Importance of Personal Interview in a Selection Process

Importance of Personal Interview in a Selection Process

The importance of a personal interview in hiring the right candidate cannot be underestimated. This is a crucial stage that cannot be left out in the hiring process. Personal interviews have tremendous benefits both to the employer and the job candidate. It helps employers to select the appropriate candidates while it helps job seekers to market their skills to the organization. There are many ways to hire the appropriate candidate for the job but the role a personal interview plays stands essential. This article will explore the importance of personal interviews.


What is a Personal Interview?

A personal interview is an organized meeting organized by an interviewer or job recruiter in which a potential candidate is analyzed for a job position or employment. This meeting is usually a face-to-face meeting or a two-way process between the candidate and the job recruiter.

Examples of questions asked in a personal interview

  1. Tell me about yourself?
  2. What are the areas of your strengths and weaknesses?
  3. Why did you quit your previous job?
  4. What are your salary expectations?
  5. Do you love independent research?
  6. Can you work under stress or in tense situations
  7. If you were an animal, which one will you be?
  8. Where do you see yourself in the next five years?
  9. Do you enjoy teamwork or do you prefer working alone?
  10. Describe yourself in three or five words?


Importance of Personal Interview in a Selection Process in the following ways:

Gathering of Information

A personal interview helps you to gather first-hand information about the job candidate. This information can be the candidate’s educational qualifications, skills, experience, and expertise. Candidates that are pre-screened through personal interviews can hardly tell lies because of the eye-to-eye contact they maintain with the interviewer. The information you gather about the candidate can help you decide if the candidate is competent for the job or not.

The Intelligent Quotient of the Candidate

The interviewer can access the candidate’s intelligent quotient by asking the candidate critical questions. This will make the candidate brainstorm and come up with an analytical response. Job recruiters can ask the candidate’s the most difficult interview questions which will require candidates to rack their brains to come up with answers. The candidate that answers these questions correctly will be the most eligible candidate for the job.  For instance, you can ask the candidate this question: “if you were an animal, which one will you be”. You can also ask questions about how the job candidate handled a difficult situation in the past.

Personality Type

Personal Interviews help the employer to evaluate the attitude of the job candidate. A highly sensitive interviewer will be able to determine the character of the candidate and how he can fit into the company’s social culture; how the job candidate will relate with other coworkers. For instance, a job candidate that arrives late for the interview is already passing a message to the interviewer, and also a job candidate that shows he knows better than the interviewer is already passing a message. An interviewer can evaluate a candidate’s social behavior, dress, and mannerisms through a personal interview. The personality of the candidate is very crucial because no employer wants arrogant, lazy, and undisciplined employees in a work environment.

Communication Skills

A job candidate’s communication skills can be judged during a personal interview. A smart job recruiter observes a job candidate sternly during a personal interview session. The interviewer maintains eye contact with the job candidate to determine his level of honesty and comfort. The interviewer also checks how the candidate answers questions and the body language of the job candidate. Communication skill is a sought-after skill required in most job positions especially positions like marketers, sales agents, and customer service of an organization. The way the candidate answers question will ascertain whether he possesses communication skills or not.

The Job Candidate’s Interest

This is very crucial, some employees tend to lose interest in working for a particular organization over time and this can hamper the productivity of the company. A job candidate’s area of interest can be evaluated through a personal interview and the employers will know exactly what to do. Ask for the job candidate’s area of interest and his position. This will help you to recruit an employee that has vigor and motivation for his job. For instance, a job candidate that has a passion for graphic artistry or design should be employed in that area. As an interviewer, knowing a job candidate’s interest is very crucial because it will help you to recruit passionate employees. This will reduce the rate of job dissatisfaction.

Development of a Relationship with Job Candidate

Personal interviews are wonderful interactive sessions that help the interviewer and job candidates to bond with one another. A personal interview is the first step of meeting one on one with a job candidate a  then collaborating on selected ones. In a personal interview, job recruiters are not the only ones that question; job candidates can also ask questions about the company. In addition, job candidates can also negotiate about the salary and this brings about a free flow of communication.

The Professionalism of the Job Candidate

This starts from the appearance of the job candidate that is if the job candidate appears professionally or not. For instance, a job candidate that dresses very casually for an interview is not a professional prospective employee. Employers want professional employees to work in their organization and a personal interview helps to assess a job candidate’s level of professionalism. The way the job candidate talks, acts, and manner of doing things will determine if he will be a professional employee or not. Another way to evaluate the job candidate’s professionalism is by the level of confidence the job candidate exhibit; a timid job candidate is not professional enough for the job. A smart employer looks out for: professional attire, professional grooming, professional attitude, and professional presentation of the job candidate.


In a nutshell, a personal interview plays an indispensable role in the selection of the right job candidate; the benefits of a personal interview are overwhelming. Every interviewer want’s to recruit a competent job candidate who cannot bypass personal interviews. Personal interviews are not just for big organizations; little firms too can conduct personal interviews when hiring a job seeker. Personal interviews help job recruiters to evaluate the analytical, communication, attitude, and presentation skills of job candidates.

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