Shirley Mills

SELECTION (Shirley Mills)

Interview Process

The first thing for Sugar Street Sweets is to realize that we are in the need for new staff.  We then place ads as previously stated in the avenues that we use, mainly online, although we have looked at our local colleges and universities as well.

  For anyone that inquires about the positions, we begin the interview process. We do require that a potential interview candidate take an assessment test to ensure that we are only interviewing candidates that might be a possible good fit. A more detailed explanation of the test we use will be in the next portion of of our book titled Pre Employment Tests and Assessments.

Next, we conduct the interviews. For Sugar Sweet Sweets, we are focusing on conducting structured interviews. As defined by OPM.GOV, a structured interview is an “assessment method designed to measure job-related competencies of candidates by systematically inquiring about their behavior in past experiences and/or their proposed behavior in hypothetical situations.” The reason we are choosing to do structured interviews rather than unstructured is that for each of our positions available, we want to eliminate the chance of being biased.  Human Resource Selection, tells us that unstructured interviews can be seen as not very “useful” when selecting a candidate for a position. This is because when unstructured interviews are given, the interviewer can unknowingly be influenced by such things as “physical attractiveness, or the strength of a handshake, which may have very little to do with later job success. Where as, structured interviews rely on a very disciplined method for collecting job relevant information, including the use of the job analysis that identifies questions aimed at attitudes, behaviors, knowledge, and skills that differentiate high performers for a particular job”.  (Gatewood, 2011, p 445-446) Sugar Street Sweets is much more interested in if a candidate can do the job to the standards we are requiring. We will decide whether the candidate is an appropriate fit for our company and vice versa based on the answers each person gives along with the pre employment test results.

 Now, we are onto the portion of the interview where we have a social interaction session with each candidate.  Each position we are hiring for has a specific set of questions that relate to the direct position the candidate is applying for. The type of interview we are choose to do  is called The Behavior Description Interview.  This type of interview was “first described by Tom Janz” and “starts by generating critical incidents and identifying behavioral dimensions.” (Gatewood, 2011, p 451) Following this pattern, many of our interview questions ask our applicants to describe a specific time, place, or situation that he or she has personally experienced and how they reacted to resolve the situation. For example, “tell me of a time when you were faced with a difficult customer and what did you do to ensure excellent customer service?”  Per Gatewood, “the behavior description interview calls for a review of these behavioral dimensions as well as the identification of each dimension as essentially describing maximum or typical performance.  Maximum performance dimensions deal with technical skills and knowledge. Typical performance dimensions deal with getting along with others, working hard versus wasting time, and being organized, courteous and punctual.”  It is recommended that the most important thing to take away from this is that the “emphasis be placed solely on typical performance dimensions.”  In our view, we are more than willing to accept an applicant that might need  kitchen training, for example,  if  they demonstrate a strong work ethic. We can teach technical skills which will help the employee gain knowledge but trying to teach someone how to be a person that has a strong work ethic is another thing.          One thing that is common across the board is for most interviewees to come into an interview with a certain amount of expectations. (Gatewood, 2011, p 464)   Gatewood tells us that “interviewers and candidates bring to the interview their own expectations, beliefs, needs, and intentions with regard to the job, the interview, the organization, and each other. These are a product of the previous knowledge, training, education, and experience of the interviewer and the candidate.”  Because of this, our last  interview question is an open one for the applicant to voice any questions he or she might have. This is the perfect time for the candidate to ask any questions he or she might have as well. We feel it is just as important for the employee to feel as though the position we are offering is a good fit for him or her and want to address any questions or concerns that might be lingering.  As expected, we bring our own expectations to the table such as  1)we expect anyone we employ to be dependable,  2)punctual,  3)have good hygiene, 4)be willing to learn when the situation calls for it,  5)be able to work alone or in teams, 6)be honest, 7)enjoy helping others, and 8) be able to follow directions.  Although this is not a full, detailed list of what we expect, it does give the perspective candidate a good idea.         

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