Inc.com suggests three questions that will help you cut through the artifice of interviews and find out if someone is really good for the job you've got up for grabs.
The advice comes from the CEO of Accolo cloud recruiting, John Younger, who suggests that if you move through a candidate's job history and efficiently ask the following same three questions for each of the positions they've held, you'll discover essential information:
1. How did you find out about the job?
If a person continues to find jobs through job boards, they may not have a specific goal in mind and may just be looking for any job instead of passionately desiring the job you're offering. Also, if they've never been invited to apply for a job then perhaps they haven't impressed people they've worked with in the past.
2. What did you like about the job before you started?
Passionate employees look for fulfillment over salary and upward mobility, so finding out what appealed to candidates about previous jobs will give you insight into what's important to them.
3. Why did you leave?
Younger counsels that if you “stick to the rhythm” of the questions, candidates may reveal past conflicts with employers or co-workers that you need to know about. Reserve your judgement and save your follow up questions until after you get through the candidate's entire job history.
A bonus question Younger suggests for candidates for leadership roles is “How many people have you hired, and where did you find them?”, which will allow you to determine whether the candidate has attracted talented people to work with him or her in the past.