Once you start shortlisting candidates, it’s time for interviews. Interviewing a helper is a crucial task in your quest for a trustworthy and capable maid. A candidate may look great on paper but may turn out to be a bad fit for your family. In the interview, you will be able to assess the candidate’s working skills, communication skills, and motivation. The following are tips that we strongly recommend that you read carefully.
1. Candidates Selection
· Shortlist several candidates; screen and interview a minimum of 3-5 candidates so you have a basis for comparison and do not make rushed decisions. Moreover, good candidates get hired fast so make sure you select several candidates to avoid disappointment.
· Shortlist candidates that meet your criteria; examine carefully the skills, salary, and vacation expectations listed in their profiles. While some aspects could be negotiable the candidates tend to stick to their request and the market is competitive.
2. Interview Scheduling Tips
· Contact maids and wait for replies; use both phone and Whatsapp when reaching out, and allow time for maids to reply to your inquiries.
· Pick a location and time that suits the candidate to avoid cancellation; consider the maid's time constraints, especially that they might still be working and finishing their contract. Hence, most may only be available to meet for an interview on weekends. Also, consider the distance of the meeting location, how close is it to a metro and any transportation costs she would incur. We recommend that you cover this cost if possible, as many agree to the meeting to satisfy potential employer but might cancel last minute if time and location are challenging.
· Interview personally shortlisted candidates; interviews can happen face-to-face or via a video call. This process is difficult to outsource as it all depends on your click with the candidate and intuition.
· Choose a quiet location; a place where you feel comfortable so you can fully concentrate on the interview. If you decide to meet a candidate in public, do it in a quiet place where you will not be disturbed. If you interview via phone or video call, make sure you have a good connection and will not be disturbed by your boss or crying children.
· Introduce your child and other family members to the candidate, examine how well they interact.
· Allow ample time for each interview, it may be tempting to meet as many candidates as possible in one day, but make sure you allow sufficient time for each one so you get to know the candidate as well as possible. Being rushed could mean overlooking some important personality traits.
3. Interviewing Tips
· Prepare a summary of what you expect from the role; in terms of duties, working hours, days off, and the package you are offering. You can also use this summary to introduce your ethical and personal expectations to the candidates. Give all these aspects thought in advance and prepare a concise summary to share with the candidates in the interview.
· Prepare a concise list of questions, it may be tempting to ask as many questions as possible, but the answers may overwhelm you, which will make it difficult to remember all the details. Make your own checklist, with a couple of important pointers with targeted clear questions.
· Tailor your questions to what is most relevant to you, for example, whether they have experience with babies if your child is very young, or whether they are comfortable with pets if you have a dog.
· Print out the question checklist in advance; this will help you recall the important details of your interview.
· Use the checklist to write down your evaluation notes, if you are interviewing many candidates it may be useful to write a summary of answers on which basis you can make a well-informed decision once the interviews are over.
· Show your best side; remember Interviews are mutual the candidate has to also decide whether she would like to work for you. Do not forget to smile but also act professionally.
4. Selections and Trial
· Make a prompt decision, as employers may snatch up the best helpers quickly.
· Carry out the working trial, once you find someone you like, you can opt to try her out for a day or two on a paid trial where you can start to show them the ropes, and see how you get along.
· Trust your intuition; if none of the candidates feels right, don’t settle. It may be frustrating to contact more helpers, but after all, it is your family life that is at stake.
How to make your offer appealing
If you like a candidate make your offer appealing to attract the candidate. The following are the typical aspects that most maids consider when choosing their next employer:
1. Relationship with the employer (respect and living conditions and freedoms)
2. Salary (many maids have a network of family members back home who rely on her for financial support)
3. Allowances (provisions for food, toiletries, mobile, etc.)
4. Type of work and responsibilities (workload and demands)
5. Weekly time off, and daily work hours
For guidance on the interview questions visit our Sample Questions
For further information, we invite you to visit the FAQ section
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