Five Qualities and Characteristics Recruiters Look for in Face-to-Face Interviews

face to face interview

Do you know what recruiters and hiring managers want to hear from you during an interview?

If you are in the middle of a job search, you’ve undoubtedly contemplated this question. Indeed, searching for a job can sometimes feel like an audition for America’s Got Talent. While you won’t need to sing, dance, or perform magic tricks when interviewing for your next job, you will need to be prepared to go in with your eyes open.

Here are five essential qualities and characteristics recruiters and career experts tell us they want to discover during an interview.

Communication of Motivations and Preferences

Recruiters are always searching for quality candidates that fit their company culture. In the current job market, it is essential to be honest about your motivations, expectations, and work-life preferences, how far you are willing to commute or if you are interested in flexible work options. So be ready for hiring managers or recruiters to ask why you are looking for a new career opportunity, how far you will commute, or if you prefer urban, suburban, or rural areas.

Confidence in Skills and Experience

Hiring managers are keen in extracting a candidate’s knowledge, experience, abilities, and skills by following a common thread that winds through all your work experience. You can illustrate a strong hiring case by describing the details of your most significant career accomplishments and contributions.

Preparing stories and concise examples of your impact will leave a positive impression on anyone with whom you may interview. Demonstrate your ability to make the department or organization better than before by using specific examples. (For example, you may have streamlined a process or reduced costs. You may have even led a team to quantifiable success.)

Bill McCabe, Talent Acquisition Leader at Polyglass USA, said, “People who contribute to the success of an organization are the reason we hire, retain and promote. Therefore, a candidate should be able to simply articulate how they moved the needle in a positive direction in an organization.”

Preparation for Moving Further in the Process

According to Glassdoor research, the average time for the job interview process is 23.8 days. However, some industries rely on a more lengthy and intense interviewing process, while others can screen candidates much more quickly. For this reason, recruiters look for prepared candidates who will move through the hiring and interviewing process efficiently.

In today’s digital world, having a current email address, LinkedIn URL, and other methods of connecting with references are vital.

You should also be ready to discuss your salary expectations at any time. Know Your Worth is a recommended tool offered from Glassdoor that will keep you informed and prepared to negotiate at a moment’s notice. This preparation also allows the recruiter to match you with the best hiring company prospects, maximizing everyone’s time and decreasing the chances of either party being blindsided.

Show How You’ve Grown by Being Honest and Reflective about Professional Failures or Shortcomings

In the advanced stages of the process, it is common for hiring managers to ask you about your biggest failure. By answering this question successfully, you will show in an honest manner that you can reflect on where you struggle professionally. In addition, it shows that you have self-awareness, a soft skill becoming increasingly necessary in the workplace.

The next step is to share with the interviewer how you have addressed this weakness or failure. For example, you may have owned the shortcoming immediately and created a plan to avoid future issues. Or maybe you attended a training course or worked with a mentor after the incident. Mentioning the steps you have taken along with identifying and addressing an area of the challenge will demonstrate growth and maturity. Remember, don’t blame others, as how you fail in the present will prove how you can be in the future.

Be Open About What It Will Take to Poach You

Because of current low unemployment rates, recruiters are “poaching” employed people, left and right. As such, recruiters must inspire candidates to hear them out, often enticing them with higher salaries or incentives like sign-on bonuses or stock options.

If you find yourself in a situation where a recruiter is trying to tempt you with an opportunity, it’s necessary to communicate with the company respectfully and professionally. Be candid about what it would take to lure you away from your current job: a higher salary, access to education and training, access to an onsite gym, a flexible work schedule, etc.

Because it is a job seeker’s market, show you are open to an offer the company comes back with. Positive communication is critical for maintaining a solid reputation regardless of the offer and whether you are interested in being poached or not.

ALIGN specializes in executive recruitment. Call us to discuss how we can help you.

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