1 - What is the STAR method?
Let's start with a definition: the STAR method, in human resources, designates a structured and systemic approach which makes it possible to evaluate the skills and abilities of candidates during a job interview. Its acronym stands for Situation, Task, Action and Result, each letter representing a key step in the method.
Here are the 4 steps in question:
- Situation : During the interview, the candidate is asked to describe a professional situation with which he has been confronted in the past (this may be a challenge to be met, or an opportunity to be seized). The objective of this step is to put the example in its context and to provide the information necessary for a good understanding of the situation.
- Task : Here, person must define the mission or the objective that he was responsible for accomplishing during this past situation. The purpose of this step is to clarify the issues and responsibilities that the candidate had to face.
- Action : During this step, the candidate must describe the specific actions they took to resolve their situation and/or achieve their objective. The objective of the candidate is to make an oral demonstration of his skills and to show his potential for initiative.
- Result : Finally, the candidate must present the results and concrete consequences of the actions he has undertaken. He must explain how his actions influenced the situation and the impact they had on the company or the projects concerned through figures.
In this article, we will review the different advantages offered by the STAR method, then we will detail its implementation in the context of a job interview. Finally, we'll give you 5 tips you need to know today if you want to use it to decide between job seekers.
2 - The points of the STAR method
Used for a few years now, the STAR method has established itself as a reference in the field of recruitment and job interviews.
Invented in the 80s by the Canadian psychologist Tom Janz, this method seems to have found its success only recently, given that the climate of trust within our society has never been so tense. Recruiters need to be reassured about the real potential of their candidates. This method is precisely the ideal tool to answer this problem.
The point of the STAR method is that it allows a recruiter to obtain and analyze the professional history of a candidate: depending on the answers that the latter will provide, the recruiter will be able to evaluate his aptitudes, their behavioral skills (soft skills) and their way of managing professional situations. If you are interested in the subject, we have written a complete article on skills assessment.
The STAR method also makes it possible to offer a similar interview procedure to all candidates since specific questions will be asked of them for each step of the method. This makes the results comparable, and equality of opportunity is therefore respected. Structured interviews also allow for a more objective assessment.
3 - The advantages of the method
- Objectivity and standardization : We talked about it above, but first of all, the STAR method contributes to an objective and standardized evaluation of all candidates: the evaluation criteria are clearly defined from the start, and this allows results to be compared of the different candidates without any prior bias.
- In-depth assessment : By encouraging candidates to provide concrete examples of their professional experience, recruiters can better understand and identify their skills, their decision-making potential and also their working methods.
- Enlightened recruiting : By thoroughly assessing candidates' skills and past experiences, recruiters are better able to make informed recruiting decisions. This point is vital since limiting recruitment errors also reduces your turnover rate.
- Valuation of skills : The STAR method is an opportunity for candidates to value their professional achievements and their skills in a structured way. It also gives them the opportunity to show their potential to recruiters.
- Preparation for the interview : If the candidates know that they will be dealing with the STAR method during an interview, they will be able to prepare better in advance since the questions asked will always be more or less identical. This preparation is a determining factor, it drastically reduces the stress of the candidates. The less your candidates will be stressed, the more they will be able to prove themselves during the interview.
- Mutual understanding : Candidates and recruiters both have a mutual understanding of the assessment criteria. This helps create transparent communication during the interview, which builds trust between both parties.
4 - How to apply the STAR method in interviews?
Now, we are going to give you the technique to conduct your job interviews well and succeed in all your recruitment sessions using the STAR method:
- First, you will need to prepare behavioral questions to ask your candidates. Before you even start the interview, you will need to identify the skills needed for the position to be filled and prepare your questions accordingly: these should allow candidates to share situations they have experienced.
- Next, you will need to ask specific questions about each item: Situation, Task, Action, and Result. For example, you can ask them to describe situations where they had to demonstrate leadership, resolve team conflict, manage stress, etc. Ask them about the issues in their situations, how they went about solving them, and what results they got. It is important to structure your speech in order to properly dissect the interview, and thus apply a similar scale to all candidates.
- Once you get your answers, don't just nod with a smile; you must take an active part in the interviews and promote discussions with your candidates. Bounce back to different points in the story and ask follow-up questions to learn more about their professional skills. You will be able to obtain additional details but also flush out those who are trying to trick you.
- Finally, one last golden rule that can be summed up in three words: take notes. In addition to showing your interlocutors that you are interested in their stories, you will collect valuable information that will be very useful for you to sort out later. Good note-taking is essential during an interview, in addition to be a sign of professionalism. This will make a good impression on your candidates, which can also be an opportunity to strengthen your employer brand.
If despite these explanations, you are still not convinced by the quality of the STAR method, you can always use it in addition to a digital assessment center to revolutionize the course of your candidates: indeed, these assessment centers offer the same advantages as the STAR method, while being much more reliable and usable remotely.
5 - The Yuzu solution: assess your candidates with precision
Yuzu is a new generation assessment center, which offers you to assess the soft skills of your candidates or collaborators via the video game spectrum. Developed with the latest graphics technologies of the moment, these immersive games allow you to easily assess behavioral skills from a distance.
After several years of R&D with researchers in psychology and neuroscience, we imagined this digital assessment center, specializing in the assessment of soft skills (essential for many professions, including managers).
With Yuzu, your talents are immersed in different scenarios, each adventure evaluating a soft skills over a period of 10 to 20 minutes.
Assessments, on the other hand, are accessible to all profiles thanks to simplified controls and cloud technologies: in other words, all you need is a computer and an internet connection to be assessed.
The advantages of our solution:
- An exceptional candidate experience to boost your employer brand;
- A solution accessible to all to ensure equal opportunities;
- A decision support tool for detecting and enhancing soft skills.
In conclusion, we can say that the STAR method is a simple, practical and effective solution for assessing the potential of your candidates. On the one hand, it gives recruiters fresh thinking and allows them to benefit from a structured and objective assessment process. Candidates, on the other hand, have the opportunity to prove their worth and highlight their achievements.
This technique facilitates the exchange between recruiters and candidates, and the resulting assessments can inform future recruitment decisions. By using the STAR method, companies can therefore strengthen and improve their selection process while attracting talent that matches the positions to be filled.
On the other hand, in the event that the STAR method does not please you, you will always have Yuzu at your disposal. Indeed, with this tool, say goodbye to complex assessments and make your interviews fun through gamification.
By making your recruitments more stimulating and fun, you will earn points on your employer brand and you will be able to attract talent that meets your expectations.