electrician career: 7 interview topics to cover with candidates

Electrician Career: 7 Interview Topics to Cover With Candidates

When recruiting for your electrician business, a few basic interview topics can ensure you’re hiring the best candidate for the job. Asking specific questions about your candidate’s electrician career is important, but there are several other interview topics to cover.

By using the interview topics in this article, you can:

  • Hire with the utmost confidence
  • Save time interviewing applicants
  • Quickly narrow down the right prospects
  • Determine if they have the necessary experience
  • Establish whether they’re the right fit for your business

Insist on a Brief Phone Screening of Applicants

Before we dive into the top interview topics to cover during an interview, let’s quickly talk about the importance of phone screening of applicants. Once a written or online application has been filled out, you’ll want to phone screen applicants.

In order to avoid wasting anyone’s time, it’s essential to complete a brief 10 to 15-minute phone interview before interviewing any candidate in-person.

During this phone interview, you’ll want to ask basic questions like:

    • What’s your experience as an electrician?
  • If they claim to have any industry experience or knowledge, then follow up with a few questions about electrician services they should know about.
  • If they’re not as experienced as they stated in the original application, then cross them off the list of prospects.
  • Remember, when you’re first getting started, it’s important to only hire experienced professionals needing minimal training. Then, as you grow later on, you can take the time to hire eager candidates new in their electrician career.
  • What certifications or licenses do you have, and how long have you had them?
  • What got you started as an electrician?
  • Why do you think you’re the right fit for my team?
  • What do you like the least about this field?
  • What do you love most about the industry?

These questions will help determine whether or not the candidate is worth your time to meet in-person. As a result, it’ll save you both from wasting more time in the interview process.

Also, don’t forget to edit or add questions to this list to ensure the needs of your business are being met. Plus, take notes during the phone interview. This way, when you interview them in-person, you can compare their answers.

Now, let’s take a plunge into the top 7 leading interview topics to cover with electrician candidates:

1. Dig Deeper into Their Current Position and Overall Electrician Career

First, it’s important to find out what type of employee the candidate is. For example, if they’re bad mouthing their current employer or didn’t make strides to make their current position work, then they might not be the right fit.

To put out some feelers for this, ask them this question:

  • Why do you want to leave your current position?

Depending on how they answer this first question, here’s an optional follow-up question to ask:

  • In your future role, how do you intend to prevent future miscommunications?

As the candidate answers these questions, you might find you need to add additional interview questions to this list. Remember, diving deeper into their current role can help you understand how they’ll perform as an employee.

2. Determine if They Have the Qualities and Experience You’re Seeking

It’s essential to identify the right qualities and electrician career experience you’re seeking in potential candidates. For this reason, ask several direct questions about their experience to determine if they have what you’re looking for.

Keep in mind, some of these questions are repeated from the phone interview. This is to test the integrity and consistency of their answers. If the answers don’t match up, then it’s time to cross them off the list of candidates.

    • What types of tools and equipment have you worked with, and for how long?
    • What licenses and certifications do you have, and how long have you had them?
  • Then, ask at least two to three follow-up questions about specific electrician services they should know how to perform based on that experience.
    • Can you drive a manual transmission?
  • Depending on the work trucks you have available, this is helpful information to know.
  • Are you tech savvy? If so, what software do you have experience with, and for how long?
  • How do you feel about learning new software (like FieldEdge)?

As you’re interviewing the candidate, try to get a grasp on how quickly they can learn and take on new tasks. In turn, this will provide an idea of the extent of needed training and if you’ll have time for it.

Explore how to hire the best electricians for your business by downloading our FREE hiring guide!

Download Now

3. Find Out Why They Want to Work for You

Aside from their electrician career experience, it’s also vital to ensure they are an informed candidate who has researched your business. Also, try to get a grasp on why they’re leaving their current role and how this role would be different if you hired them.

Find out a little more about why they want to work for you by asking things like:

  • How did you find this position, and why did you apply for it?
  • How would this position be different or better than your current role?
  • Why are you excited to work for us?
  • What would you bring to our team?

