Lack of preparation is a mistake that many hiring managers make when they are in the process of trying to fill a job opening.

I think that is because the interview process is a deceptively simple process on the surface. But, if you had the experience of falling into the same cycle of hiring employees who are not as experienced or dedicated as you thought they might be when you interviewed them for the job, you may understand what I mean.

It is really important to take a little time to really assess the job that you are hiring for and to think about the type of experience you will need in order for your employee to be successful.

Now let us walk through the interview preparation process step by step.

Step 1

Prepare the job description or job summary prior to searching for your candidates

This is when you take a few minutes to make a list of the work that needs to be done, the work experience needed, and the skills and education that your new employee will need in order to be successful. Do not neglect soft skills such as initiative and follow through or the ability to work independently.

Step 2

Ask meaningful interview questions

You will want to develop the types of questions that will allow you to get a real sense of your candidate's actual experience. Ask the candidate to provide work-related examples that support any statement that they share with you during the interview relative to the skills and experience. Now this type of questioning is called behavioral interview questioning.

It is important to know that you should avoid asking questions that allow the candidate to respond by saying either "Yes" or "No". Unless, a "Yes" or "No" is the answer you really want.

Step 3

Check references

You should always check applicants' references before hiring. This is a good opportunity for you to verify statements made by the applicants specific to their work experience as well as obtain more information on the candidates' overall job performance.

Do not forget to ask if there were any performance issues or if there are areas where the employee needs to grow or improve relative to their experience.

Now let me jump a bit ahead of the cart. Remember to orient your new employee. Once you have hired your new employee, it is really important to make sure that that new staff member understands what is expected of him or her. Take the time to review the job, the layout of the company, your job expectations, introduce them to other members of the team, and really get them comfortable in your organization.

And always remember, a little time spent preparing for the process of finding and hiring your employees can save you time, money and needless frustration.