Welcome to this presentation on how to use the online tool, Interview Generator, available at www.BuildAnInterview.com. In this demonstration we’re going to show you how to create a customised interview guide you can use to interview candidates for job vacancies. For the purposes of this demonstration, we are going to assume that you are the hiring manager .
Our approach is for hiring managers to create and use customised, structured interview guides that are built from the core competencies of the specific position to be filled. As this slide indicates, first you will need to build the interview guide so that it reflects the job for which you will interview. Then, you use the interview guide during the interview to ask behaviour description interviewing questions, probe for more information, record the candidate’s responses, and stay on track. Then, once the interview is over and the candidate has left the room, you use the interview guide to make any additional notes you may have and to rate the candidate on the competencies measured in the interview. The guide also has a section where you can compare all candidates for a given position to arrive at an overall recommendation for hire.
You can use Interview Generator if you or your organization has registered and purchased units or a site license. You may have been issued demo units to try the system for free, as well. In any event, you will need a user name and password from the Build An Interview site administrator before attempting to use the system. Remember that interview guides are confidential materials used to make hiring decisions. Please be careful to keep any interviewing materials secure and safe. It is critical to treat selection materials as confidential and must not be left out for others to read, review, or copy. Further, once comments and notes have been recorded on these materials, it is equally important to follow set filing procedures so that the integrity of these materials is not compromised and individuals’ privacy is not violated, as well.
Now let’s talk about how to prepare to build a job interview guide. You or your recruitment consultant should have already drafted a job posting for the open job. You will need to have the job posting in front of you when you are ready to create an interview guide. Before you start, review the job responsibilities and requirements. When you start to create an interview guide you’ll want to be clear about the key factors for which you will focus so you can select the best candidate for the job. Other materials you may want to have at your disposal are any advertisements for the job that have been created, job specification or classification documents, and any other descriptive documents that can help you better understand what it takes to be successful in the job. It can be helpful to talk to, or even interview, successful job incumbents – past or present -- to get a better sense of job demands and success factors. Another factor to consider in preparing for the selection process is to consider technological or system changes that may have occurred since the job was recruited for previously. An up-to-date job description is essential to effective staff selection.
Another helpful planning tool in addition to the job description is the Interview Worksheet that lists the 60 core competencies that are in the interview-building system. You can find this worksheet within the Interview Generator system both in the Interviewer Resources section at the top of the page and also in the section on building a new interview guide. It is also available in the attachments part of this presentation along with a sample interview guide from Interview Generator. The worksheet can be a helpful tool in terms of checking off the competencies that are most critical to success on the job. You will find that you will want to include more competencies, or skills, than can be reasonably included in a typical job interview, given the amount of time you can devote to interviewing candidates. It is recommended that you include 6-8 non-technical competency categories in your job interviews, though the system allows as many as 10 and as few as 3 competencies for inclusion.
Let’s assume that you have completed your preparation for building a new job interview and have your completed job posting, collected other relevant doc and selected & ranked your core competencies. Now let’s talk about how you should get started using the system. First, you will need to enter your user name and password into the home page of www.BuildAnInterview.com. Once you’re in the program will open and you will be greeted by this screen: Welcome to Interview Generator The information on this home page just lists some simple, explanatory information about the system which we will cover in the rest of this presentation in some detail.
On the left side of every screen in Interview Generator is a toolbar that you use to navigate within the site. The first button, Clients, simply contains information about your account. You can update the information in this section, if you like. The second button, Competencies, contains the 60 competency categories with definitions that we use as the basis for constructing our interview guides. The third button, Target Behaviors/Questions, lists the interview questions that go with each of the competencies and a target behavior for each question that gives you a benchmark in terms of what to look for when you ask a particular interview question. You can also add additional targeted behaviour questions to this section. “ Interviews” is probably the section of the site you will use most often, as this is where you go to create, edit, download and print-out your interview guides. The next button, System credits, shows the number of credits or expiration date of you license, if you have a license. The “Resources” section contains hundreds of articles, job aids and other useful information for interviewers and interviewees. Browse this section when you have time to do so.
