So, I see here that you have several years of LAMP development. But tell me, how do you feel about your mother?

Okay, so that's probably not a question you'll be hearing any time soon, but you may encounter a psychologist during your next interview. According to a recent article in US New & World Report, companies are beginning to take advantage of psychological expertise to filter through the mountain of candidates to find the right fit.

"In the recession, while overall business has dipped because hiring has taken a dive, companies have insisted on more comprehensive - and time-consuming - hiring processes when filling positions. A bad hire can create enormous havoc-and financial distress-for an organization, and today's companies are trying to improve their batting averages, says Scott Erker, a senior vice president at Development Dimensions International."

In executive searches, where the consequence stakes are even higher, psychologists will help set up workplace simulations with paid actors to evaluate candidates in a more "real" environment.

Why? Psychologists may be better at overcoming unconscious biases

"Traditional interviewers tend to make their calls on a candidate within the first three minutes of meeting, Sidle says, often basing their judgment on superficial criteria, such as the college the candidate attended, physical appearance, or interests and activities. The interviewer then spends the rest of the interview trying to confirm that immediate bias, in favor or against the job seeker, Sidle says. Psychologists aren't immune to similar judgments-they are human, after all-but they tend to be able to evaluate their own biases."

No pithy advice this time, Dicers. Just be prepared, cover the interview basics, and be yourself.

-- Chad Broadus