KuwaitOther News

Job seekers doubt effectiveness of interview questions

By Noor Abdulaziz

KUWAIT: Job interviews are inevitable when it comes to employing the candidate most suitable for the job and is a vital factor of the hiring process. The interview enables these professionals to determine whether the applicant’s experience and skills as well as personality meet the requirements. “When looking for suitable candidates, we often look for someone who exudes enthusiasm, communication skills, suitability and is capable of upholding a certain level of small talk, as having a suitable personality is a vital characteristic as well,” a general manager of a bank revealed.

However, many candidates feel interviews are pointless, as they do not gauge the skills that will be important for the job. “I once applied for a PR job where one of the employers asked me what my approach would be to describing a database to a 10-year-old child,” 28-year-old Basel said while laughing, “and he was dead serious too.” Many argue that a lot of these interviews share a common factor, which is asking the most infamous question of all time: Where do you see yourself in five years? “I was asked that very exact question,” 24-year-old Mahaa recalled.

“As if anyone navigates the world with such certainty. And if you do not give them an interesting answer, they will most likely perceive you negatively. How does this have anything to do with the job I’m applying for? It seems employers think that these questions are the gateway to a candidate’s soul,” she added. Moreover, candidates believe some interviewers disregard some of the candidates’ potential as possible employees by asking questions that do not do justice to their skillfulness. Mahaa’s friend Salma said most of the job interviews she’s attended felt “fake”.

“They ask questions that simply do not prove that you’re capable for the job and you’re mostly focused on saying the right thing regardless of it being true,” she said. Another candidate, 42-year-old Hassan, adds to the discussion by reminiscing about his earlier years dealing with the job interview process. “I remember they sat me down and very sternly asked me what my favorite football team was and why.

When I asked how was this relevant to the job I was applying for, I was told later that it was to test my communication skills. While this might have been reasonable, asking me questions regarding my area of expertise would have been more useful for them,” he said. “Job interviews should mainly be for screening people’s cognitive skills regarding the job they have applied for,” he argued.

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