Now let’s work our way through the site, starting with the Competencies section. This section houses the 60 “generic,” non-technical competencies that we saw listed on the Interview Worksheet, and any ”custom” competencies that may have been entered. Some of the competencies listed include: communication skills, cooperation and collaboration, teamwork orientation, leadership ability, creativity, and many more. Competencies can be thought of as the skills, knowledge, abilities and personal qualities that lead to successful performance on the job. Another way to think about competencies is as “the distinguishing characteristics of successful performance.” This definition of competencies is useful because it helps us focus on those personal qualities that are most critical to success on the job, rather than interviewing for a “list” of abilities that are common to many jobs. You may find it useful to go to the Competencies section of Interview Generator to review the categories there and narrow down your selection criteria when constructing an interview.
If you click on any competency in this list you bring up its definition. This can be useful when you are refining the list of competencies to include in your interview. For example, consider the competencies: problem solving, analytical skills and critical thinking. These three competencies are quite similar to one another, but each presents a slightly different success factor. By viewing the definitions you can get clearer on which competency fits the job best. On this slide you see the competency “Communication Skills” and its definition: Communication looks at the extent to which an individual communicates with economy and clarity, and remains open to feedback to improve communication skills in the future. This competency asks the question “How well do you design and send messages and attentively listen to responses in order to adjust?” You may want to become familiar with the competencies in the system before you begin building an actual interview guide.
You can also enter new competencies into the system. Do this by simply clicking on the option: “create a new competency” on the Competencies page and it will bring up empty fields in which you can add the competency name and definition. It is probably unlikely that you will need to add new competencies to Interview Generator, as the system already contains many common categories that are typically included in a job interview. You will see later in this presentation that there is a place in the interview guide to include any technical questions you may have. Because there are so many different technical skills used in our Company, it is best if you do not enter these into the Competencies section of the site, but rather, use the interview guide itself for technical competencies and technical interview questions. I’ll explain this in more detail later.
Now let’s move on to the next section of the site: target behaviors and interview questions. This section contains the database of material that is the “heart-and-soul” of Interview Generator – the database contains over 3,000 individual interview questions that are arranged by competency and by level, which we will cover in a moment. When you click on Target Behaviors/Questions it will bring up a screen that says, “search by” and then shows a drop-down menu with the competencies listed, as shown in this screen.
The second drop-down menu in this section is “question level,” which governs the actual interview questions and target behaviors that exist in the system under each competency. When you select a competency and then specify a level and hit “search,” the system will search the database and bring up the targeted behavior and questions that relate to that particular competency. You can then review it and see if it fits the job. If not, you can always add new material to a particular competency. We will review how to add new material to a particular competency shortly in this presentation. Question Levels in Interview Generator may NOT be the same as job levels you are familiar with or are in use at your company. There are four question levels to choose from in Interview Generator, and these are: 1 = non-exempt, or entry-level jobs such as clerk, human resources assistant, computer operator, or warehouse worker 2 = exempt, technical / professional positions that are not people-managers, such as Attorney, many information systems specialists, account representatives, engineers, and project managers 3 = supervisors, managers of people, and some team leaders 4 = managers of managers, executive or senior managers Please select the question level that best fits the overall level of responsibility for the job. You can only select questions from one level however, there are generally questions within each competency that can crossover say between Level 2: Technical and Professional to Level 3: Supervisory and Manager level, for example.
Once you set the competency and the level and hit “search”, a list of target behaviors will come up like the one shown on this slide. In this example, the competency is “analytical skills” at level 3 and there are 8 target behaviors showing. For any given competency at any given level, at least 6 and as many as 25 target behaviors will appear. As this slide indicates, target behaviors represent the “look for” behaviors associated with successful job performance, and should approximate what is expected of the individual once on the job. When you are using the system you should glance down this list and see which target behaviors fit the job the best. As in this example, I will read to you the first two target behaviors as a sample: Conducts sound analyses, formulates own conclusions and prepares excellent summaries with recommendations for top management. Guides and helps others understand and take logical action. In each case, you can click on one or more and select target behavior you like and it will bring up the associated interview question.
