INTERVIEWS / JUL. 15, 2013
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Heineken: Taking Job Interviews to the Next Level

As the job market becomes saturated with candidates, companies are finding it difficult to hire the most promising employee. With the vast interview advice and CV resources available online, job seekers are able to prepare and rehearse answers to questions - making this protocol obsolete. If a candidate is telling you that they are calm under pressure and think quick on their feet, is there any reason to doubt them? Yes - there is!

With the growing cost of a poor hire, it is imperative to recruit a candidate that will prove to be beneficial in the long term. The Dutch brewing company Heineken took interviewing candidates to the next level in order to hire the most suitable employee for their. Considering the familiarity of the brand, the job posted attracted an astronomical 1,734 application from which the company had to hire one. Remind you of a needle in haystack? That is exactly what hiring is right candidate is all about.

In an effort to determine the best candidate for the job, Heineken hiring managers concocted a fool-proof, one-time-only interview test. A test that would put the statements of the interviewee’s to the test during the course of the job interview. They added 3 things to their interview, and here is a breakdown of them:

#1 Hold Hand of Interviewee

This is a test of the candidate’s confidence in voicing their opinion and how they feel about something that makes them feel uncomfortable. The hiring manager meets the interviewee in the lobby, holds their hand and escorts them into the office. After this, they pointedly ask about how this made the candidate feel - a straight out test to view get an insight into their character.

#2 Fake Heart Attack

Taking on a bit of a risk, the hiring manager starts having difficulty breathing and goes on to fall on the floor while asking questions about salary. This clever technique not only tests how a candidate reacts under pressure but it amplifies the level of stress by the question.

#3 Jump off Building

Going for an extreme approach, a whole scenario of someone jumping off the building is created to further test the candidate’s ability to get involved and volunteer to help (this also tested their arm strength - which was relevant to the job!) Many candidates failed to volunteer, stood at the side with a bewildered expression and ultimately failed the test.

Why this Worked…

Out of 1,734 applicants, Heineken managed to find the perfect candidate who demonstrated their abilities during the course of the interview. Is this the future of recruiting? Testing candidate abilities through real-life scenarios is a step in the right direction, but it is not only time consuming but can be cost ineffective. Despite the disadvantages, real-life recruitment can help employers identify the best candidates and ultimately be a cost effective hire in the long term as it is essentially an interview job seekers cannot prepare for!

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