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Disruptive Interview Tactics to Improve Quality of Hire

Allie Kelly

As new technologies arise and become standardized, employees need to keep up. Indeed, the very nature of work changes with each new technological development. As a result, the interview tactics HR leaders use to identify top performers also need to change.

In fact, a recent Robert Half survey of chief financial officers found that 65 percent of CFOs find it at least somewhat challenging to identify skilled workers. The harder it is to find talent, the longer open positions will remain unfilled. To cope with this rising challenge, HR leaders are considering disruptive interview tactics.

Puzzle solving

Bringing logic puzzles to the interview process is nothing new. Computer programmers are often faced with coding challenges when they apply for a new position. Because many of today’s top programmers have never set foot inside of a classroom – the technology didn’t exist when they were in college – hiring managers cannot simply look at the candidate’s academic records to determine whether they are qualified. A test is a much more effective way to determine skill level.

But what about positions that require creative problem-solving skills? Written logic puzzles, games and simulations could provide the answer. According to a Knowledge Academy survey, 70 percent of companies said they would be open to assessing candidate’s in an escape room: a type of single-session, role-playing game in which participants are locked in a room filled with clues, with the objective of escaping within a set timeframe.

Other logic-based and strategy games could prove useful in an interview scenario. As virtual reality not only becomes more affordable, but also more commonplace, interviewers may be able to use the technology to run simulations of work-related challenges. Anyone who is familiar with Star Trek’s famous Kobayashi Maru training exercise will understand how simulations can help participants demonstrate their skills in a protected environment.

Focused questions

Interview questions that require long-form answers are another disruptive tactic stakeholders can use to find talent. An example prompt might look like this: “Describe in detail a difficult problem you’ve faced at work and how you worked to deal with it.”

This question gives the interviewee the ability to consider a relevant challenge from their past and describe the thought processes and skills used to bring the challenge to a solution. These questions could be posed in either verbal or written form.

Additionally, leveraging tools like knockout questions can easily narrow down your candidate pool. By selecting the criteria you know is critical to the role, resumes without these skills will automatically be disqualified from the process. This could save the hiring teams significant time and resources.

Involved stakeholders

It’s critical to involve multiple departments in the hiring process. Sure, HR knows all of the job descriptions, but have they actually performed the job? No one knows more about a job than someone who has had to sit down for eight hours a day, five days a week and do the job. At least one of the interviewers should always be someone with first-hand experience.

To summarize, hiring stakeholders should consider:

  • Adapting puzzle and logic games to the interview process.
  • Asking questions that require long-form answers.
  • Involving experienced workers in the interview process.

If you’re interested in learning more about how to jazz up your interview process, try JazzHR for free today!

Allie Kelly


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