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5 Ways to win over the candidate

Getting Trust

You certainly don’t do that by conducting mediocre job interviews. Candidates have a lot of choice in this labor market and are critical of the way they are treated during an application procedure. You can directly influence the following 5 components. Become the best discussion partner together with your hiring manager and gain the confidence of the candidate that switching to your employer is the most obvious career choice.


1. Show your worth!

Make yourself heard and share your expertise! Your hiring manager has the role of manager and you that of corporate recruiter. That difference can be seen and experienced. The job interview, and your presence as a corporate recruiter, is usually part of your recruitment service to the business. This gives you the space to use your expertise towards the manager and the candidate.

Influence the mindset of yourself and that of your manager by being concrete about achieving a common goal as a recruitment expert. Preparation is essential for optimal performance. You help your manager by coordinating the division of roles in advance. Become concrete together about what you think the applicant needs to appreciate you as ‘the best discussion partners’ in the series of applications after the interview.

2. Your hiring manager as ‘the best leader’ for your applicant

Motivate your hiring manager to give concrete examples of how team members have experienced personal development and internal growth under their responsibility.

The manager has the responsibility to ‘take care’ of the team as a whole and the individual. The manager’s success depends, among other things, on his or her leadership qualities and how they are used within the possibilities offered by the organization. A job interview is the time for the manager to investigate what the career needs are and what the applicant needs to realize this. The more concretely your hiring manager responds to this, the better. You listen, observe, ask in-depth questions and are a bridge builder when necessary.


3. Influence the openness and authenticity of your applicant

An applicant who feels welcome and is treated as a guest of the organization is more open and authentic during a job interview than an applicant who applies for a job at a company where hospitality is less important.

It is a possible conclusion, based on the assumption that atmosphere and hospitality can influence the quality of a conversation. It seems logical, what do you think? In my experience it is often the little things that have a major impact on the candidate’s state of mind.

Creating a good atmosphere starts before the applicant is greeted by the receptionist upon arrival. Because, is the candidate aware of who the discussion partners are? Is the route description correct to the correct location? Is the applicant’s name known to the receptionist? And don’t underestimate the impact of your ‘vibe’ while walking to the meeting room!

Valuable conversation

4. This is how you get the most out of your job interview

The applicant is considering making a future-oriented career choice. With your expertise to investigate potential, you can help your hiring manager and candidate to make a sustainable choice from everyone’s perspective. Of course you want the match to have a shelf life longer than a year. For this you use your talent to validate your interpersonal perception, intuition and feeling during the conversation. In addition to using any assessment tools, you have the real conversation to prevent assumptions and unfounded judgments from you and the hiring manager.

This phase of the conversation is part of a semi-structured interview. With this you give yourself the space to ask person-oriented open questions in a respectful manner, with which you can use the answers to check whether your perception, intuition and feeling are correct. To make everything transparent, you make incongruity negotiable and you are keen on identifying contradictory answers.

The logic levels of Bateson and Dilts[1] help you formulate valuable questions that provide access to real intentions. The goal: conducting a valuable conversation, collecting answers and insights that reveal the potential and intention of your candidate, so that you can match it with the opportunities and possibilities within your organization.

Predictive selection tools

5. Start using the most valid selection tools

Your focus on increasing the predictive validity[2] of the interview adds the most value. Particularly when it comes to providing insight into skills and competencies in relation to the prediction of how the applicant will use them in a future position within your company. This part is of course important for you, but also for the applicant. Because making a career choice that causes a candidate to end up in a position where the chance of success is small is not the intention of either side.

Studies have shown that assessing skills and competencies on the basis of a (checklist) interview is of limited reliability. It also says little about predictability. A so-called behavioral interview already provides some more insight. This interview method provides insight into how your candidate has performed certain tasks in the past, as well as what strengths have been used to overcome obstacles, deliver results and deal effectively with difficult situations. Typical behavioral interview questions begin with: “Tell me about a time when you…” or “Describe how you handled ‘this’ situation” or “Take us through the way you…”.

According to the article ‘selecting personnel in different rounds’[3], it is most effective to use the most valid selection instrument as early as possible. A work assignment that simulates the future work situation appears to have a high predictive value! If you combine this with the aforementioned semi-structured interview, you have a reliable and valid selection procedure that, if properly executed, is also assessed as personal and binding.


Do you want to win over the candidate? Then work with your hiring manager on a valuable application procedure for both parties. Investigate and give the attention the candidate needs to be confident that making commitment, in the form of employment, is a good choice. The 5 practical tips in a row:

  1. Start with the end in mind. Influence your own mindset and that of your manager by connecting concrete actions to the goal of becoming the best discussion partner for your candidate as a team
  2. Inspire your hiring manager to provide examples of how team members have experienced personal development and internal growth under their responsibility
  3. Create a relaxed atmosphere, and create the conditions for a ‘safe’ environment, so that you give your candidate the chance to accept your invitation to be open and authentic
  4. In addition to using any assessment tools, you have a valuable conversation, for example according to the logical levels of Bateson & Dilts, which prevents assumptions and unfounded judgments from you and the hiring manager
  5. Combine a work assignment, with a high predictive value, and a semi-structured interview to set up a selection process that leads to a sustainable match


[1] https://hetnlpcollege.nl/logische-niveaus-bateson-robert-dilts-nlp/

[2] https://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Predictieve_validiteit

[3] https://www.rug.nl/hrm-ob/bloggen/blog-27-05-2014-personeel-selecteren-in-verschillende-sollicitatierondes-hoe-doe-je-dat

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