Just about every company recruits, interviews and hires its own way. However, like any other business process, we often look to trendsetters for guidance. Google is always a trendsetter.
Google is well known in the Human Resources world for many reasons. We’ve written about the Google approach previously (to braintease or not to braintease…) and seemingly everything the company does gets noticed, and picks up traction. And rightfully so.
Why? Because everything Google does has solid reasoning behind it. It stems from data. And it is forward looking. It may not always work, but the logic behind their approach is always sound. So what is Google up to now? A recent Washington Post article sheds some light on Google’s new approach to interviews. Here are some of the key takeaways:
- Google has non-stakeholders perform the interviews. Under the new approach, direct supervisors don’t conduct the interviews for people that will work for them. Instead, Google prefers that the interviewer have knowledge of the space for but not a direct stake in the outcome of the hire. The reasoning behind this shift is that Google is trying to remove subjectivity from this step of the evaluation process and having non-stakeholders perform the interview is more likely to achieve that goal.
- Limit the number of interviews. Google believes the sweet spot is four interviews to determine if an interviewee is a good fit for the company. Previously, they performed more interviews per hire but the data showed that after the fourth, additional interviews didn’t increase the degree of confidence of the interviewee being a good fit. Since data is king, Google now caps the total number of interviews an applicant will go through.
- Speed matters. There comes a point where if a hiring decision takes too long, the applicants may move on. Therefore, Google has made increased efforts to make hiring decisions faster (the average time to hire within Google is 45 days).
So, there you have it. Hire like Google does. Oh, wait, you might not be one of the largest, and most sophisticated companies on the planet? Well, here are three tips you can take away from the Google approach:
- Measure your recruiting and hiring data. Google will always have more, and better, data than you. But that doesn’t mean you can’t keep track of what’s going on. It’s important to measure data so you can adapt accordingly. At the core of Google’s process is reacting based on what the data says. You can do that too.
- Consider creative approaches. Upon first glance, having non-stakeholders doing the interviewing seems crazy. But there is an objective logic to it. Perhaps your firm isn’t large enough to involve others in interviews. That’s fine. But you can keep an open mind to unique interviewing and hiring approaches.
- Move fast. Any company can make hiring decisions faster. The key is to gathering the correct amount (and type) of information up front. That way, you aren’t starting from the one-yard line, you might already be at mid-field if you ask the right questions up front. Here’s a suggestion: use a mix of job-specific and behavioral based questions).
Google makes waves in the HR universe anytime they announce a new approach. It doesn’t mean you should mimic everything Google does, but their constantly evolving, and data-centric approach to hiring is worthy of your consideration.