Here is the interview question that goes with the first target behavior under “analytical” at level 3: Tell me about a program you evaluated for effectiveness, what your recommendation was, and how you communicated your message to senior management. If you were to use this interview question in an interview, you would be looking for the behavior it is paired with, which is: Conducts sound analyses, formulates own conclusions and prepares excellent summaries with recommendations for top management. You would have to use your judgment, of course, to evaluate the quality of the candidate’s response, but having a target behavior available to refer to helps you make better decisions about the candidate’s readiness to succeed with respect to a particular competency, in this case, analytical skills.
In planning your interview, when you look through the target behaviors and interview questions that already exist for a particular competency at a particular level, you may not see exactly what you are looking for, and then you can simply add material that may suit your purpose better. Just remember that when you add material to the database the system will retain it and it will be available to others who use your account, not all users of Interview Generator, just whoever uses your account in Interview Generator. To add new behavior/question pairs, simply click on “add another target behavior/question,” enter the new information, and be sure to hit “update” or the system will not save your data. When writing new material be sure to use similar language and format in creating target behaviors and interview questions. Target behaviors should be descriptive and specific; interview questions should be behavioral. Behavioral questions ask the candidate for specific examples of something he or she has done in the past and usually start with a question “stem”, such as: Tell me about a time when … Describe a situation you experienced … Give me an example to illustrate To return to the Target Behaviors/Questions section, click on “Back To Target Behaviors/Questions.” To exit completely and start building an interview guide, click on “Interviews” on the far left hand side.
Let’s now go to the fourth button on the left toolbar, “Interviews.” This is where you go once your planning is done and you are ready to create an interview guide. Once you click on “Interviews,” the top of the screen says: Creating custom interview guides is quick and easy! How do you want to proceed? As you see on this slide, the choices are to: Create Your Own Interview Modify or download a Library Interview I’m not sure Go to my “in progress” interviews Go to my “completed interviews” The choice of “I’m not sure” can be a helpful place to start and once you click on the link, you will be taken to the page that will tell you that you have two options in customizing a job interview: create your own interview from &quot;scratch&quot;, or start with a Library Job from our database and simply edit the content to customize it. A general rule of thumb is that you will probably want to create a new interview if the job is very unique, or different from the jobs already in the library. If you would like to use a generic interview guide that has been created, simply look through the interview titles by clicking on the appropriate Job Family on the Interviews screen, shown here.
If you set out to build an interview guide, start by selecting the correct job family which should appear on the posting, or job description. This will bring up all the existing interview guides in the system within that job family. On this slide you’ll see that the job family of Engineering was selected, which brought up the job, Environmental Planner. A synopsis of the interview is shown here with it’s title, brief description, date created. Your options at this point are: Print (or download the interview guide “as is” without making any changes to it) If you opt to print then the system will take you to a report generator that will allow you to download the interview guide immediately to your choice of formats – html, PDF, Word (long), Word (Short). Edit it as you like, which is probably the most common choice will be to edit , in which case you will make the appropriate changes before saving the new interview, download it, and use it, or Delete it, used to “clean up the system” and get rid of any interview guides that are duplicates, unfinished or otherwise not needed in the system. If you choose to delete the guide, you will lose it forever from the system, so make sure of this choice because others may want to access a particular interview guide in the future. You should only delete the interview guide, if you have created it.
