Danielle Asano
over 3 years ago by Connor Coombes

How to get the most from your candidate interviews

Adult Blur Boss 288477

Conducting interviews are a really important stage of the recruitment process. Not only are you trying to determine which candidate is most suited to your team, the candidate will also be wanting to decide which organisation is best for them. Remember we are in a candidate-short market. For every vacancy available, there are only 0.4 candidates. This means that candidates are spoilt for choice on the job market. It is down to you to sell yourself and stand out from the competition.

So, what can you ask to get a unique insight to the candidate and what they have to offer? Well, Cherry Professional, we spoke to one of our expert recruitment consultants for some pointers and tips of the insightful questions to ask.

To begin with…

Interviews can be very daunting for candidates so take some time to welcome the candidate, introduce yourself and put them at ease. The more relaxed they are, the more responsive they will be. Take some time to explain your role within the business and ask them about their self.

You can then start off by asking the candidate what they know about the business and the role. This a good question to ask straight away as you will be able to see how committed the candidate is and check their understanding of the role.

Next, it is wise to run through their CV, be aware of any gaps in their employment history and question their experience to get a detailed understanding.

Tip: Ask questions such as "Talk me through your position at XYZ". A question phrased this way will encourage a detailed answer.

What to ask…

 “What would be your main development areas?”

Why: This is a great way identify the candidate’s weaknesses and tailor any in house training straight to their needs.


“How do you like to be managed?”

Why: Every manager has a different style. You can pinpoint where they would fit within the business to get the best results.


“What are your motivators?”

Why: Motivators are a good way for you to understand what you need to sell back to the candidate to get them on board!


“What do you want to achieve outside of work and on a professional level in X years?"

Why: A lot of people don’t want to be stagnant within a company and will seek progression. Ask questions surrounding their progression and what they want to achieve outside of work but also on a professional level. This is a great opportunity for you as the employer to talk through why their goals are possible at the company. 

Tip: Use a time scale to keep the candidate focused in order to gain more specific information.

In closing…

“What do you think about the role and the business?”

Why: You will get an understanding of how the candidate feels about you as an employer. This is just as important as what you feel about the candidate.

Tip: If you like the candidate, chances are other business do as well so you need to sell your organisation just as much as they do.

“Do you have any questions?”

Why: This is a great conversation piece to finish off the interview and any loose ends. A good candidate will be wanting to ask lots of questions which again gives you the opportunity to speak about how great your business is.

No two interviews are the same but having questions prepared in advance will help you stay on track to obtain the information you need.

Tip: Bare in mind that candidates will have lots of interviews and they need to make the difficult choice of where they could be spending the foreseeable future.