With technology making recruitment easier than ever, there’s often no need for hiring managers to conduct face-to-face interviews. Instead, automated hiring eliminates the hours of legwork required by traditional recruiting, cutting the hiring process from weeks or even months to just a few days. Moreover, it tests current skill set and ultimately yields stronger candidates to fill each open position. However, this highly effective process cannot take place without one critical ingredient: a winning interview script.

To isolate the best candidate from the applicant pool, you need design an expert interview script that focuses on the tasks you expect your new hire to do on the job. If you’re looking to channel your expertise into an interview script, here are some formatting tips you should keep in mind.

Ease Into It

A situation as formal as a job interview often leaves the interviewee more than a little nervous. After all, their very reason for being there means they’re being evaluated on everything they say and do. So in-person interviews often opt to undercut this tension with some small talk, easing candidates into the headier questions.

When it comes to remote interviews such as those that would use your interview script, this tactic is actually heightened. Be sure to take a lighter tone upfront to help make the applicant as comfortable as possible. Open up with some softball questions, and don’t include time limits with any of them just yet. This will help build confidence in your interviewee. In addition, it’s not a bad idea to include a brief introductory message at the top of the interview, as this can help boost engagement and set a more relaxed tone for the subsequent questions.

Testing 101

Once you’ve passed the getting-to-know-you, lighter portion of the interview, it’s time to get to the good stuff. This is where you’ll break out your most substantive questions. Of course, the details here will vary greatly depending on your industry and the nature of the position itself. However, you may opts to include a wide range of assessments, including real-world scenario testing, quizzes and other demonstrations of the applicant’s skill set.

You may decide to include video in this section, but we caution you not to overuse it. Both video questions and those with time limits can become overwhelming for candidates quickly. While you want to challenge them, you certainly don’t want to turn them off entirely or discourage them from completing the interview. In any case, this middle section is the point in which it becomes clear whether or not this candidate possesses the ability to handle the position they’re purporting to earn.

Closing Time

After the assessment phase winds down, you need to tie all the previous points together in a solid conclusion. Reiterate the values and mission of the company, and do your best to make a lasting positive impression on applicants. Even if they ultimately do not earn the position (obviously, the vast majority will not), how you end the interview process could affect their overall thoughts of the company and may make them more likely to apply for another open position down the line.

Your closing segment should be imbued with a deep respect and appreciation for each candidate. Remember, the interview script you craft strongly reflects your company. Therefore, it’s imperative that you portray your company, your team and your prospective employees in the best way possible, especially since it will shape applicants’ thoughts immediately afterwards.

Interview Master

Though the above tips only highlight some of the most basic guidelines for putting together an interview script, we hope that we have been able to shed some light on how much strategy and forethought is necessary to create the interview script you need in order to land the best candidates. Whether you realize it or not, your experience and skills are an incredibly valuable tool, one that you can leverage within the ever-expanding interview script market.

With the foundations of formatting now covered, you can more confidently move forward into content. Unsurprisingly, the details of presentation and scope are perhaps the most integral points you must master to become a leading interview script writer in your field. The hardest part though is acquiring the background you need to tap into to thoughtfully formulate the right questions. Picking up the rest is simply a matter of time.

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