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Improve Your Recruiting Process with Competency Interviews Questions
By: Sharmain Zain
Reading time: 4 min

Are competency interview questions part of your hiring strategy? if not, let us tell you why you may want to incorporate it in.

The term “competency” assesses one’s skill set, general attitude and knowledge level in a particular niche. This definition itself will probably tell you how it can help you improve your recruiting structure.

The optimal combination of the above three variables is what you probably look for whilst interviewing potential candidates. For instance, if you are looking to hire a senior bartender who has great people skills but does not know much about cocktails and drinks – then you may not go for him.

Competency Interview Questions vs. Normal Interviews

  • Competency interviews: Competency interview questions are also known as behavioural or structured interviews. These tend to follow an organized agenda and outline questions to test specific categories or skills. Situational questions are given to the applicant that need to be responded to with effective examples. The interviewer can dig deeper and truly gain insight into the candidate’s capability and potential.
  • Normal interviews: As an employer, if you want a less systematic approach, then you may have more of a general conversation with him. No framework will be followed during such interviews. It allows you the flexibility to lead the conversation flow in the direction you deem fit as you go along.

Examples of Competency Interview Questions

  • How are you a good fit for our restaurant/bar?
  • How do you manage your relationships with your colleagues?
  • Imagine a drunk customer walks into our establishment and wants another drink. You think he has had too much, how would you handle the situation?
  • How would you handle if an under-aged customer comes to you to order a drink with a fake ID?
  • Give us an example of a workplace conflict you had to manage and how you went about it.
  • How would you handle any customer queries thrown at you? For instance, menu or drink recommendations
  • Can you share an instance of where you had to take on a leading role? Voluntarily or involuntarily?
  • Share a time when you had to help out a colleague who was struggling with a project or work task.
  • Whether you are hiring a waiter, a chef, a hairdresser, a bartender etc, having competency interview questions will improve your recruiting strategy and help you identify the best possible profile. Check out a few additional benefits of competency-based hiring processes.

Decreased Employee Turnover
Identifying individuals beforehand with the desired set of characteristics will help ensure that they stick around in the long-run. It is imperative that you find the right “fit” for your company.

Forecast Future Performance Capability
Take a look at your past hires and appraise who did well versus who did not. Make a list of the skill set that performed effectively and use that as a hiring benchmark. Competency interview questions will allow you to make the right match between core competencies and the job role. Compare and contrast against past decisions, initiatives, incidents and performance management. It will create a roadmap of the ideal job description and candidate you are seeking- hence saving you time and resources.

Structured Interview Framework
Did you know that 94% of candidates appreciate it if you give them feedback after an interview? Even if they don’t make the cut, it allows them a chance to improve. Plus, you never know – you may hire them in the future. Competency interview questions let you track candidate profiles and allow you to evaluate them according to your criteria.

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