As a SHICK Coordinator you should evaluate the qualifications of your potential volunteers prior to training. An important part of the evaluation process is a volunteer interview. During an interview you have an opportunity to determine qualifications, assess commitment, and answer questions about your expectations. Schedule an interview as soon as possible after a person has expressed interest.
Decide if you want to interview prospective volunteers on your own or with a team that includes other staff members or volunteers. Interviewers should be well prepared and proceed with tact and courtesy. All interviews should be held in private.
Effective interviews will accomplish the following goals:
- Assess the applicant’s abilities, skills, and motivation for serving as a SHICK volunteer.
- Determine his/her understanding of SHICK's objectives and tasks.
- Provide an opportunity to review and discuss the position description.
- Encourage the prospective volunteer to ask questions and express concerns.
- Determine if the applicant has a conflict of interest that prevents assignment as a SHICK counselor.
- Provide the first step toward the volunteer training process.
Make sure that you and the other interviewers have detailed information on volunteer positions, a list of pre-determined questions, and the volunteer’s application. Take time to review the information before the interview.
There are a number of questions that are illegal to ask during an interview:
- Race, national origin, birthplace
- Age, height, weight
- Marital status
- Child care arrangements or pregnancy
- Religious affiliation
- Arrest record
- Military discharge
- Credit card information or home ownership
- Length of community residency
- Personal health
- English language skill
In general, it's best to ask questions that relate directly to the applicant’s ability to perform the volunteer work. For example, if a position requires a specific physical task, and the requirement is listed on the position description, you can ask the applicant if he or she can meet that requirement.