Classified Position: Evaluate Candidates

Review applications and responses to supplemental questions

Your next task is to screen the applications received via MyTrack and identify those candidates you wish to consider further. 

  • MyTrack contains functionality for all search committee members to review candidate materials and evaluate on minimum and preferred requirements, and professional competencies on a meets/exceeds/does not meet/cannot determine basis.
  • If you wish to use an alternative evaluation and selection process, including a scored search, in order to assist in your initial evaluation and ensure adequate documentation of your selection process, please complete the Candidate Evaluation Form. Other substantially similar forms may be used. If you have questions about whether your unit/department form meets documentation requirements, please email your form to to request review.
    • It is the responsibility of the search committee to confirm that applicants meet or do not meet minimum qualifications.   Please see proposed interviewee review below for additional information. 
    • Minimum qualifications determinations should not be scored; whether a candidate meets minimum qualifications is a yes/no decision. Candidates who do not meet minimum qualifications should not be considered further. It is acceptable for search committee members to bring questions about candidates to the first search committee meeting. Search committees should discuss the minimum qualifications in advance of review to ensure there is consistent understanding of these requirements and bring any questions to the first search committee meeting.
    • If you use a scored method to further evaluate preferred qualifications and supplemental questions, it is essential to identify the selection criteria that are being scored, the number of possible points for each criteria, and the total possible score at the application review stage.
  • When you have completed this evaluation and before you schedule any interviews, please upload your Candidate Evaluation Form into MyTrack using the "Documents" tab in the requisition.
    • Select "document from a file" and locate the document on your computer or cloud service drive.
    • Select "recruitment process" for document category and name the file with the requisition number and job title in the title box.
    • Note: You do not need to request that Talent Acquisition reviews your interview list, but you do need to ensure any flagged veterans in your pool have preference applied accordingly. 
    • For more information regarding veterans' preference requirements, see Oregon's Veterans' Preference in Employment.
  • Update the applicant status for all applicants. Individuals who were not selected to proceed may either remain at "under review" status or, if they are not going to be considered further, should be set to a final disposition status and appropriate reason selected. Please note: any applicants given a final disposition status will receive an automatic courtesy notification via MyTrack that they are no longer being considered for the position at the time the status is saved.

Conduct interviews

Interviews are an excellent way of learning the specifics of the work experience, knowledge, and abilities each candidate would bring to the job.  Interviews give you an opportunity to evaluate the candidate, and it provides the candidate information about the job and department. 

The search committee can assist in developing appropriate interview questions which elicit the information needed to assess the qualifications of candidates.  Use the same set of interview questions for each candidate.  Different follow-up questions can be used to make sure their responses are complete, and it is also permissible to ask candidate-specific questions regarding their application materials.

You may want to ask candidates to complete a work sample exercise in which applicants perform typical activities found in the position. For example, applicants can be asked to complete a word processing exercise in which they prepare, edit, and print letters or forms and are evaluated on the quality and quantity of work completed in the time allotted.  Other examples include drafting correspondence; setting up a spreadsheet; prioritizing a list of tasks to complete a project.  For a custodial position, you could ask candidates to make notations of special cleaning and routine repairs in a room. If a work sample exercise is included in the interview process, all interviewed candidates are to complete the same exercise.

If work samples are used, document the process and keep the completed exercise and evaluation summaries.

Verify Employment and Check References

Checking references is a critically important part of the selection process as on-the-job performance is the most accurate predictor of future job success. As with all other steps in the selection process, consistency and fairness are paramount. Reference questions must be clearly job-related and directly relevant to the selection criteria for the position. The search committee or hiring authority can check references for multiple finalists, but they should take care to gather the same body of information for each candidate. 

It is recommended that at least one reference is a current or former supervisor. 

When you’re ready to check references, move candidates forward in MyTrack to Reference Check. Candidates will receive an automatic message letting them know that you will be contacting references. Give candidates at least 24 hours to give their references a heads up and/or update contact information for their references in MyTrack prior to reaching out. 

You can contact references by phone or email. 

Frequently Asked Questions: Reference Checks 

  • Can I check references for multiple candidates?  
    • Yes. Please let candidates know that you’ll be checking references for multiple finalists, though.  
  • Can I contact references not supplied by the candidate? 
    • Contact your recruitment consultant to discuss this more.  
  • Do I have to check references for internal candidates? 
    • We recommend checking references for all finalists, even if they are internal.  
  • But what if the hiring authority is one of their references? 
    • Check their other references, or ask for additional contacts. If you’re checking references for multiple finalists, be consistent with the number of references you speak with. 
  • How many references do I need to talk to?  
    • Try to talk to at least two references, ideally three.  
  • What if I’ve called and haven’t heard back from a reference? 
    • Check in with your candidate to see if they have another reference or updated contact information for the person you haven’t been able to get in touch with. You can also email references to set up a mutually available time to talk. 
Click here for an editable guide and worksheet:

Reference Guide and Worksheet

Select final candidate

Evaluate each component of the selection process to determine the most qualified candidate, taking care to include veterans and disabled veterans preference in determining overall qualifications for eligible veterans.  If two candidates are equally qualified, affirmative action may be considered.  Another factor to consider with two equally qualified finalists is whether they are current classified employees.  In this case, select the person with the greatest seniority.

If it is impossible to make a selection at this point, you may consider scheduling an additional interview or conducting additional reference checks.  In some instances, it may be appropriate to re-recruit. The Talent Acquisition unit in HR is available to consult.