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Interviewing Tips and Tools

The tools and information provided below are intended to help managers with the hiring process.

Telephone Pre-Screen Forms

Telephone Pre-Screen Form for Faculty [PDF]

Telephone Pre-Screen Form for Professional Staff [PDF]

Reference Checking Form [PDF]

Interview Do's and Don'ts

Interview Do's

  • DO evaluate internal and external candidates consistently on the same criteria.
  • DO ensure that you conduct an interview prior to making an employment decision, especially if you are considering an internal candidate.  Whether you worked with a candidate closely or you are simply familiar with their work, don't skip over the internal interview.  Knowledge of an applicant doesn't necessarily mean they will perform well in your position.
  • DO call your Talent Acquisition Consultant for further interview preparation and questions templates.
  • DO provide directions to campus, name and titles of interviewers and the estimated time to allow for the interview.  Be respectful of the interviewee's time. 
  • DO contact the Disability Resources office if a candidate requests accommodations.
  • DO prepare yourself for the interview in advance by reviewing the resume, job description, application and developing your questions.
  • DO start the interview by setting the agenda.
  • DO tailor your questions to the job description.
  • DO take notes, but never on the applicant's resume.
  • DO allow silence so the applicant can gather his/her thoughts.
  • DO apply the 70/30 rule. In the best interviews, the interviewer typically talks about 30% of the time, allowing the applicant to do most of the talking.
  • DO sell Drexel as an employer of choice.  Share your positive experiences about your employer.
  • DO ask situational/behavior questions.
  • DO allow the applicant time to ask questions.
  • DO ask about the candidate's plans for the role (this provides you with information on motivation and how long it will take them to get up and running).
  • DO ensure you ask the same questions of every interviewee.  Consistency is important.
  • DO role play (provide a simulation of the work experience) when possible.
  • DO be honest about salary.  If you don't have the budget a candidate is looking for, tell them up front.  Do not insinuate that you can convince your budget administrator and HR Compensation to increase the budget because of their superior skills.  Pay equity is important across the University.  The candidate should be comfortable with the range discussed, and should not be surprised when they receive their offer of employment.
  • DO ensure you provide equal and consistent interviews for all most qualified candidates.  Ensure you conduct all interviews scheduled.
  • DO update applicants either via the Drexel Careers email communication system (by changing the applicant's status) or by personally notifying the interviewee of their status (whether they are moving forward or not in the process).  The most common complaint from applicants is that employers don't follow up or notify them of their status.  See your Talent Acquisition Consultant for templates.
  • DO ask about gaps in employment.

Interview DON'Ts

  • DON'T discuss any of the following topics:
    • Age
    • Citizenship
    • Prior claims/charges/lawsuits against employers
    • Disabilities/handicaps/medical conditions
    • Military status/veteran's status
    • National original/ancestry
    • Race/color
    • Religion
    • Sex/Pregnancy
    • Sexual Orientation/Preference
    • Marriage
    • Parental Status
    • Residence
    • Transportation
  • DON'T assume you know everything there is to know about the candidate.
  • DON'T ask questions you already know the answer to.
  • Unexpected danger zones:
    • "When did you graduate?" or "Did you go to school with John Doe?"
      • Although not directly asking years of age, the information could be used to determine age, which is not job-related.
    • "Where do you normally hang out on weekends?"
      • Their response could provide a level of personal information that an interviewer does not require to make hiring decisions.
    • "Oh yes, I saw that on Facebook/Twitter/LinkedIn."
      • This comment implies that you are using personal information, found on a personal site, to determine the candidate's qualifications.
      • Don't search Facebook/Twitter/LinkedIn or any other social media to find additional information or communicate with an interviewee.
    • Conducting internal interviews out of courtesy.
      • If you aren't serious about the candidate, do not move forward with an interview. Too often internal interviews are scheduled due to protocol, and the time of the candidate and the interviewer is wasted.  Prior experience and job performance are the most important criterion in determining whether or not to interview someone, not courtesy.  Keep in mind that internal candidates are likely to be around after the search, so it is especially important to treat them with respect, which includes being honest about their suitability for a job.