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Halliday Marx Visions

HM Visions aims to provide you with all the latest accounting recruitment news, jobs and careers advice

Trust is fundamental in ensuring successful outcomes with any new hire – it should act as the foundation upon which all other qualities and qualifications rest.

Understanding what to look out for, along with planning and structuring your interview intelligently, will go a long way in ensuring you give yourself the best chance of fully understanding a candidate’s personality traits. To help get you started, we’ve put together some of our top tips:

Pay attention to non-verbal cues

Body language and movement can be good indicators in determining if a candidate is genuine, so make sure you pay attention to how they physically respond to questions that might provide insight into their trustworthiness:

Eye contact: Not only does this suggest that the interviewee is confident and engaged, it is also a good indication that they are being honest.

Open Hands: Open palms often indicate that a person is being honest and open when talking – look out for this behaviour the next time you watch a blue-chip CEO give an address to a large audience.

Fidgeting: If a fairly relaxed candidate starts to fidget, this could signal that they are uncomfortable answering your question and may not be providing you with the full picture.

Whilst technology has served us immensely well, face to face interviews will always provide a superior setting for accurately assessing a candidate’s personality. All gestures communicate something; a confident handshake, an open or relaxed posture, the way a person approaches you as the interview is initiated – all useful cues that will help decode how a person is thinking and feeling about a situation.

That said, it is important not to put all your emphasis on these signs alone. Many people are simply nervous during interviews, not everyone is a natural extrovert. You don’t want to miss out on a great candidate just because their nerves got the better of them.

Choose your recruitment partner carefully

Halliday Marx know their candidates extremely well. Prior to placing any talent for interview, we will have completed a great deal of groundwork to ensure we are confident they can join our portfolio of  high-quality finance professionals. In addition, it is extremely rare for us to take on a candidate without meeting them first. This is why it is fundamental you select an experienced, specialist, search and recruit consultancy to support you. This is the only way to ensure the majority of the hard work required to identify trustworthy talent has already been completed before you even receive a CV for consideration.

In addition, you may like the extra reassurance of following up with referees to confirm the truth value of interviewee statements – and we encourage you to do so. However, always make sure your follow-up process is both value-add and efficient. Top talent will get snapped-up quickly and exceptional candidates will have more than one opportunity open to them. You do not have the option of contacting various referees and waiting several weeks for responses. In order to receive timely and accurate feedback, always ask succinct questions that can be validated later on. For example, if you ask the interviewee why they left their last position, and they tell you they simply decided it was time to move on, you can then validate this information with their former employer to ensure they’re telling the truth. If the reasons for leaving don’t align, you may have a genuine reason to feel concerned.

Ask questions around honesty

A well-structured and planned interview should contain questions regarding honesty. This will help you understand more about how the candidate deals with situations when their honesty and integrity are put to the test. This might involve asking a candidate about a time when they felt being honest and open would receive a negative response. It is also important to delve deeper into responses and understand why a candidate decided to make that decision. Incorporating how and why into your questions can really help:

  • Tell me about a time when you made a mistake at work? How did you manage the impact?
  • Tell me about a time when your integrity was challenged in the workplace. Why do you think you reacted in that way?

Interviewing effectively is a skill that comes with experience. If you’re struggling, our specialist consultants can help. We regularly support our clients in structuring their interviews to ensure they not only gain maximum insight into a candidate’s ability, but they also have the best possible opportunity to assess their integrity and behaviour.

Keep it relevant

Interview questions should not only focus on past experience. To understand how talent will behave in your company, it can be valuable to reserve some questions that focus on how the potential hire will behave in your role.

For example, if you are particularly concerned with how someone will manage working with a global team, ask them directly:

  • How do you feel about not having regular face-to-face contact with some of your colleagues?
  • What would be your strategy for building trusted relationships with our global/remote colleagues?

In summary

Trust is fundamental in ensuring the success of any new hire. To give yourself the best chance of assessing a candidate’s integrity, a face-to-face setting will always provide an advantage over video/telephone interviews. You are also more likely to win the candidate you really want – connecting candidates with clients is a two-way street, so interviewing in person is an opportunity to show that you are a trustworthy manager and organisation.

Paying close attention to body language, having well thought out, structured interview questions and partnering with a seasoned, specialist search and recruitment company, like Halliday Marx, will mean you are best placed to hire candidates who not only possess the right skills and qualifications for your company – but you can also feel reassured your candidate is trustworthy.

If you need support with your recruitment needs, contact our specialist team today on 020 7096 8200 or email us at [email protected]

For the latest financial opportunities, company updates, recruitment information and career advice, follow us on LinkedIn and twitter@HallidayMarx

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