If you utilize a construction recruiter to expand your access to the top talent required to build your dream team, then you must be prepared when it’s time to meet face-to-face. The interview tips below help to ensure your first impression is positive, and you send the message that you are prepared and serious about your candidates.

The First Impression

It’s true; you never have a second chance to make a first impression. While your candidate has researched your company and was prescreened by your construction recruiter, this is their first chance to experience your company firsthand. Make sure your office or interview location is clean, uncluttered, distraction-free, and comfortable. If you or your company has awards or accolades, place them in a location in the lobby where they are front and center or display them in a featured location in your office or interview space.

Talk To Your Recruiter

A common mistake hiring managers make, especially when working with a construction recruiter for the first time, is being under prepared to meet their candidate. You must do more than read through your candidate’s resume and prescreening results and learn why your recruiter has deemed them a potential match for your open position. The goal is for your candidate to walk through the door feeling like you are interviewing them specifically, not just anyone who might apply for your job opening.

Ask questions that go beyond their resume:

  • Why are they ready to take on a new role?
  • Why do they want to work for you?
  • What is the most pertinent thing you need to do to win them over?
  • What are their biggest roadblocks? Balance, relocation, benefits, salary, etc.
  • Why did your recruiter select them for you?

Candidly Discuss Your Concerns, And Theirs

There are always concerns with any applicant you interview. Maybe they are relocating, taking a major pay cut, are overqualified, or lack one or more of the skill-sets you require. Your candidate will also have concerns about your company. Be open to discussing these concerns with candor, especially if you are hoping this client will leave their current employer to work for you. While your first interview is not the time for salary negotiations, it is the time to discuss a drastic reduction in pay.

Practice The 50/50 Rule—Or Do It One Better

Gone are the days of asking questions during an interview. Candidates now expect to be engaged in a dialogue. Ask open-ended questions and encourage elaboration. The goal is that your candidate does 50 percent of the talking or, ideally, over 50 percent.

Interview Tips: Covering The Basics

The interview tips below may seem basic, but are sometimes forgotten:

  • Arrive on time and with a bottle of water.
  • Make small talk first, and get to business second.
  • Interview in a private room.
  • Turn off all electronics and distractions.
  • Have their resume right in front of you.
  • Take notes.
  • Have both job-specific and candidate-specific questions prepared.

Last, when your interview is complete, your candidate should clearly understand what will happen next. This includes when second round interviews will be held and who they will hear from next.

For more interview tips, talk with your dedicated construction recruiter at The Birmingham Group.