The Value of Behavioral Interview Questions

May 8th, 2015

Resumes and transcripts tell you where a job seeker’s been and what they’ve done in the past, but that’s only part of what you want to find out before making a hiring decision. You need to get a sense of how they’ll do going forward—how they’ll react to the specific challenges they will face in the job you’re hiring them for. Behavioral interview questions help you figure that out. Some studies claim behavioral interviewing is 55 percent predictive of future behavior, much higher than the predictive results from traditional interviews.

Behavioral Interview Questions

Behavioral interview questions probe more deeply than the typical “Tell me about yourself” questions. These questions don’t focus on confirming the information on candidates’ resumes and transcripts, but ask candidates to talk about when they demonstrated desirable behaviors.

Before integrating behavioral interviewing into your hiring process, decide which qualities you are looking for. These can be skills such as critical thinking, personal characteristics like self-confidence, or specific job requirements such as making persuasive presentations. Once you’ve decided on the qualities, plan to ask interview questions where the answers will demonstrate those qualities.

Usually, behavioral interview questions require candidates to talk about a specific type of situation and their response to it. For instance, depending on your priorities, you can ask a potential employee to describe a crisis and their response to it, or talk about a time when they had to work as part of a team, or discuss a situation where they had to take on a leadership role. Look for the candidate to answer based on actual experiences, rather than hypothetical situations.

Because behavioral interview questions are so open ended, there is no right or wrong response. The process requires asking follow-up questions to dig deeper and get more details from the candidate, confirm they are consistent, and validate their answer. It’s important to know in advance how you will evaluate and compare candidates’ responses to these questions.

Help With Your Hiring

Finding the best new hire requires a strong search process as well as effective interviewing. Contact InReach IT Solutions to find out how we can help. If you have an open job where you’d like our help, provide the job details and we’ll be in touch.


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