Interview Techniques in a Hybrid Workplace by GCR

In the post-pandemic marketplace, interviewing candidates will likely look different than ever before. Read on to learn more about conducting interviews in a hybrid jobs model.

The 2020 coronavirus pandemic forced a significant shift in the modern workplace. As businesses sent their employees home to adhere to social distancing guidelines, companies of all sizes and across industries were forced to adapt to a new work-from-home (WFH) model.

One surprising outcome of the pandemic’s impact on the marketplace was the benefits that both employees and SME employers discovered in WFH environments. Not only could companies enjoy a lower cost in overhead without teams on-site, but the increased benefits of a flexible working environment boosted productivity and morale. Plus, the ability to work from anywhere has led to companies expanding their reach for qualified candidates.

If you are a mid to senior-level recruitment manager, you may be wondering how to adapt your interviewing techniques for the new job field. As potential candidates prefer to increase their flexibility, interviewing with the concept of working both in and out of the office may be necessary.

Let’s break down the top techniques for interviewing hybrid employee candidates with these hybrid interview coaching tips:

1. Focus Your Energy on Soft-Skill Questions

With the move toward work-from-anywhere culture, it is important that your interviews focus more on soft-skills subjects. While there was a time when you would ask candidates about their location, distance from the office, and potential benefits that they would need to join, today’s hybrid workers will respond differently.

Consider asking questions such as:

  • How do you motivate yourself to complete your day-to-day tasks?
  • What do you think about working remotely and alone?
  • What benefits could we provide to help boost your productivity and personal health?
  • Will you struggle without inter-office social interactions? How can we help boost that aspect for you?

2. Showcase Your Culture Through Your Interview

While you may have conducted initial interviews over video calls or phone calls, today’s culture may see the entire interview process occur over video. How can a hiring manager navigate an interview over video?

To help boost the chance that you land a high-quality candidate, consider treating a video interview similar to any other video call with regular employees.

  • What culture does your hybrid team culture have when communicating over video conferences?
  • How do you break the ice and catch up with one another?
  • What expectations do you hold for any calls that are held over video?
  • How do you navigate “being on-call” or “office hours” when operating as a hybrid team?

Landing on these aspects in the initial interview and hiring process will help you find the best candidate for a hybrid role.

3. Show That You Care About Them

While communicating with a candidate about the potential role is essential, it may be even more critical for them to feel that they are being hired rather than a faceless person behind a screen.

As you build your interview questions, consider delving into their hobbies and background. Ask them pointed questions about their:

  • Personal goals
  • Virtues
  • Principles
  • Family & Expectations
  • Life Ambitions Outside of Work

Show that your company hires and cares for people, not just workers.

4. Land On Hybrid Expectations

Make sure you ask questions that will help them understand your workplace expectations. Consider asking potential hybrid employees:

  • Who do you live with, and what support do they offer you in your career?
  • Do you find your home to be noisy or quiet during working hours?
  • Do you ever work remotely from another place other than your home?
  • What techniques do you use to ensure you are on task when working remotely?
  • What kind of support would you expect from your employer for helping you complete your work remotely?

Shape your interview techniques to help a candidate feel good about the opportunity. Make sure that your interview techniques exist to bring the best out of a candidate, helping them feel encouraged and comfortable with the potential opportunity.

4. Be Open & Inviting

Hybrid interviews can bring an unexpected sense of formality and coldness. This is a terrible way to start an employee relationship and not the culture you want to build with your teams.

When interviewing a potential hybrid employee, stay professional but feel free to lean into the casual or informal. Find ways to talk openly about the job and culture and allow the candidate to ask questions about the workplace and culture.

Adapt Your Interview Process & Land The Perfect Candidate

It can be easy to feel caught up in the changes that are coming with hybrid workplace environments. However, it is essential to remember that this new normal offers a variety of benefits for companies. Even those who may find that they move toward an all-remote staff can grow and scale with success. Remember – good recruitment means loyal employees.

Taking the time to invest in interview techniques that offer the best candidate experience will increase the chance that they will accept your offer to join the team. Keep your interview process aligned with your company ethos – even as times change – and you will help your company move forward into the future boldly.