What is in it for the candidate? For example, if each manager has ten minutes to talk about their department, you offer the benefit of them only attending one interview instead of three. There could also be multiple vacancies that fit the candidate’s skill set so this gives them a chance to discuss the different positions in one sitting.
Introduce Each Person and Explain the Process
Introduce each participant in the room and what their role in the company is and why they are participating in the panel interview. This will help them feel more comfortable. Also, explain the types of questions each participant will be asking and why. How long will the interview last? All of this information will make them feel more welcome and confident.
Panel interviews can save both you and the candidate time. A slow interview process can cause you to lose out on top candidates, but you don’t want to scare candidates off either. You need to be careful in your approach to the interview. Lastly, you definitely want to avoid having multiple managers meeting with multiple candidates at once. It becomes all about the company at that point. You want the interview to be about the candidate.
Are you looking for top talent in insurance, accounting or banking?
Contact us to learn more about how we can streamline your hiring process and get you the talent you need to succeed. Our focus on developing strong relationships and long-term partnerships in our specialized practice areas is the advantage that keeps our clients in the top positions as industry leaders.
Are you a professional looking for a new opportunity?
Contact us to discuss your career options or browse our open positions. [vc_separator type=”transparent” thickness=”10″][vc_row css_animation=”” row_type=”row” use_row_as_full_screen_section=”no” type=”full_width” angled_section=”no” text_align=”left” background_image_as_pattern=”without_pattern”][vc_column width=”1/4″][button size=”medium” target=”_self” hover_type=”default” link=”https://sanfordrose.com/newmangroup/career-opportunities/” hover_color=”#a6a6a6″ background_color=”#990000″ text=”Browse Positions”][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/4″][button size=”medium” target=”_self” hover_type=”default” link=”https://sanfordrose.com/newmangroup/employers/” hover_color=”#a6a6a6″ background_color=”#990000″ text=”I’m Ready To Hire! “][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/4″][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/4″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row css_animation=”” row_type=”row” use_row_as_full_screen_section=”no” type=”full_width” angled_section=”no” text_align=”left” background_image_as_pattern=”without_pattern”][vc_column][vc_separator type=”transparent” thickness=”10″][/vc_column][/vc_row]