Don’t forget to ask follow-up questions where you’d like further clarification. If the candidate doesn’t know anything about your electrician business, then it might be time to eliminate them as an option. After all, you’re looking for candidates who are informed and eager to work for you.

4. Explore How They Resolve Internal and External Conflict

Unfortunately, every employee will inevitably encounter internal and external conflict during their electrician career. As a result, it’s important to find out how they’ll seek to resolve those situations.

Ask electrician candidates questions like:

  • Describe a difficult customer interaction. How did you handle it?
  • Describe a time where you had a difficult interaction with a coworker. How did you navigate the situation?

Depending on how they answer these questions, you may either have follow-up questions, or decide not to pursue the candidate any further. Keep in mind, conflict is a part of doing business, so it’s important they know how to properly navigate it.

5. Discover What Makes Them Unique from Other Candidates

Discovering what makes this candidate unique from other candidates is the part of the interview that gives them a chance to brag on themselves and really shine. In turn, maybe you can uncover a thing or two that you didn’t find out in the original interview questions.

These are a few questions you can ask:

  • What makes you different from the other electricians applying for this position?
  • Pitch me an upsell on an electrician service.
  • Is there anything else you’d like me to know about your professional experience that we haven’t covered so far?

While some candidates shine answering these types of questions, others might be more shy and reserved. Pay attention to their body language and vocal cues to gauge how they’re feeling.

If they’re noticeably nervous, try to fill the void with a few warm-up or non-work related questions about their hobbies or interests to try to ease their nerves. Then, get back to your original questions. As a result, you’ll give shyer candidates – who might be the perfect fit – a second chance.

6. Cover All Legal Bases

Before offering anyone a position at your electrician business, don’t forget to verify all legal bases are covered first.

For example, it’s important to ask them:

    • Are you eligible to work in the United States, or do you have/need a visa?
    • How many languages do you speak?
  • Depending on business needs, this is helpful information to know.

Even though these questions might be tricky to navigate, it’s important to cover these topics at some point during the interview process. If you’re too uncomfortable asking these questions in-person, then you can simply add it to your online or written application.

7. Ask For References Acquired During Their Electrician Career

Even though it might be easy enough to ask for references and never follow up, it’s critical to reach out to these references. After all, you never know what you’re going to find out about the applicant. Although, be sure to ask for recent references. Ideally, you want the references to be within the past two years.

If an interview went well with a candidate, then ask them this at the end:

    • Could you give me personal and professional  references?
  • Get at least two professional references from previous jobs and two personal references.

If their references check out, and you’re still feeling great about the candidate, then it’s time to perform a background check. These background checks should be performed on ALL candidates before hiring them.

Just remember, it doesn’t matter who it is – background checks are even important for employee referrals or candidates you know personally. While the majority of candidates will probably come up clear, it’s important to cover all the bases and know who you’re working with before hiring them.

Also, avoid hiring friends and family – this is especially true if you don’t want to ruin the relationship. These types of hires usually end up undermining your authority and tend to expect special treatment. In turn, it’s best just to say no to these favors.

Never forget, it’s important to be aware of scams. Anyone that’s looking to make fast cash or handouts is not someone you want to hire. The goal is to only hire candidates who are going to help grow your electrician business.

Explore how the best electrician software will make your team’s jobs easier, save time, eliminate errors and increase profits now! Book a demo of FieldEdge for free today!

Book a FieldEdge Demo!

Ensure You’re Hiring the Best Local Electricians Using These 7 Topics

Finally, you have everything needed to easily determine the best candidates for your business based on their electrician career experience, background and personality.

Based on the interview topics presented in this article, you can:

  • Pinpoint any potential red flags
  • Discover natural talents that’ll benefit the business
  • Ensure all legal bases are covered before hiring anyone

At last, you can take advantage of these interview topics to start hiring the best electricians for your business now!

Related: Complete Electrician Hiring Handbook for Employers

Want to get updates about the latest content, industry news and business tips? Sign up to receive our emails!