The interview

The Interview

Each member of the Appointing Committee should, before the interview:

  • review job description 
  • assess the application form /CV
  • bearing in mind the essential & desirable criteria decide which areas to explore and in what sequence – normally coordinated by the Convenor

Applications of short-listed candidates must not be circulated to anyone other than the members of the Appointing Committee.
Selection techniques not detailed in this policy should only be adopted with prior agreement and guidance from your College HR Manager or Recruitment Assistant.

The questions posed at interview stage should be designed to gather evidence in relation to criteria being assessed at interview stage.

All candidates short listed should be interviewed on the same day.  If this is not possible, the interviews should be held over as short a period of time as possible.  All candidates should be seen and considered by the same Appointing Committee.

All candidates should have a positive experience from an interview at the University. Some candidates may require assistance and all interview locations should be easily accessible. Your Recruitment Assistant will ask all candidates wether they require any additional support.

Your Recruitment Assistant will contact all short listed candidates to confirm interview details.

Alternative arrangements may be required for overseas candidates or candidates from elsewhere in the UK unable to travel. Video conferencing facilities are available on campus and should be considered on such occasions. Your Recruitment Assistant can make these arrangements for you if required.     

HR will write to all short listed candidates giving interview details.


Presentations are recognised as a formal part of the selection process for certain posts. Appointing Committee members must attend all presentations, if possible. Candidates for Lectureships, Senior Lectureships, Readership and Professoriate will be required to give presentations to members of the School/RI/Service. While it is normal procedure for members of the School/RI/Service to be present at this stage of the process, it must be understood that they have no formal role in the decision making process. However, constructive feedback may be expressed directly to the Head of School/RI/Service in advance of the formal interview. The purpose of presentations is to present information which allows assessment of relevant skills. Similarly it may be used to test any technical skills necessary for the performance of the duties of the post. In such circumstances it is the responsibility of the Head of School/RI/Service to arrange and write to the candidates detailing how and when these presentations will take place, the issues to be addressed and the audience to which the presentations will addressed.  This will form part of the selection process. Human Resources Service should be informed of the arrangements in order that they may liaise effectively with the candidate. Those who are required to make presentations should be invited to provide a brief résumé of their career for circulation to the presentation audience - their applications/Cvs must not be circulated beyond the members of the Appointing Committee.

The Head of School/RI/Service will be asked by the Convener of the Appointing Committee to comment on the candidates' presentations after all the interviews have taken place, prior to the selection decision being made.

Candidates for Senior Administrative/Managerial posts (Level 9 and above) will be required to give a short presentation to the Appointing Committee normally as part of the interview (approx first fifteen - twenty minutes), guidance should be sought from Human Resources.

Informal Meetings

Where candidates are given the opportunity to meet members of staff informally prior to interview, the purpose of such meetings must be made clear to all involved.  In general such informal meetings should be designed to allow the candidate to obtain general information about the post and its context (both physical and organisational). Such meetings do not form part of the selection process.  It is essential that all candidates are treated in the same way.

Interview Assessment Form

Interview panel members should make separate ratings against the pre-determined essential and desirable criteria from the job description.  Interview assessment forms mirroring the criteria from the job descriptions will be prepared by your Recruitment Assistant and supplied to all committee members by e-mail prior to the interviews.  Each candidate should be rated immediately after the interview to avoid forgetting details or subsequently mixing up recollections of the candidates.   One interview assessment form representing the collective view of the Appointing Committee should be completed for each interviewed candidate at the end of the interviews, be signed by the Convener and returned to your Recruitment Assistant by e-mail.  This will then be uploaded against the vacancy record in the e-recruitment system.  It is practice within the University to use a candidate rating system (A – Highly appointable, B – Suitable for appointment or C – not suitable for appointment) which is clearly indicated on the interview assessment form.  Where a candidate does not meet one or more of the essential criteria and is scored 'C', that candidate cannot be appointed to the post.  This assists transparency as it provides a clear audit trail which ensures good practice.

Where consensus is reached by the interview panel there is no need for further discussion.  However, a discussion is necessary if there is not complete agreement on ratings for each candidate. 

The outcome should be a fully transparent process allowing robust and helpful feedback to candidates on their request.