Answering an applicant’s difficult questions and observing questionable behavior during an interview
It is reasonable to expect the applicant to ask questions during their interview. It gives them a chance to evaluate the opportunity for themselves. The following questions have answers provided in order to prepare you for a simple and appropriate response:
Q: “What is the starting wage/salary for this job?”
A: “The pay scale for this position is _____ per hour/year. However, we take into consideration your current experience to ensure you will be fairly compensated within our guidelines. We can discuss the total compensation package further if we come to the point of making an employment offer.”
Q: “When can I start?”
A: “Our organization always strives to hire outstanding individuals for any position that may be open. Therefore, there are many steps to the employment process. There are other applicants under consideration, but we will contact you if we move to the next step in the hiring process.
Q: “What benefits are available to me?”
A: “Our organization offers a number of benefits for our employees. I will be happy to review them before you leave today.”
If you don’t know the answer to an applicant’s question, tell them you will inquire about their question and follow-up with them with the appropriate answer.
Another aspect to watch for during the interview is the applicant’s verbal and non-verbal behaviors. Look for the following behaviors during your next interview.
- Questionable verbal behaviors – responds with answers that may be “too good to be true”; responds in a rehearsed manner; discusses accomplishments using “we” instead of “I”; gives explanations that seem vague; rates themselves overly high to cover performance weaknesses; is unable to provide specific examples to support information on the application.
- Questionable non-verbal behaviors – has unusually long pauses between questions; easily blushes; suddenly perspires; clenches teeth or fists; avoids eye contact; suddenly speaks rapidly; loses professional demeanor.
If a candidate displays some of these behaviors during an interview, it may be a red flag that this candidate is not the best option for this position.
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