Ask Kathy: Recruiting Ideal Agents

By Kathy Sisk

There are seven steps to effective recruiting. They are:

  • Phase 1: Résumé Screening
  • Phase 2: First Telephone Interview
  • Phase 3: Second Telephone Interview
  • Phase 4: In-Person Interview
  • Phase 5: Reference Checking
  • Phase 6: Security Clearance
  • Phase 7: Acceptance Letter

The resume screening should be handled by your human resources department; they can determine if the candidate qualifies on paper. However, the second and third phases are most critical, and this is what we will focus on here.

For phase 2, use a team leader or an assistant trainer; they can assess if the candidate speaks well and answers questions correctly. Plus they can better discern if the candidate is ideal for the position. In this first interview, have a form ready with simple questions they will ask the candidate, such as:

“What are some of your strengths?”

“Everyone has weaknesses – what are some of yours?”

“What are some of your highest accomplishments?”

“In the career path you have chosen, what is the greatest amount of experience you have?”

Additionally, ask about the candidate’s education, other activities, and income requirements. The résumé should state this, but you want to hear how he or she verbally responds and presents himself or herself. If the candidate passes this phase, move on to the next.

In Phase 3, use a supervisor or head trainer. These questions are more progressive, such as:

“Describe your experience in sales and customer service.”

“Why are you leaving your present job?”

“Why do you want this job?”

“Why do you feel qualified for this position?”

“What motivated you to respond to our ad?”

“How familiar are you with us and the services we offer?”

This last question tells you if the candidate has done his or her homework and is serious about the position.

Have the supervisor rate the interview with a 1, 2, or 3 in the following areas: voice, communication, speed, rhythm, descriptive, enunciation, usage of language, volume, rhythm, listening skills, modulation, logical, persuasive, focus, professional, self-image, and enthusiasm. Also, always consider the interviewer’s comments.

Incorporating these suggestions into your interview process will help you find ideal candidates and minimize hiring mistakes.

Kathy Sisk is founder and president of Kathy Sisk Enterprises Inc., located in California. Kathy is a trainer and consultant, contributing thirty-five years of expertise to the telemarketing, sales, and customer service industries. She is a published author with many manuals and books, including Overcoming Objections and Successful Telemarketing.

[From Connection Magazine Jan/Feb 2014]