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Supporting Job Interviews – How Tenant Involvement makes a difference...by Tony Buchanan


A few weeks ago, I was asked by Simon and Wendy if I would take part in interviewing for a New Homes Officer position at the Oxford City Council.

I was guided through a pre-interview training process first which involved understanding how the interview would take place and then we worked through understanding what the position would entail and the related questions that I would be asking the candidates. Ask these interviews would be carried out via Zoom it was essential to understand how this may affect a candidate’s performance.


On the day of the interviews, I felt extremely nervous of doing the interviews via video conferencing but both Simon and Wendy help me to feel comfortable with the process. During the interviews I required to write down my thoughts about how each candidate answered the questions then marked them (1-5). This wasn’t an easy process as you had to make allowances for the time period each question the candidate had to answer.


After the interviews both Simon and Wendy went through with me how I felt the candidate’s performed and what score I gave them for each question. We discussed the pro’s and con’s to each candidate how my overall thoughts impacted on my scores.


I was informed a few days letter which candidate got the position and how the council came to their conclusion. It was explained to me about the overall scoring system with information to the other interview components the candidates had to go through, and the scores achieved through this whole experience.


Overall, this was an excellent experience and I learnt so much about the council interview potential new employees. Using Zoom to carry out interview isn’t the best way to do interviews but in the present climate it’s the only safe way to go through this process.


It’s not a fair way to do an interview but it has proved that it can be done in a constructive and logical way giving the candidates a new perspective to how they present themselves in interviews.

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This was interesting to read after being involved in a face to face interview. It is an eye opener for anyone to see the process of choosing a new employee and how many things are involved. Not sure how I would have coped with the Zoom situation as to me seeing the whole person and their body language is just not the same as a face on a screen.

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