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Recruitment trends: 5 ways to tap into value-based interviewing

What's value-based recruitment and how do you use this technique to find the right staff?
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Businesses across the UK have started incorporating value-based interviewing (VBI) into their recruitment processes. But what does this recruitment trend actually entail, and is it right for every business?

In organisations where client, customer or patient care is critical to success, value-based interviewing can be a great way to gain insight into the way people think or may make decisions.

Over the last few years, both public and commercial organisations, such as the NHS and Nissan, have invested in value-based methods of recruitment to find the right staff. According to Robert Scott, managing director at Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment, value-based interviewing matches up talent to organisational values right at the hiring stage.

“Value-based interviewing techniques can be a great way to ensure that the people you bring into your organisation will fit your business model and make the day-to-day decisions which will keep your operations effective and successful,” says Scott.

Here’s how it works and how to get started.

Identify the right situation to use value-based interviewing

Some roles or sectors may require employees with a stricter set of values than other organisations. For example, workers in the healthcare industry may be expected to have a clearer set of ethics than the more commercial organisations, but similarly, employees working in HR or data protection would be better suited with values of integrity and honesty.

Use value-based interviewing in these situations to find staff who will fit both role and organisation.

Consider the values right for your organisation

Before interviewing, it’s important to consider the values that you need from your staff for them to reach their potential and perform well in your company or organization. Make a list of the values of your top performers in similar or parallel roles and use these to inform what you’re looking for from your next employee.

Break down this list of values into ‘must-haves’ and ‘nice-to-haves’, which will help inform the evaluation process and your final decision between candidates.

Write interview questions with these values in mind

After creating your list of ‘must-have’ values for the role, structure the interview questions by trying to assess whether a candidate has the ethics you’re looking for. For example, if you’re looking for an employee with the value of determination, you could ask the interviewee: “Tell us about a mistake you’ve made? What did you do about it and what was the end result?”

Have a different question in mind for each of your ‘must-have’ values to really get a sense of how a candidate would perform in your organisation.

Use follow-up questions to delve deeper

Clever candidates can be coy in saying exactly what they think an employer will want to hear. In the case of a healthcare organisation, candidates could talk in great detail for their passion for caring for people, without providing any real examples of how they deal with real-life situations. It’s your role as the interviewer to probe deeper with follow-up questions that explore a candidate’s real background and values.

Be careful what you ask

When designing questions, ensure that they don’t cross an ethical line. With recent discriminatory legislation coming into the workplace, it can be easy to trip-up on questions which may initially appear innocent. Questions around age, nationality, marital or family status may seem like question ‘openers’ or friendly discussion, but can often cross the line and more often than not it’s not your place as an employer to ask these type of questions.

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About Author

Praseeda Nair

Praseeda Nair is the editorial director of Real Business, and its sister publication for micro businesses, Business Advice. She's an impassioned advocate for women in leadership, and likes to write about management strategies, entrepreneurs, growth companies, and diversity and inclusion.

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