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Uplevel Your Interviews With Better Questions

This week, Supernormal launched the Job Interview Q&A Template, a template that formats your Supernormal meeting notes by the questions asked in an interview and the candidate’s responses. Our team has been using the template for all our internal interviews and we’ve been blown away by how much it streamlines evaluating candidates and collaborating on hiring decisions following the interview, but it got us thinking about the quality of interview questions we asked. So we decided to delve more into the art of creating great interview questions. Here are the best practices we came up with. 

Start with the Job Requirements

To ensure you're asking the right questions, begin by clearly defining the job requirements. Identify the key skills, qualifications, and attributes necessary for success in the role. This will serve as a foundation for formulating questions that specifically target these areas.

Example:

For a project manager role:

  • "Can you describe a project you managed from initiation to completion? What challenges did you face, and how did you overcome them?"

Evaluate Skills and Technical Competence

For technical roles especially, it's essential to evaluate a candidate's skills and technical competence. Tailor questions to the specific technical requirements of the position, focusing on practical application and problem-solving.

Example:

  • "Walk me through your approach to troubleshooting a complex software bug. What tools or methodologies do you employ?"

Include Behavior-Based Questions

Behavior-based questions provide insight into how a candidate has performed in past situations, offering clues about their future performance. By focusing on specific experiences, you can assess a candidate's abilities, decision-making skills, and problem-solving approach.

Example:

  • "Tell me about a time when you had to handle a difficult team member. How did you address the situation, and what was the outcome?"

Ask Hypothetical and Situational Questions

Hypothetical and situational questions gauge a candidate's ability to think on their feet and apply their knowledge to real-world scenarios. These questions can assess their problem-solving skills, creativity, and analytical thinking.

Example:

  • "Imagine you're leading a team working on a complex project, and you receive a critical change request from a client. How would you prioritize the request and communicate it to your team?"

Cover Cultural Fit and Values

Assessing cultural fit is crucial to ensure a candidate aligns with your organization's values, vision, and work environment. Ask questions that explore a candidate's values, motivations, and how they approach teamwork and collaboration.

Example:

  • "What type of work environment brings out the best in you? Can you provide an example of a time when you collaborated effectively with a diverse team?"

Crafting great interview questions is an essential part of the hiring process, as it allows employers to gain deeper insights into candidates' abilities, experiences, and cultural fit. By aligning questions with job requirements, using behavior-based and situational questions, assessing cultural fit, and evaluating technical competence, you can create an effective interview that helps identify top talent. Remember, the key is to be thoughtful, specific, and purposeful with your questions, enabling you to make informed hiring decisions. 

Remember, the ultimate goal of an interview is to discover the best candidate for the position who not only possesses the necessary skills but also fits well within the company. By carefully designing your interview questions, you can enhance your ability to identify and attract exceptional talent. 

Uplevel your interviews today with better questions, and make it easier to compare candidates and collaborate on hiring decisions following interviews with our new Job Interview Q&A Template

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