How to Find Meaningful Questions for Your Assessments

To make sure you can get the maximum out of your Retorio assessment, we will give you some hints how you can set up meaningful interview questions with Retorio.

⌛ Keep Your Video Interviews Short!

Attention should be paid to the implications behind literal interview responses. Questions should provide an opportunity for your users to show their ability to close a deal, reveal what motivates them internally, and give a glimpse into their working style and how they handle challenges. 

Asking your users the right questions will help you avoid costly hire mistakes and acquire top talents for your team. Yet, you might want to avoid putting too much stress on your users in order to ensure a positive candidate experience positive. Therefore we recommend keeping your interviews short and concise. 

Tip

Our experience is that 3-5 questions à 30-60 seconds is totally sufficient to get a good picture of a user and decide, whether you want to get to know them better. Retorio's AI requires less than 30 seconds of video to deliver reliable results.


🔁 Allow Your Candidates to Try Again

You might consider giving your users several chances to find meaningful answers and include regular breaks between interview segments. 

Tip

In our experience, users require three to five attempts per question until they are satisfied with their response. At the same time, the quality of their responses will reach the maximum at this point (after more than five attempts, many candidates start memorizing their answers, which increasingly become less authentic). Accordingly you might consider granting your users several attempts but to limit the overall number of recordings they can make.


🤔 Select Meaningful Interview Questions

An interview is more than the succession of questions and answers. It is rather about how your users 1) present themselves, 2) organize their thinking, and 3) show the ability to articulate on the spot.

Obviously interview questions can be very context-dependent and accordingly there are no "one-fits-all" solutions. Anyways, we would like to share some of our favorite questions which can be used in various contexts (e.g. when assessing users in the context of customer-centric jobs or leadership positions).

Best practice

Please consider that surveys with candidates revealed that they prefer more specific, job-related questions over generic standard questions. Therefore, we recommend customizing your questions for your different open positions.

 

Question 1. Tell us how you organize your day!

This “question” aims to reveal how candidates prioritize their daily tasks, such as balancing cultivating relationships, finding new prospects/partners, etc. Those who mention necessary but unimpressive tasks show that they also spend time on work which is monotonous but nonetheless important to do.

The candidate’s reply should also show the recruiter how they manage their time and which processes they value most in their daily process. Do they have logical reasoning for spending more time on certain tasks?

This question also gives you a preview of what to expect from your future employee.


Question 2. Describe a time you face a challenging situation and how you handled it! 

This question aims to reveal the user's problem-solving skills. It shows what the user considers to be a challenge, and the steps they took to resolve an issue.

It also gives an idea of the users' level of resilience, from how they handled the challenging situation and how they subsequently behaved. Did they bounce back from the struggle ready to tackle more challenges?

The reply is also an opportunity to admit a mistake or imperfection, implying that they are coachable. A changing workplace environment requires learning skills to tackle new challenges, making coachability an important employable trait.

This question can also give the recruiter a sense if the user is pessimistic or optimistic. During challenges, staying positive helps overcome challenges and persevere ahead. For instance, a study by Dr. Seligman found that optimistic salespeople, some of whom even lacked aptitude skills, outperformed pessimists with aptitude skills in a company. “Optimistic salespeople outsell pessimistic salespeople from twenty to forty percent.”


Question 3. Why this role and why this team or company?


This question looks into users' inner motivation for why they chose this position. If it’s just for money or commission, there might be a problem of long-term fit.

Being able to identify the benefits of your company and tyou why it is valuable to their future shows potential for important soft skills.


The reply should help indicate whether or not your users fit into the company culture. Eighty-nine percent of hiring failures are due to poor culture fit; therefore it is a very important trait to screen for.


Question 4. Tell us about an important achievement in your life!

Having your users talk about something subjective like an achievement will give insight into what they value in life, whether it be money, power, responsibility or respect in the community.

An additional benefit—the users will probably also speak about the steps they took to get to this accomplishment, showing their pattern of thinking or problem-solving if they had to overcome a challenge to reach it.


Question 5. Have you ever been asked to do something your didn't know how to or complete a task outside of your job description? How did you manage the situation?

This question tests for adaptability, a trait which has been found to predict success. In fact, 69% of managers consider it to be the most important soft skill that they screen for. In today’s increasingly digitized world with changing effects on businesses, skills to overcome these changes are in demand, meaning you need employees who will be able to learn new skills and adapt to changing workplace situations.

Moreover, most teams can greatly increase their efficiency by incorporating technology into their work processes. Those open to using new technologies to automate processes or generate analytics end up working more efficiently and can increase the productivity of your company.

 

_____________________

Wrap-up

Interview questions are context-dependent but there are some general rules to follow. You might keep the number of questions low in order to ensure an optimal candidate experience. At the same time you can improve candidate experience by giving your users several attempts to record a video. Regarding the content of your questions you might consider asking open questions that reveal crucial soft skills.