If you’re looking for a large number of employees to fill the same or similar positions, a fast way to find the candidates you need may be with a group interview.  Group interviews help you to evaluate multiple applicants quickly while seeing how they interact with others. These interviews may take longer than traditional individual interviews, but you’ll be able to fill multiple positions at once.

Conducting group interviews doesn’t have to be intimidating. Follow these tips to make the most out of group interviews and have fun doing it.

Plan the day

Don’t go in blind. Group interviews are different than one-on-ones in that you need to have a structure for the conversation. Since you’ll be evaluating strengths and weaknesses of multiple people at once, make a list for what you’re looking for with potential employees and anticipate how you’ll handle several folks at a time.

Structure the room

If you want to create a collaborative open environment, arrange chairs in a circle to encourage candidates to interact together. If you prefer to evaluate candidates with a question and answer session, line up chairs to create the feeling of a panel.

Notice the energy

Give candidates a problem to solve in small groups and see who stands out as leaders or who chimes in with innovative ideas. If the position you’re looking to fill involves customer interaction, you’ll want to make sure they’re comfortable speaking in front of others.

Give them a chance to shine

Make sure you leave some time to allow candidates to answer some questions individually. A group interview setting can be extremely intimidating for a first-time employee and they may be a bit shy speaking up at first. Ask candidates to share any past work experience and why they’re interested in the position; this can help you find some diamonds in the rough.

Group interviews can be fun and effective. Make sure you’re ready and you’ll find the candidates you need so you can get back to business. Happy hiring!