Does the thought of giving feedback after a job interview make you nervous? If yes, then you’re probably not alone. No one likes being rejected, and most hiring managers don’t like giving rejections either.
But the average job opening attracts 250 resumes, and you’ll typically only extend one offer. So that’s a lot of rejections and a lot of potential candidates asking for feedback.
How can you make your feedback kind yet constructive? Here are 5 of our best interview feedback tips:
1. Provide Interview Feedback at All Stages
Most hiring managers don’t give feedback until a candidate asks for it, usually after they’ve been rejected from the job. To improve the process for the candidate and you as well, give them feedback after each stage of the interview process.
2. Treat Candidates Like People
When you receive hundreds of resumes, it can be difficult to see the real person behind a bulleted list of skills and experiences.
However, it’s crucial when giving good feedback to remember that each candidate is a real person — don’t give them generic, cookie-cutter feedback. Most candidates will be able to see right through this, and it may look bad for your organization.
Take the time to show respect for the candidate and give customized, honest feedback. After all, they took time out of their day to apply and maybe even interview with your company. So show them the respect that they deserve.
3. Be Critical but Kind
As a hiring manager, it’s crucial to provide constructive criticism and not to be overly critical. The opposite is just as bad. Being too kind and not offering any real tips that the candidate can use is not beneficial either.
To find the right balance, it’s best to lead with a kind note and then build into the constructive criticism. Compliment the candidate, or simply say that you really appreciate the time they took to apply and interview. After that, tell them a few things you think they could improve on next time.
This combination will make your organization look friendly, while still offering them advice they can use.
4. Back Up Your Comments
It’s always helpful to have examples, especially during the feedback process.
The best way to do this is to make sure you take detailed notes in the interview to reference when you’re giving feedback.
So instead of just telling a candidate that they didn’t answer a question properly, give them specific points on how to improve next time.
In the end, about 75% of candidates don’t hear back from a potential employer, so it will benefit your company and how that you’re taking the time to really answer their questions instead of ignoring them.
5. Don’t Make Too Many Promises
As a hiring manager, you’re likely to run into two types of candidates you have to reject: ones that you like, but just aren’t a fit for the current position, and ones that you know won’t work for your company at all.
When you’re dealing with the latter, make sure you don’t make them any promises you can’t keep. While it can be awkward to tell someone that they’ll never work for your company, telling them you’ll “keep in touch” might warrant unwanted follow-ups and phone calls.
It’s best to be honest with the candidate and tell them that you just don’t see a fit with your company and their skill set. If possible, recommend other companies or hiring managers you know that might be looking for someone like them.
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