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A model to predict the outcome of a job interview

A model to predict the outcome of a job interview.

Career professionals, once offered an appointment for a job interview, want to know the probability that they will be offered the advertised position.

The ability to predict the outcome of a job interview can help a candidate decide whether or not to attend the job interview, or more importantly, allows the applicant to reflect on what aspects of the job interview need improvement to increase job openings for positions that they have the related skills, competencies and confidences for.

The interviewer makes hiring decisions based on logic – the analytical process of a job interview is designed to predict future job performance.

Decision making, however, is a two-system process. Partly logical – a slower and emotional analytical process – quick judgments based on stereotypes and prejudices.

Therefore, an employee applying for the same position, within the same organizations, giving the same level of detailed response to the same set of job interview questions, may receive varying scores if interviewed by two different hiring managers. .

There is a two-step process for forming opinions of an applicant in a job interview;

  • Unconscious biases

  • Identity of the interview

Job interview biases.

An initial impression of an applicant is created once the interviewee introduces himself to the employer. The impression is emotional, a hunch, where unconscious stereotypes and prejudices affect the formation of the interviewer’s perception.

Many diverse stimuli trigger an unconscious bias, some favor the applicant, while others create a negative opinion. Research has shown how an applicant’s weight, ethnicity, age, religion, attractiveness, or background can be unconsciously used to form an opinion of the interviewee.

Having points in common can increase the liking between the employer and the applicant, increasing the potential score of the job interview questions (affinity basis) and reciprocal liking, liking someone more because they like you, it also creates a good relationship .

Being seen as ‘attractive’ improves the hiring manager’s opinion of applicants, even increasing the level of trust they have in the applicant.

And hearing how an applicant is a strong candidate, for an internal promotion interview, can seed the idea of ​​the suitability of said applicant by creating the ‘halo effect’.

The association is a powerful bias. The religious bias investigation uncovered how an applicant who changed his name from ‘Mohammed’ to ‘Mo’ increased the number of interview offers he received. And age, race and gender are well documented to raise or lower each applicant’s opinion for the advertised position they are applying for.

An example of this is how women applying for traditionally male positions are seen as less suitable than a male applicant.

The power of the subconscious in a job interview.

This initial opinion is not a conscious thought. The employer, in many cases, is unaware of the unconscious bias that has come into play.

The interviewer, in the female example applying for a male job, is not sexist. In contrast, unconscious bias slightly affects how the applicant is rated throughout the job interview. Since many appointments are made for the difference of a few minor points between the selected candidate and the second-choice candidate, this set of points can make a difference.

Employer reactions to a stereotype.

Some people have an ‘isum’; sexist, ageist, racist and many other isos. We group these people as conscientious and they don’t care: if an applicant has a stimulus that the employer does not like, it would be difficult to change his initial opinion about the applicant even when evidence contradicting his belief has been presented.

Mindful and careful: This is when an unconscious bias becomes clear (the interviewer realizes that he likes and dislikes an applicant who is not based on logical reasoning). Being mindful, the interviewer may challenge himself (or being mindful may be enough to adjust how you rate the applicant). If, for example, a recruiter made a negative opinion of a candidate on the basis that the candidate is obsessive (a study was completed where applications were submitted with a photo of the candidate. Half were submitted with an image of an obsessive applicant and the other half with a picture of an “average” weight candidate. The experiment found that overweight applicants were less likely to get a job interview offer), they may ask if an applicant’s weight is important to the job in question . Or find examples of an overweight employee who is very successful in their field.

In some cases, the stimulus has no effect on the interviewer’s decision-making process. Stereotypes and prejudices are formed through the experiences and beliefs and culture of the place where a person has grown up. If, for example, an employer grew up in a household where men and women were seen as equals and gender was never questioned, it would be rare for the employer to be sexist: unaware and unaffected. (but the interviewer could be affected by a second bias)

The structured job interview.

The structured job interview has been designed to use an analytical process to help create a “fair” job interview process.