If you select “edit an interview guide” you will get a pop-up message that says: Editing this interview guide will result in a new interview guide being created. You will need to change the title of the interview guide to reflect the nature of this new, edited interview guide. This caution tells you that the original job you are choosing to edit will be maintained in the system and that your edits should be saved under another job title, even if it is only slightly different, so as to differentiate it from the original and allow other account users of the system to use it for their edits, as well. The screen shot on this slide shows the job in “edit” mode. That is, the title is shown, in this case an Environmental Planner copy, so you should enter the appropriate new title to reflect this new job interview. For example, you might call it: Environmental Planner, Northwest because the job is located in a particular region, or Environmental Planner II because it is a senior-level position – just be sure not to leave the word, “copy” in the Job Position/Interview Name field. Similarly, the Interview Description follows and is in edit mode, so you can cut and paste into this field, or modify it on-screen to fit your open job. The description is not intended to be a full job description, but just a summary. The word limit is about 150 words for this field, and if you exceed this number it will add another page to the interview guide when you produce it, which is unnecessary and doesn’t look very attractive, either, so try to stay under the 150 word limit for the description. The interview level cannot be changed while in edit mode. If you want to change the level you must either select another job from the “library” or create a new interview guide. This is because the database of questions and behaviors is set to pull up the right level of material and should not “mix and match” material from other levels. The Job Family can be changed and also new job families can be added, however if you have many users in your account you may want to consider to correspond with your official organizational job structure.
Still in edit mode, the next task is to review the pre-set competencies for the position and see if you want to change these, or leave them “as is.” You will see these listed on the same page as we just looked at, only further down the page, so you may need to scroll down a bit. You will see the text: The competencies below were pre-selected for this Library Job Interview. You may keep the competencies as they are, or change some or all of the pre-selected competencies, as you wish. You are limited to a maximum of 10 competencies at one time. In this case, there are 8 competencies listed that include: Ability to Take Initiative/Responsibility Analytical skills Change management ability Leadership ability Levels of innovation Negotiation skills Organization / planning skills Teamwork orientation You can remove any of these preset competencies and you can select new ones by clicking on button just above the list that says: Select Competencies, which brings up a menu of the 60 competencies with the pre-selected ones in a navy color, the unselected ones in red, and you can check off any that you want to include and hit, SAVE at the bottom of the screen to save your changes.
Once you have picked the competency categories you want to include in your interview guide, the next step is to click on each competency individually and review the list of target behaviors and interview questions and check those you want to include in your interview guide. The first two pairs of questions/behaviors will usually be checked automatically – these are the default selections. As your review the list, simply uncheck any material you do not want to include and check the box next to the pairs you do want to include. Be sure to review these pairs carefully and pick the ones that really fit your job the best. Remember from the section earlier on Target Behaviors/Questions that you can always add new material to the system if what you want is not there. If you want to do this, you can save your interview for further editing as “in progress”, go back to the Target Behaviors/Questions button and add new material as you like. Then, when you are ready to resume building your interview guide you can find it again in the Interviews section under My Incomplete Interviews and choose to edit it again. Just remember that you may need to delete copies of copies if you go in and out of an interview guide repeatedly, as the system will always retain the earlier version for safety (so nothing is lost). Once you have selected the correct pairs, scroll to the bottom of the list and hit UPDATE. The system will then re-sort the list with your selections at the top so you can do a final review. Once you are ready to move on, select Back to Interview Details and repeat this process for all competencies until you have selected all of the questions you want to use in your interview.
Back on the “Interview Details” page with the description of the job and competencies listed you need to finish off the interview guide by either: Saving your work by clicking Save my in progress work for more editing later shown at the top of this slide (the long bar), or Complete this Interview , which will take you directly to the report generator to print or save the guide You must take one of these actions or your work will be lost. The message shown in red on this slide is a reminder to check your work carefully before clicking on Complete this Interview .
Before we move on to generating interview reports, or guides, let’s talk briefly about what to do if you decide to build your own interview “from scratch” yourself. This process is easy to follow once you have been through the process of editing an interview guide to suit your own purpose. Thus, it is recommended that you not start with this option, but instead, go through at least one editing process first, and then you will be ready to build your own interview yourself. The same steps are followed, but you must be prepared with a concise job description, accurate job title, clarity about the job family and Interview Generator level, and your job analysis to set competencies and select interview questions and target behaviors.
