The process should be structured and address the competencies in the job description and person specification.
Questions should be behavioural and, where possible, focus on what applicants have done, not just on what they might do. Past behaviour is often the best indicator of future behaviour.
Where appropriate for the post, interviewers should follow up applicants' responses to questions and probe critical areas such as attitudes to punishment, conflict, sexuality, management of sexualised behaviour, as well as the influence of their own experience (e.g. of being parented or of parenting) on approach to vulnerable people.
Although it is possible for interviews to be conducted by a single person it is not recommended. It is better to have a minimum of two interviewers.
The panel members should:
- have the necessary authority to make decisions about appointment
- be appropriately trained including for example, interviewing skills, relevant legislation including the requirements of the Data Protection Act and the Equalities Act.
In advance of the interviews panel members should:
- reach a consensus about the required standard for the post
- consider the issues to be explored with each applicants and who will ask about these
- agree the assessment criteria in accordance with the person specification and agree how a record of the assessment will be taken (link here to policy section on online resource).
Links to further guidance and practice examples
Skills for Care- Values based recruitment and retention guide
National Care Standards
Practice example 1 Interview observer record 1
Practice example 2 Interview observer record 2
Practice example 3 Interview questions (care for adults)
Practice example 4 Interview questions
Practice example 5 Interview record 1
Practice example 6 Interview record 2
Practice example 7 Panel interview
- Provide the correct training to interviewers
- Be prepared for all interviews by following the same structure
- Questions should be competency/values based.
- Have a set of role specific questions available for each role
- Explore the applicant’s learning from previous experiences, lessons learned and areas for development
The interview provides applicants with the opportunity to explain/disclose any information.
If an applicant discloses that they are subject to SSSC investigation or employer disciplinary enquiries or investigation, you should be prepared to explore the issues; consider this in your recruitment policy ( **link here to policy section for online version).
Think about how to introduce discussions to explore applicants’ values. You may wish to ask candidates to discuss their experience of being parented or growing up. Some employers raise issues by referring to current events such as “I read about this matter in the newspaper - what do you think about that?”.