In a structured job interview, each applicant is asked the same interview questions based on the criteria of the advertised job position. Guidance is provided to each interviewer on how to rate each interview question based on the applicants’ perceived level of competencies using a numerical rating system.

It is during the initial interview responses that applicants can help change employers’ perception of them. If, for example, the applicant’s dress style, body language, and communication styles have created an impression of “unprofessional”, the applicant has a short window to override this initial impression.

For a ‘mindful and don’t care’ employer, changing a deeply held belief can be very difficult.

Analyzing people is difficult and stressful. That is why the mind adopts by default schemes, stereotypes and past prejudices, to facilitate the decision-making process.

Initially, the employer, at the beginning of the job interview, will consciously analyze the candidate’s verbal and non-verbal communication to guess the suitability of the interviewee based on their perceived level of knowledge / experience and confidence.

Within the first 2 interview questions, the data (opinion) received will create a new interview identity, which becomes the filter for all upcoming job interview responses. This is similar to the process behind the ‘affinity bias’ that an association has made that changes the way the applicant is scored in the job interview.

Identity of the interview

It is the applicant’s perceived level of industry knowledge and industry experience versus their confidence level in the interview, when combined, that forms the ‘interview identity’. This has little to do with how well an employee performs in the actual workplace; Since this cannot be observed in a job interview, it is therefore how the interview performance of applicants is measured compared to the requirements for the advertised job position.

Interview Prediction Test:

To verify the identity of your job interview, how an employer sees it, read the 4 statements under each caption and choose the one that most closely resembles you.

LEVEL OF KNOWLEDGE / EXPERIENCE

Specialized knowledge / experience

4 points: more than 10 years of experience in the sector; able to leverage industry-related academic research that contributes to the field

3 points: 3-10 years of experience in the sector; experienced in implementing proven theories and models in everyday business

2 points – 1-3 years of relevant experience; academic level of industry knowledge with no experience applying concepts to day-to-day tasks

1 point: inexperienced; possesses soft skills; communication, teamwork, problem solving

Academic ability

4 points – Master’s Degree – PhD / Postgraduate Degree (Level 7-8) Professional Industry Qualification (for example, a Chartered Engineer)

3 points: grade level qualification up to bachelor’s degree (level 6)

2 points – Graduate – up to Higher National Diploma (Level 4-5)

1 point: GCSE / A-Level (level 2-3) or lower

Read the following 4 statements under each caption and choose the one that most closely resembles you. Add both points and for an odd number, the result is rounded to the nearest even number.

CONFIDENCE LEVEL

Esteem

4 points – A self-promoter fully aware of his experience. It demands to be treated with authority and respect, and will challenge anyone who has conflicting opinions.

3 points: Believe in your ability, recognize your own skill set, and will discuss your strengths when asked.

2 points: aware of both strengths and development areas, but can easily reveal weaknesses and mistakes without being asked by others

1 point: you have a negative view of your abilities and lack self-esteem

Communication style

4 points: attract attention and dominate the meetings. Complex ideas are explained clearly and competently by combining statistics with examples. Able to influence others to take a new point of view, using logic and reasoning to overcome barriers to objections.

3 points: Speak with authority, present ideas within structure, and use vocal variety to maintain interest. Able to debate a technical issue, arguing points clearly while expressing your own ideas.

2 points: You can discuss a familiar topic when asked, but find it difficult to answer when challenged. You feel tense when explaining new concepts, however, with comfortable topics you speak clearly and vary the tone / volume.

1 point: you feel nervous when you are the center of attention. Communication is weak due to hesitation, excess filler words, low volume, and short, quick sentences.

Now you will own two figures; one indicates your level of knowledge / experience and the second, your level of confidence. Your combined score indicates your identity in the interview.

Once an interview identity has been chosen, a description is provided that explains how an employer views this interview identity, and its strengths and areas of development.

For a complete overview of your interview identity, click on the Interview Prediction Grid.

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