Once you complete an interview OR you select PRINT from the Interviews screen, which means you want to download it “as is” without editing, you will be taken to this screen, which is the report generator. Here you customize the look of your interview guide and can save it as a soft copy file on your own computer drive, or print it out as a hard copy. There are three actions you can take here: Set the colors you want to use in the borders and headings, if you use a color printer. Insert your company logo in jpg format and hit the update button and your logo will then appear on your interview guides on page 1. Choose your report format: HTML, PDF, Rich Text Format, or Word. The most popular report format is Rich Text, which you simply save in Word by saving as a .doc document in your own system in either a long or short version. The rather lengthy message in red text at the bottom of this screen advises the user to SAVE any interview reports that you generate in case of system failure or others perhaps altering your interview guides in the future. It is always a good idea to save your reports to your own system as back-up in case the copy within Interview Generator is lost or damaged as a back-up.
The two versions of the interview guide, or report, are very helpful documents to the entire interview experience, not just the competencies section of your interviews. Both Word versions cover the entire interview with open fields to fill in with information about the interview itself – the interviewers names, dates, details about the job – and space for you to insert any technical skills, background or knowledge you intend to assess in the interview. Because this is a Word version with some information loaded in by Interview Generator, you can add to what is there by simply typing in your own material, such as technical requirements, and then save to your own computer. You can also type in your notes about the candidate once the interview is over. This makes the interview guide a complete record of the interviews you conduct and a very critical document because it can serve as a record of what questions the candidate responded to and what the candidate said. As you can see from this slide, the Long version of the report includes helpful material that you might or might not want to use or refer to when conducting interviews. It is recommended that you create one Long version during the selection process for a particular job, and then use the Short version for multiple candidates, since you can always refer to the one Long version throughout the process if you like some of the material, or questions presented there. Rather than review the entire guide in this presentation, please do take the time to go into the Interview Generator system and download both a long and short version of an interview guide and review these in detail before you start using the system for your first round of real interviews.
The last button on the left-side toolbar we want to mention is the Resources section of the site. In this section you can access hundreds of articles and tools related to interviewing in general. Resources are organized into two sections: Interviewees and Interviewers. The Interviewee resources can be downloaded and shared with your employees as you see fit. For example, there are articles on networking, job search strategies, preparing for a behavioral interview, how to respond to difficult interview questions, and proper pre-planning as an interview candidate. The Interviewer section contains information that you and your managers and peers might find useful to improve your skills as an interviewer, such as recruiting best practices, legal pitfalls of interviewing, “reading” the candidate better, partnering with human resources, do’s and don’ts, succession planning, and so on. You may want to schedule time for yourself to review these resources regularly, or build them in to your staff meetings as a development activity with your peers or supervisors.
So that’s it. A very simple process and powerful tool to help you select the right people. Thank you for your time and attention to this presentation. We hope this interviewing tool and system will enrich your important job as a hiring manager in your organization. If you have further questions about how to use this system, please contact us as shown on this slide. Thank you.
How To Use Interview Generator
Create a Job Interview Using Interview Generator www.BuildAnInterview.com
Index <ul><li>26 </li></ul><ul><ul><li>27 </li></ul></ul>Helpful Resources Contact Information 24 – 25 How to create an interview report 23 Building a new I.G. 22 Saving your I.G. 17 – 21 Building Interview Guide 12 – 16 Target Behaviours/Questions 9 – 11 Competencies 7 – 8 Using the Interview Generator System 5 – 6 Getting Started 3 – 4 General Overview Slide Subject
Interview Guides: General Use <ul><li>Step 1 : Build the Interview Guide </li></ul><ul><li>Step 2 : Use the Interview Guide to ask questions, probe and stay on track </li></ul><ul><li>Step 3 : Record Candidates Responses, Rate the Interview, and Compare Candidates for the Position </li></ul>
Interview Generator <ul><li>Access the online interview-building system, Interview Generator by obtaining log in and password from firstname.lastname@example.org </li></ul><ul><li>Interview Guides are highly confidential and must be kept in a safe and secure place. </li></ul>
