Are you asking the right interview questions?

There are two types of questions that matter in the interview process: verification questions about the candidate’s credentials and fit questions. You need to ask the ‘box-checkers’ to ensure the person is whom they say they are, but along with reference checks, this is mostly a due diligence activity.

They are usually best asked in an initial interview or phone screening call. The fit questions are where you get the essential information. Who is this applicant? Also, how well would they fit with your team?

You must remember that just like in dating, the hiring process should also be about finding matches for both your company and the candidate. When you’re motivated by wanting to find successful team members, you need to ensure the conversation allows for both the hiring manager and the applicant to put their cards on the table. Expectations and cultural fit are crucial for understanding how well an employee will enjoy their work, and how well their teammates will work well with them.

Hiring for culture fit

Cultural fit has its controversy, especially when it’s framed as hiring only people like you. That’s where people can get it wrong. Cultural fit is really about matching people and organizations with similar goals, aspirations, and values. It’s about people who get up in the morning and are personally bought into the values by which you run your company. Cultural fit isn’t about whether you and your teammates have the same mannerisms, interests, or come from similar backgrounds. It’s having a diverse set of personalities and perspectives that bring together cool people to do cool things, like generating fresh ideas to keep your company moving forward.The key to building a strong and capable team is to ensure that values and mindsets are complementary, not conflicting.

Similar read: Brand building from the inside out

Because the real golden nuggets in a candidate’s information don’t necessarily come through in their professional resume (some of the best applicants don’t have the best resume, unfortunately), there needs to be a better way to get a sense of fit before the applicant is screened out. When looking through applications, hiring managers don’t want to spend time with guesswork. They’re trying to determine if the candidate ‘crop-dusted’ their resume or if they really want to work for them. 

Great pre-screen interview questions from Alongside customers 

Using Alongside enables you to ask interesting, important questions to applicants as they apply. Our Ask a Question feature allows you to probe to see more of the person than their prepared cover letter and resume. Getting an applicant to do a little more ‘work’ in their application is not a bad thing. It can reveal their intent and provide a more authentic glimpse into who they are. Some of the best questions we’ve seen employers use on Alongside have been:

  • What one line summarizes what you bring to the table?
  • What kind of design projects interest you the most?
  • What is the single greatest strength you would bring to this position?
  • What is the most important thing for you in the next company you work for?
  • Tell us about something impressive you do that is unrelated to the gaming industry.
  • How would you describe your ‘dream job’?
  • What intrigues you about this role?  How do you see it fitting into your long-term career plan?
  • When you work hard and perform your job exceptionally well, what does your employer owe you?

Use these answers (in combination with the box checkers) to determine who to bring in for an interview. If you’re looking for some great questions to ask at the interview stage, I recommend you check out the toolkit I put together. It will help you be a hiring superstar.

Want more great questions? Get our Interview Toolkit for Hiring Sales Reps! It may be written for hiring sales representatives, but we promise it’s got some wicked good questions and a scorecard!