The Ins and Outs of Building a Winning Interview Team

The Ins and Outs of Building a Winning Interview Team
HireHive Team

HireHive Team


According to the statistics, a single interviewer can choose the best of two similar candidates for a role just 49% of the time. Even when candidates are varied in things like their applicable skill sets, one interviewer can only choose right 84% of the time. That’s a marked improvement, but it’s still a far cry from getting recruitment just right. And, it points to one undeniable fact – interviews aren’t a one-person game. While it might make sense to dedicate just one interviewer for the sake of finances and time-saving, building an interview team can enable a more rounded approach, improved deliberations, and even make your company look better by putting your best team members on display for promising candidates. However, if you’re used to giving the task of interviews to just one person, you might not know where to start building your interview team. Keep on reading to find out who in your company most deserves a spot at the table.

The Numbers Game

Statistics point to the fact that a single interviewer is at real risk of making the wrong recruitment decisions, especially amongst similarly pitted candidates. However, with 93% of candidates reporting pre-interview nerves, you won’t help recruitment by making interviewees face a room filled with people. So, what’s the ideal middle ground? 

It’s generally believed that between three to five interviewers may provide the best odds for success. Without overwhelming your candidates, having three interviewers can increase the odds of making the best hire to around 63%. When you add two more people to that mix, those odds soar to an impressive 94%. Admittedly, those figures continue to rise on paper, with seven interviewers pretty much guaranteed to make the right pick. However, candidates are sure to get nervous in front of that many people, and may even fail to show. So, sticking with five is typically wise. 

The Right Team for Each Stage

Even low-level recruitment, which typically involves around three interview rounds, can take an individual hiring manager up to eight hours of work. When you add even three people into that mix, you stand to lose 24 or more hours of work time. No company can afford that kind of cost for every single drive, and it’s something you can negate by choosing teams based on interview stage, for example – 

  • First interview round: One or two interviewers
  • Second interview round: Three or five interviewers
  • Third/final interview round: Five or seven interviewers

Admittedly, these amounts might vary depending on the role in question, but this is a good guideline for an entry-level position. If a candidate is applying for a management role, you may wish to introduce more people into your interview team early on or incorporate additional interview rounds where other members of your management team can meet the most promising candidates. Simply keep a clear record of where in your recruitment drive each candidate is, and who they’ve already met on your team to avoid unnecessary repetition.

Making Room for a Member of the Recruitment Team

Typically, a member of a company’s recruitment team will be the person to hold at least early-stage interviews. They’ll also be the first port of call for any candidate, and will have the best possible grasp on things like –

  • Interview attendees
  • Client portfolios
  • Application progress
  • Any potential red flags

That makes them a pretty important person to have in the interview room. With the right software, a recruitment professional will also be able to share this information with every member of an interview team in real-time, to ensure that everyone is aware of who’s who in each round. That can save time on pointless questions, and help even high-quality candidates to start building trust in your processes. In-person interview observations also enable a recruitment professional to keep all candidate profiles up to date and to collect feedback from every other member of the interview board, as well as noting their own observations.

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Considering Who a Candidate Will Work With

To be of any real use, an interview team should largely consist of the people a candidate will work most closely with if they get the role. After all, these individuals are the ones who know what skills that role requires, what kind of person would fit into their team, and what they’re ultimately looking for with these interviews. Not to mention that this serves to reveal a little about existing teams or management styles, which can help a candidate decide whether they’re willing to commit to your company. 

Bringing future managers on board for even early-stage interviews is especially vital, as it can help to identify any potential future issues, as well as great personality matches. These are things that you can’t assess on paper or second-hand, but they could make a huge difference to both how well a new hire settles into their role, and how long they’re willing to stick around. 

An Outside View

Bringing in an interview team member from another department can also be useful for ensuring an outside, unbiased view. As mentioned, people who will work with a candidate will already have a preconception of what they’re looking for. This tends to be a good thing, but it could also result in the oversight of promising candidates who think outside of the box or have a different set of applicable skills. 

An outside interviewer with less of a pre-imagined idea will be able to highlight and spot this issue if it arises. They’ll also be uniquely positioned to look at each candidate with an unemotional approach, to ensure fair, representative hiring processes at all times. 

Hear What Your Interview Team Has to Say With HireHive

It takes an entire team to make great recruitment decisions. By building the best interview team possible, you can simplify your decisions, introduce the right people at every stage, and produce fair, rounded feedback. 

Unfortunately, the more people you bring on board, the more complicated it can become to keep your thoughts about each candidate in check. Make that task easier with the help of HireHive. As well as simplifying the sharing of complete candidate profiles with the right people, HireHive is a one-stop platform for post-interview feedback and scorecards from all team members. With HireHive, you can all stay on the same page, and revisit everyone’s favourite candidates at the click of a button. 

Simply start your free trial of HireHive, and enjoy simpler team interviews today.

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“HireHive makes the team a lot more productive. We’d be lost without it. Team Leaders can do it all themselves if needed or jump in at the right time and know exactly where everything is and what’s happening.”

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Hilary Dempsey Head of HR at Life Credit union

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