Compare and contrast the following four interview approaches
The employment interview is one of the oldest and probably one of the widely used methods in the selection process. An individual looking for a job usually goes through an interview with the prospective employer and the information gathered from the interview can be used to evaluate the applicant’s future in that job/company. There are four interviewing methods that can be used in the selection process, the difference of each lies in the amount of control the interviewer and interviewee has on the flow of the interview and whether the interview is structured or not, the interviewing methods are the nondirective interview, structured interview, situational interview and the behavioral description interview.
Among the four interviewing methods, the nondirective interview is different in the sense that it is not structured and the interviewer allows the interviewee to steer the course of the conversations, the interviewer also does not try to influence the responses of the interviewee and adopts a nonjudgmental approach. This kind of approach entails to draw out the personhood of the applicant and in such a way reveal some aspects of his/her personality that cannot be seen in a regular structured interview. The structured interview on the other hand follows a set of questions and steps that are already predetermined and had been developed to offer an objective and standardized way of gathering information about the applicant. On the other hand, the situational interview and the behavioral description interview are derivations of the structured interview; their difference can be found on the way questions are asked during the interview. In situational interview the interviewer asks the applicant to respond to a number of hypothetical situations in order to get a glimpse of how the applicant would react on a given situation in the future, while the behavioral description interview asks the applicant to describe how they reacted to an actual work experience in their recent past, hence giving the interviewer an idea of how the applicant behaves and acts in a similar situation.
The employment interview had also its share of controversy, especially the structured interview and even its usefulness has been scrutinized given that it is often used as basis for hiring or not hiring applicants. However, one cannot single out a specific interviewing method as the best because the use of the interview would depend on the type of job and organization; however, a combination of the nondirective and structured interview can offer a more complete picture of the applicant’s personality, values, work ethics and future job performance.
Nkomo, S.M., Fottler, M. D. & Mc Afee, R.B. (2005). Applications in Human Resource
Management – Cases, Exercises, and Skill Builders 5th ed. Business Higher Education