School leaders – 6 simple tricks to improve your interview effectiveness

Interviews are a fundamental part of the recruitment process and play a key role in shaping the candidate experience. Get them right, and you’ll inspire candidates to accept roles at your school – and they’ll share their positive experiences with others, too.

Here are some tricks on fine-tuning your interview process, plus a few tips on enhancing the overall recruitment process…

1. Nail your job ads

When done well, a job ad will differentiate your school from others and catch the eyes of the best of the bunch. Ads should communicate the requirements of the role, the benefits, plus your school’s culture in an engaging and succinct way. We tackled this topic in a recent blog post – take a look here.

2. Filter applicants before interviewing

Regardless of the role, there are bound to be applicants who won’t make it to interview. Manually managing the ‘filtering’ of candidates is a long and time-consuming process – but not if you’re signed up to eTeach’s School Recruiter software. School Recruiter enables you to manage recruitment with a low-cost and high-value suite of tools that work hand in hand with your in-house team.

3. Don’t scan applications – read them

Faced with a heap of applications, it can be incredibly tempting to skim over the finer details as you look out for general indicators of skills and experience. But this is a huge mistake; after all, every applicant is a potential candidate who could end up becoming a valuable member of your workforce. Delving deep into each application will allow you pick out candidates who are the right cultural fit for your school, and will also assist with the next step…

4. Personalise interviews

Failing to personalise a job interview is like going into a meeting without reading over the agenda beforehand. You owe it to candidates to personalise interviews; if you’ve read each application in depth, ask general questions as well as ones related to their specific skills, interests and experience. This will grant you deeper insight into each applicant, helping you to differentiate them from the following or previous interviewee. It also sends a positive message to candidates that you’ve taken the time to learn about them, which could influence their decision to accept a role at your school.

5. Look past experience

Experience is overrated – there, we said it! Even if you’re not with us on this one, you’ve got to agree that experience is just one of many factors that should influence a recruiting decision. The interview will allow you to identify behaviours indicative of quality candidates – for instance, do they seem adaptable? Do they show a willingness to learn? Are they approachable? Do they have a positive outlook? Just bear this in mind: a candidate with the least experience, but who possesses many great qualities, could end up being one of your best members of staff.

6. Always follow up

An unsuccessful job interview can knock a candidate’s confidence, so it’s really important to provide them with constructive feedback they can take on board for future applications. Plus, following up will allow you to build a talent pool of candidates, to whom you can encourage to re-apply when suitable vacancies arise in the future.

Providing great experiences to candidates, where interviews are personalised and focus on qualities other than teaching experience, is sure to boost the impact of your school’s overall recruitment strategy. To find out the different ways eTeach can support you, give one of our experts a call today on 0845 226 1906.

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