One of the single most important steps in the hiring process is providing all candidates with post-interview feedback even if you’ve decided against hiring them right now. Why? Preparing and sharing post-interview feedback reinforces your positive reputation as an employer and strengthens long-term relationships with job seekers. It also creates an opportunity for candidates to share their perspectives on your interview process.
If a candidate isn’t the best fit for one position, you might want them to consider applying for new openings in the future. However, without the right feedback mechanisms in place, sharing feedback can easily slip through the cracks, potentially leaving you–and candidates–in the dark. That’s why we’ve prepared a short list of post-interview feedback best practices that can easily be integrated into your current hiring process!
1) Prepare a Standardized Interview Feedback Template
Before conducting interviews, prepare a standardized interview feedback template to organize the primary criteria you’d like to evaluate during the interview. Include ample space to take notes during the conversation. Consider creating different columns or boxes within the note sheet where you can quickly categorize your thoughts.
For example, you might include a “glow” column and a “grow” column beneath each question. Using this layout, you can quickly jot down the aspects of the candidate’s responses that resonate with the role and compare them to any elements that do not. The easier it is for you to follow and fill out your template, the more streamlined your post-interview feedback process will be. This setup will make it easier to provide the candidate with feedback and to choose the right candidate for the role!
2) Set Aside Time To Reflect
Intentionally block-off time on your calendar in between interviews to reflect on how each one went. Running from one interview to the next can easily result in details getting mixed together and a blur of candidates later on. Consider scheduling just ten minutes as a buffer after an interview to review notes thoroughly and record constructive feedback while the conversation is still top of mind.
It may also be helpful to schedule a second chunk of time to revisit your notes after a few hours have passed. This way, you can process the conversation independently and sort through the logical implications after fully digesting the candidate’s responses.
3) Compare Your Notes to the Job Description
Your interview review process should include revisiting the job description. What are the “must-haves” that you can’t compromise on? What candidate qualities need to take priority over the rest? Review these details alongside your interview notes to uncover any potential discrepancies, misunderstandings, or skillset overlaps. This gives you specific and helpful feedback to share with your hiring team, making it easier to decide what should be communicated to the candidate.
4) Finalize Your Post-Interview Feedback Document
Revisit all notes before communicating any post-interview feedback to the candidate. Consider, including a section in your feedback document dedicated solely to candidate feedback. For instance, you might incorporate the following:
- Strengths (e.g., hard skills, soft skills, culture fit, previous experience, etc.)
- Candidate Opportunities for Improvement (e.g., skills vs. requirements)
- Internal Opportunities for Improvement (e.g., feedback from the candidate)
- Next steps (if any)
Each of these criteria can easily be shared via email, whether you decide to hire the candidate or not. However, implementing a structured and consistent process is the key to building long-term relationships with candidates. It’s also one of the best ways to identify patterns of inconsistency or determine if different types of candidates need to be attracted. For additional insights be sure to read The Key To Writing a Job Post That Captivates Candidates.
5) Hire Without the Hassle!
Your time is priceless and the stakes are high when it comes to finding the right fit. Our experienced recruiting professionals facilitate the entire hiring process from sourcing and screening to scheduling and interviewing. We also act as a liaison between you and the candidate to collect objective post-interview feedback on both sides. Visit our website to learn more about our recruitment process or contact us to discuss your unique hiring requirements!