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The Purpose of Competency Based Interviews in Engineering

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Engineers are naturally technical, so it can often be difficult to assess softer communication skills. Competency-based interviewing (CBI) focuses on how an engineering candidate has applied their technical and non-technical skills and experiences to particular work situations. The interview questions are designed to elicit information about competencies that are linked to the essential functions of the job role and are necessary to performing the role successfully. 

How should the Competency Based Interview process be carried out?

Trained interviewers or hiring managers should carry out the interviews and guide the candidate through the process. Typically, the interview process is conducted by interviewers from relevant teams such as Product Development Managers, Project Coordinators and Project Managers.

The hiring manager may participate in the whole or part of the interview. The interviewers should ask a set of questions designed to measure the specific competencies important to the role for which the candidate is applying.

For each question, the interviewer should ask the candidate to provide specific examples of how they would respond to an actual situation, problem or task. This is to enable the clarification of information about the situation or task, the response to the situation, or the outcome of the actions. 

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