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Frequently Asked Questions Assessment Policy

If a structured interview question was clearly misunderstood by all candidates and their scores for this question were all generally low, could you eliminate that question before scoring the interview? Or would you leave that question in the assessment for that round of hiring, but consider removing it from future rounds of hiring?

If the intended results are not achieved with a particular question, it may be considered for elimination before final scoring of the assessment (i.e., given an effective weight of zero).  Any adjustments to the scoring procedure should be based on a sound rationale, implemented uniformly for all applicants, evaluated for potential negative impact (e.g., maintaining coverage of critical competencies), and thoroughly documented.


It is highly recommended that you administer the interview questions as part of a trial run (or pilot) before using any interview questions in the "real" interview(s).  Doing a trial run of the interview questions allow you to determine whether the question(s) is(are) clearly worded and elicit an acceptable range of responses.  A pilot test will often reveal if any revisions need to be made.  To be useful, the pilot test should mimic the actual structured interview process as closely as possible.  Refer to page 14 of OPM's Structured Interview Guide ( for a discussion of pilot testing interview questions and evaluating the interview process.


For additional information regarding structured interviews, please contact

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