After a week of interviewing candidates for a position, it’s finally time to meet with the other decision-makers and choose the new employee. Luckily, there is a clear front runner, making the decision pretty easy. However, the bad news is there is a handful of individuals whom you all liked but unfortunately will not be getting the position. So next week you’ll not only have to inform them of the bad news but you may also be asked to give some constructive feedback.
This is a tricky situation for hiring managers and interviewers as you may not be sure how to deliver the news. Above all, it’s important to approach this in a professional manner and at the end of the day it is simply a nice thing to do. Also, you just never know when a person you must reject now will be the perfect hire down the line.
Here are some tweaks you can make to your interview process to allow you to be better prepared for these conversations.
Give Feedback in a Timely Fashion
If you think back to your prior interviews, you probably remember a time where an interview went very well, only for it to end in an unanticipated rejection. You are left wondering what went wrong and you immediately ask the person for some feedback to help you out. It then takes weeks for them to give you a response and it sounds more like an answer from Siri than from an actual person.
This is a time-sensitive matter for interviewers because being quick and genuine will keep the candidate from having a negative experience with your organization. Something you don’t want if they have the potential to join you in the future.
Have Specific Selection Criteria You Can Point To
During the hiring process it’s important to have 4-5 specific criteria you are judging for the position. This will not only help your hiring decision, but will also enable you to give clear, concise feedback afterwards. Use the criteria as your guide when providing rejected candidates feedback. This ensures you’re being genuine with them. It’s possible that a candidate excelled in 4 out of 5 criteria, but the one who was chosen hit on all 5. While this is still disappointing to candidates, it shows them how close they were and that your decision simply came down to numbers.