Job interviews are getting longer and more demanding. Here’s how to handle it

When Joe*, an online developer primarily based in Sydney, utilized for a job not too long ago, he knew it could be a marathon course of. 

“I knew, from speaking to grads who’d made it to the opposite aspect, that the hiring course of was meant to be a kind of trial by hearth,” he says.

For the tech bros of Silicon Valley, a 12-hour marathon of back-to-back interviews on the firm “campus” is seen as a ceremony of passage into the trade. 

“There’s panel interviews, shows, riddles fairly than common questions. But it was a check of endurance, too,” Joe says.

“I had to do 12 separate phases earlier than I obtained supplied the gig.”

Once the only real protect of tech, company, and finance firms, this type of “marathon interview” has exploded in recognition for the reason that outbreak of the pandemic. 

Data collected by the Boston Consulting Group reveals that, over 2020, the variety of white- and blue-collar candidates within the US requested to full four-stage interviews spiked by 126 per cent year-on-year.

Those tasked with five-stage interviews, in the meantime, surged by 94 per cent. 

Perhaps that is why, when a LinkedIn post from a weary US job seeker went viral this August, as 1000’s from all walks of life aired their frustrations. 

“I went via an almost four-month course of going from preliminary interview with human sources, interviewing with the president of the corporate, then a panel interview with three VPs, a CEO and CFO, solely to fall brief in the long run to an inner candidate,” one name centre supervisor wrote. 

“I not too long ago took a month to get via a five-stage interview for an entry-level mining place,” an Australian commenter mentioned.

“Prior to COVID, they’d test references and name you in to work just a few days’ trial.”

Method to the insanity

So why are issues altering so quickly?

The greatest driver of the growth has undoubtedly been the transition to distant recruitment. 

“If individuals cannot get in and meet somebody face-to-face, then they are susceptible to wanting to have more and more digital interviews as a means to compensate,” says Curtin University professor Julia Richardson. 

“However, the issue with that is that we all know very clearly that interviews are a poor predictor of efficiency and match — primarily as a result of individuals could be fairly adept at efficiency.”

Red flags and what to do about them

There’s, sadly, no hard-and-fast rule for when an interview course of strays into extra.

According to Professor Richardson, this will truly clarify why firms are embracing this pattern. 

“If I have been to assume cynically,” she says, “one would possibly ponder whether that is exactly what some organisations are doing … testing who has the sticking energy.'”

But there are some widespread purple flags to be careful for. 

Multiple “closing rounds”, a poorly outlined interview course of and recruiters who take weeks or months to get again to you typically point out you are being “breadcrumbed”.

And if you happen to discover that is the case? Professor Richardson has just a few pointers:

  • If you are uncomfortable with how the recruitment course of is evolving, be sure to let the recruiter know. Don’t be imprecise; cite particular examples, similar to if you happen to’ve been requested the identical questions a number of instances.
  • If you may have different purposes underway, or if lengthy gaps are left between interview classes, tackle this head-on. Asking for a particular deadline generally is a useful gizmo in getting to a agency yay or nay. 

If it’s an excessive amount of, and you are pondering of withdrawing, Professor Richardson as soon as once more says honesty is the most effective coverage.

“Focus on the method, not the individual: Thank them for his or her time, however state you are feeling you may have supplied enough data for a choice to be made,” she says. 

A ‘two-way avenue’ 

But Professor Richardson says that there is a place for a number of interviews the place each events are positioned to find out about each other. 

“It is probably much less a problem of how many rounds of interviews are held, however more a query of what is being performed in them,” she says. 

“A greater strategy is to get candidates to interact in numerous work-related actions.Watch how they work with others, how they tackle battle, how snug they are with danger or taking course.

“It wants to be a two-way avenue — allow them to be taught concerning the firm and its tradition.”

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