March 22, 2016 – Colleen Niese - Insights

On Your Mark, Get Set, Interview!

dilbert-cultureSo! HR has screened multiple applicants and now it’s time for you to interview the finalists and evaluate who you will bring on board. As more and more parking organizations recognize that today’s hiring process is truly centered around acquiring talent, as opposed to the yesteryears view of just getting a position filled, they have altered the staffing strategies to follow suit. Does your process as the hiring manager reflect this important shift?
They Can Wait. The Marlyn Group has worked with a few folks over the years who still believe it’s a good practice to make candidates wait, whether it is in the receptionist area or days between communications, to “test” how strongly the candidate really wants the job. These are the same people who are surprised when that candidate accepts another offer. Like so much in the workplace, hiring talent is largely dependent on speed. If you have a finalist who is determined to be a strong fit – don’t delay with the offer; you’re likely not the only potential employer who finds that same individual attractive.

What’s Your Brand? A number of companies spend a lot of time, money and resources on promoting their employer brand within their website and on social media – which proves time and time again that this effort pays off well in terms of building a strong pipeline. That same level of attention needs to be paid to the recruitment program itself. Make sure the process, from the first contact all the way through to the offer, is humanized with personal touches here and there. The receptionist should know what time the candidate is arriving to the office. HR should provide the job description and an org chart as part of the phone screen. And the hiring manager should insist that she/he is not to be disturbed by people or screens throughout the duration of the interview. These small and easy tips make it very easy for the candidate to discern the type of organization she/he may be joining.

Gotcha! Years ago I was part of an interview panel for a C-level position. One of my colleagues had just completed a FBI-esque interview-training program and was pumped to use some of the questions from that session on the interviewees. It was transparent from the start that the intent of her questions was to “catch” the candidate admitting a weakness or limitation. What was missed on her part however, the perspective gained by all involved that she had trust issues with each candidate we met, which shouldn’t ever be a focus point during an interview. Candidates who may not match up with your company’s values will reveal this gap as part of their answers to your questions – no need to set a trap to see if they fall in; it changes the undertone of the interview itself and for those smart enough to figure out the dynamic at play, will question the interviewer’s true motives.

If you’d like to explore ways we can help you with your recruitment needs or just want to have a chat about options, feel free to reach out to The Marlyn Group at