In the ever-changing landscape of human resources, staying up to date on the latest trends, policies and regulations is critical to performing your job well. Whether you are an HR generalist or are focused in a specific area like compensation and benefits, for instance, you serve as a leader in your organization and set a standard for all other employees to follow. As we continue to follow the evolution of this people-focused career, our team of recruitment experts weigh in on their most sage HR interview advice and tips.
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DE&I) continues to rise to the top of companies’ priority lists when it comes to fostering the best work environment for their organization. As an HR representative, it is not only your duty to focus on building DE&I principles and progressive HR policies, but to also enforce them throughout the workplace. “When interviewing, be prepared to speak confidently about your approach and ideas in creating an inclusive and diverse environment at work,” says Jennifer Mrejen, Senior Managing Director at Tandym Pro. “When you can articulate your innovative ideas effectively, employers will know that you will be an excellent company culture and brand advocate.”
Though being an HR Generalist will afford you the experience and exposure to the many facets of human resources, the HR field is quite vast, so you may wish to focus in one area to truly become an expert. Human Resources sectors include, but are not limited to: Recruitment, Learning and Development, Compensation and Benefits, Information Systems, Data and Analytics and Performance Management. Research each field more deeply and connect with others who work in these areas to best determine which aligns most closely with your skillset and outlook.
“Companies seek to hire HR leaders that they can rely on to adhere to regulatory requirements. This means working alongside counsel to understand the state and federal laws that impact your company, your existing employees and prospective hires.” says Stephanie Tancredi, Managing Director at Tandym Pro. Knowing and educating yourself on the latest updates to government employment laws will make you an asset to your employer. Furthermore, you will foster an ethical workplace where everyone is treated fairly.
Outside of preparing to discuss your own work history and background, it is critical to better acquaint yourself with industry trends. What are the leading competitors in your field doing to attract and retain employees? For instance, we have seen that in a candidate-driven market, several employers are agreeing to hybrid schedules, or offering more competitive salaries in order to attract better talent. Think about the workplace culture people want to be a part of and the impact that culture makes to the outside world. “We also recommend that in order to better understand a company or organization, you should do research to learn their population, global presence, and hiring plans for the future,” say Jen. “This information will help you ask the right questions on your interview and help you understand how this company measures up against their competitors.”
“In order to set attainable goals, you must understand your metrics,” says Stephanie. “If you are in Talent Acquisition, for instance, how many mandates are you covering at a time? How do you source candidates, and what sort of Boolean searches do you do?” Being able to discuss your performance history on an interview will help you and the interviewer determine if the role is a good fit for you. Don’t be afraid to list your accomplishments, either—there is no need for humility on an interview!
In a digital world, it is more important than ever to establish a polished and professional online presence, especially when interviewing. LinkedIn is your professional spotlight and should be used as a social platform to showcase your work experience and accolades. “Include any certifications you may have and list the software programs (ATS, CRM, etc.) in which you are proficient,” says Jen. “Follow industry leaders and foster relationships with enough people that your network connections are well-established and reputable.”
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