Preparing a candidate for the selection process with a client is the ‘last mile’ effort for any recruiter. Unfortunately, many talented candidates are often left clueless about the selection process and how to face interviews.

Due to their lack of knowledge, candidates often feel underconfident, preventing them from performing their level best for job interviews.

Ultimately, a job interview can only be successful if a candidate is well prepared.

You must ensure that candidates are briefed well before assigning them to any client selection process.

By guiding candidates on interview preparation, not only are you building your credibility and fulfilling your duty, you are also providing the best possible experience for your candidates.

To effectively prepare candidates for an interview, here are 5 tips to keep in mind.

1. Prepare a Well-Crafted Resume

Most candidates have a single resume format that they send for every vacancy.

Despite years of experience, it is impossible to describe yourself in a few paragraphs or just a single page.

Candidates should highlight particular skillsets or aspects on their resume, which will help them be considered for a specific job.

For example, if a candidate is applying for a ‘customer service’ job, their resume should highlight similar jobs and keywords like ‘service’ or ‘support.’

They could also highlight voluntary/community work done.

Ultimately, a candidate should highlight critical aspects that would help the employer understand how well fit they are for a role, rather than giving out a laundry list of all qualifications, roles, and achievements that may be of little interest to the employer.

Also, it’s important to remember that most candidates are not regular job seekers, so they won’t have an updated resume handy.

Hence, recruiters can go a step ahead and guide candidates on tweaking their resumes before forwarding them to prospective employers.

2. Brief Them About Your Client

One of the essential factors in a successful job interview is displaying awareness about the employer’s organization.

A candidate should be able to present themselves effectively, but they should also come prepared by doing their homework about your client!

Recruiters can create a document or a handbook containing the most relevant information before the interview process to make this easier for candidates.

Here is a brief checklist of actions to be taken and relevant information that a candidate should read up on before going for an interview:

  • Visit the company website and study the necessary details, including; Office locations, manufacturing facilities, business lines/products/services, and business size
  • Details about the industry and competitors
  • Prepare a list of questions that you may like to ask the interviewer
  • Understand the selection process that an employer would follow
  • Dress code, if any, for the process. The best option is to be formally dressed or at least opt for a semi-formal attire.
  • The exact time and the correct location for the interview
  • Any other information that the recruiter is aware of which would be useful to the candidate
  • The recruiter may also set automated text/email reminders one day before and an hour before the interview.

Remember that recruiters are in the best position to brief a candidate about an employer as you’ll have a better idea about them and their history.

3. Preparation for Common Interview Questions

Most interviews are followed in a structured method.

The primary purpose is to understand the candidate and their fitness for the role. This would involve the candidate’s assessment of specific competencies required for the role.

Most recruiters widely adopt behavioral interviews to measure candidate competencies.

To effectively prepare candidates for these types of interviews, recruiters can conduct ‘mock interviews.’

Mock interviews are an excellent way to understand a candidate’s weaknesses and strengths for the interview process.

Some common questions candidates can prepare for are:

  • What new skills have you picked up in the last few months specific to your work area?
  • Have you recently faced any roadblocks or obstacles in your work, and how did you overcome them?

Answers to these questions give interviewers insight into a candidate’s thought process and how adaptable they are. You can ask candidates to tailor their answers to highlight the skills that will help them achieve objectives related to their role.

Read more: How can recruiters assess candidates accurately?

4. Have Candidates Recognize Their Strengths & Weaknesses

The primary goal is to assess how well-suited a candidate is for a role. One of the most commonly asked questions is about strengths and weaknesses to understand a candidate.

Ensure that your candidate has a clear idea of exactly how to present their strengths and weaknesses.

Have your candidate memorize their most significant professional achievements and instances where they have added value to their employers in the past.

Encourage candidates to think of relevant achievements relevant to the role so that the interviewer can see their potential for similar output in their company.

The best advice would be to have your candidates tailor their answers to highlight the most relevant skills to help achieve long-term objectives related to the role.

Also, you can ask candidates how they can frame their weaknesses or any gaps positively.

To put your candidates in the best position for interviews, provide them the tools they need to make an interviewer feel they have learned from their experience and can deal with adversities confidently, using their problem-solving skills.

5. Regularly Connect with the Candidate

With so much work on their plates, it’s common for recruiters to go about their work mechanically.

Once a job offer has been made to your candidate, there are still no guarantees as you get paid only if the candidate joins the new job.

Typically notice periods at work can range from one to six months, depending on the job role level. This notice period leaves enough time for candidates to change their minds.

For this reason, it’s essential for recruiters to consistently communicate and remain in touch with the candidate and constantly gauge and confirm the candidate’s inclination to join the new role.

Any sign of hesitancy from a candidate is a red flag. In this case, recruiters must confide in the client and stay prepared with backup candidates.

Prepping candidates for interviews is a highly underrated stage, but it is worth the effort as a bad interview can reflect poorly on your agency.

Ultimately, helping candidates perform their best will benefit you and your agency.

A successful interview will lead to a successful placement and the best candidate and client experience. With this approach, thoroughly preparing candidates for interviews will be worthwhile!