4 Ways to Assess Candidates’ Soft Skills During Interviews

As well as considering the qualifications and job experience of a potential candidate, it is also worthwhile thinking about their critical soft skills. These may end up determining whether your chosen candidates will be the right fit the role. Soft skills are the personal qualities or attributes which define each individual’s approach to their health…

As well as considering the qualifications and job experience of a potential candidate, it is also worthwhile thinking about their critical soft skills. These may end up determining whether your chosen candidates will be the right fit the role.

Soft skills are the personal qualities or attributes which define each individual’s approach to their health job – leadership ability, creative thinking, interpersonal skills, and strong communication skills, for instance.

Try these interviewing techniques in healthcare to help identify whether candidates have the soft skills needed to be a top performer.

  1. Ask candidates to name the top skills required in the job

This is a useful way of working out whether the candidate really understands the nature of the health job.

You are looking for a candidate who lists the attributes you value most highly. If they don’t appear on the list, you have your answer already.

  1. Ask candidates to rate their own soft skills

If you ask a candidate during interview whether they have specific soft skills, they are likely to say ‘yes’.

A more effective way of getting an answer is to ask the candidate to list and rank their own soft skills in terms of strength. This shows you how the candidate regards their own attributes.

  1. Give candidates problems to solve during the interview

Rather than asking candidates if they possess certain attributes, provide them with a real or theoretical workplace challenge and ask them to come up with a solution.

Work through the process with the candidate and ask which soft skills will be needed at each stage of the journey.

You will soon see whether the candidate grasps the importance of these skills – and, more importantly, whether they possess them.

  1. Test candidates out in real-life situations

Invite short-listed candidates to stay a while after the interview. Take them on an office tour, introduce them to staff members and leave them briefly to their own devices. This allows you to assess how comfortable they are in your workplace and how well existing staff respond to them.

There are also ways to determine candidate suitability using referees.

  1. Building on employee referrals

If your company uses employee referrals to fill positions, you are in a good position to find out more about the soft skills of those referred.

Ask the referring employee to name and rank the soft skills they see in the referred employee. During the interview, you can verify this for yourself.

  1. Building on job and character references

Ask previous employers or nominated referees to list the soft skills they think the candidate possesses. You can also ask for actual examples of where the candidate has put these skills to work and used them to solve a problem.

Frontline Health are experts at identifying the soft skills you require in your healthcare recruitment. For further support, please contact one of our dedicated consultants.