The time involved in reviewing resumes, setting up interviews, and actually conducting interviews is a huge time commitment. No one wants to waste their time sitting through another awkward hour-long interview that won’t lead to a job offer.
As a hiring manager, there’s nothing more disappointing than being 10 minutes into a face-to-face interview and knowing this candidate isn’t the one. As a candidate, there’s nothing more frustrating than taking off of work and preparing for the interview only to not get the job.
What’s the alternative? I propose 10-15 minute mini phone interviews.
Mini phone interviews:
- Can be conducted by anyone
- Focuses on questions that show basic knowledge of processes and/or definitions related to the position
- Results in decisions whether to have a full length phone and/or face-to-face interview
Here’s some starter questions for mini phone interviews…
- Describe the steps you’d take to…
- What are three things you’d take into account when…
- How do you define…
- What laws, policies, or regulations relate to…
Note that these questions are declarative or ask for basic procedures. These questions are different from the typical questions that you ask in a full interview that get to how someone handled a specific situation. You’ll also note, there’s no follow up questions to get more information. As a result, anyone could conduct the interview with zero experience or subject matter expertise in the job.
After the call, the interviewee’s answers are checked. You can then make a decision of whether to spend any more time with the candidate with very little upfront investment of time.
Just 10-15 minutes could save you hours in interviews and the candidate hours in preparation.
As a bonus, using these mini phone interviews are great opportunities for administrative staff, junior employees, and even interns in conducting low-risk interviews to develop communication and interview skills.
If you’ve ever used a mini phone interview, please share your experience in the comments. Or, if you’ve been a candidate that was in a mini phone interview we’d love to hear what your experience was on the other side of the phone.