What do I need before I start? <ul><li>Current job posting </li></ul><ul><li>Update, if necessary </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Consider current changes to the job, such as technological advances </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Make sure you are familiar with the job before starting </li></ul>
Competency Dictionary – A helpful tool <ul><li>Lists the 60 non-technical competencies in the Interview Generator system </li></ul><ul><li>Provides the definition of targeted behaviors </li></ul><ul><li>Download it from Resources, Interviewer at the top of the page </li></ul>
Using the Interview Generator System <ul><li>Home page of Interview Generator </li></ul><ul><li>(www.BuildAnInterview.com) </li></ul>
Navigating in Interview Generator <ul><li>Easy-to-use toolbar is on the left side of every page in the site. </li></ul>
Competencies <ul><li>60 generic competencies </li></ul><ul><li>Opportunity to add custom competencies </li></ul><ul><li>Same as Interview Worksheet </li></ul><ul><li>Review Competencies before starting to build an interview guide. </li></ul>
Competency Definitions <ul><li>Click on a specific competency to bring up its unique definition which always includes a key question to further describe that competency’s meaning </li></ul>
Adding New Competencies <ul><li>New competencies will be visible and accessible to anyone using your account in Interview Generator </li></ul><ul><li>Generally not intended for technical competencies </li></ul>
Levels within Interview Generator <ul><li>“ Levels” within Interview Generator may not correspond to job levels you are familiar with at your company </li></ul><ul><li>Interview Generator question levels refer 1) non-exempt 2) exempt non-manager 3) supervisor / manager of people 4) senior manager or executive </li></ul>
Target Behaviors are Key <ul><li>Target behaviors represent the “look for” behaviors associated with successful job performance </li></ul><ul><li>Target behaviors should approximate what is expected once on the job </li></ul>
Interview Questions <ul><li>Interview questions are paired with target behaviors </li></ul><ul><li>As an interviewer, when you ask a behavioral interview question you should evaluate the quality of the candidate’s response based on the target behavior for that question (close, or way off?) </li></ul>
Adding new behaviors and questions <ul><li>Click on “Add Another Target Behavior/Question” </li></ul><ul><li>Enter new information </li></ul><ul><li>Hit “Update” </li></ul>
Building an Interview Guide <ul><li>Your choices are: </li></ul><ul><li>Create Your Own Interview </li></ul><ul><li>Modify or download a Library Interview </li></ul><ul><li>I’m not sure </li></ul><ul><li>Go to my “in progress” interviews </li></ul><ul><li>Go to my “completed interviews” </li></ul>
Browse Existing Interviews <ul><li>Select the correct Job Family </li></ul><ul><li>Review the jobs listed </li></ul><ul><li>Job title, description and date created are shown </li></ul><ul><li>Choices are: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Print (download) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Edit </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Delete </li></ul></ul>
Edit an Interview <ul><li>You must edit the: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Job Position / Interview Name </li></ul></ul><ul><li>You can edit the: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Job Description </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Job Family </li></ul></ul><ul><li>You cannot edit the: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Job level </li></ul></ul>
Editing Competencies <ul><li>Add competencies to your interview guide </li></ul><ul><li>Remove unwanted pre-selected competencies </li></ul><ul><li>Save your new list of 3-10 competencies </li></ul>
Selecting the right interview questions <ul><li>Select 2-4 Target Behavior/Interview Question pairs per competency, and be sure to hit UPDATE at the bottom </li></ul><ul><li>The list will re-sort with your selected pairs at the top </li></ul><ul><li>Check the list again and if you are happy with it, go back to Competencies and repeat this process for each competency until you have selected all of your questions </li></ul>
Save Your Interview Guides <ul><li>Save your work by clicking Save my in progress work for more editing later , OR </li></ul><ul><li>Complete this Interview , which will take you directly to the report generator to print or save the guide </li></ul><ul><li>You must take one of these actions or your work will be lost </li></ul>
Building a New Interview Guide <ul><li>Follows the same process as “editing” but you must fill in all descriptive information and select your own competencies and target behaviors / questions yourself. </li></ul>
Long and Short Report Versions <ul><li>Short – Just the basics: description, space for technical questions and notes, competency-based questions + space for your notes, rating scales / chart, summary comments </li></ul><ul><li>Long – same as above + helpful process steps, probing / follow-up questions, background questions/notes, candidate questions, closing notes, Candidate Comparison Chart </li></ul>