An insight into what recruiters look for in a candidate, why candidates fail to clear the interview, the importance of soft skills and more.
What mistakes do candidates generally make during interviews?
One must try and put his/ her best foot forward for the interview. Very often, candidates fail to clear the interviews due to inaccurate or incorrect information given in their resumes. Interview panel focuses on key traits and behaviour, which a candidate must demonstrate to succeed in the position being interviewed for. Sometimes, candidates end up discussing about areas in which they have little knowledge and experience. Too much of self-talk can also be seen as a negative attribute if the role needs a good team player. This shows them in bad light.
It’s always better to start with areas of your strength, show a positive approach and accept wherever you are unsure of the right answer. Interviewers do not expect candidates to answer every question; they also assess the forthrightness, professional behaviour, team work and work ethics of the candidate. One should avoid bad mouthing previous employer or talk negative about previous work experiences.
Often candidates start discussing compensation and benefit related aspects even before the final offer has been made. These questions should be taken up only when asked about or when the final round of interview is conducted. One must keep his answers succinct, focused to the subject in discussion to avoid any long rambling conversations.
Do you expect the candidates to have a fair idea about the company and the position they are applying for?
It’s always better to know the background of the company where you have applied for and understand the job profile as well. This shows the seriousness of the candidate for the interview. It also demonstrates that it’s a planned career move to align long term career goals with the organisations future strategy.
How important are soft skills (team work, communication, leadership etc.) in selecting a candidate?
Soft skills are very critical for individual success in any role. Interviewers focus on assessing the team work, group behaviour and leadership ability of individual through various case studies, questions on past experiences and also seek examples where the candidate has displayed these key attributes to successfully accomplish the goals.
To perform a role successfully, one must display fair understanding of behavioural aspects and good communication skill. As one moves up in career ladder, soft skills become critical differentiator to perform senior manager and leadership roles.
How important are the background/reference checks? Do you hire people without these checks?
Background check and reference check is mandatory in most organisations today. This is a non-negotiation aspect of hiring today. NASSCOM, which is the trade association of all the IT / ITeS / BPO companies in India has taken up a significant initiative called “Trusted Sourcing”. This initiative aims to develop and project the industry as a safe and trusted destination for sourcing, development, outsourcing and process work so that overseas clients develop confidence with the safety of our industry and assign more work.
NASSCOM, has developed a robust information infrastructure about all present and prospective employees of the industry called “National Skills Registry (NSR)”. NSR facilitates development of fact sheet of credible, permanent and accessible information about each registered person. You can refer to the link for more details on NSR. This clearly explains how important background check is in today's times.