A New Hope For Interviews (Why We Exist Pt. 2)

There's hope for interviewing yet

In Part 1 of this series, we explored what's broken about interviewing and hiring. Spoiler alert, it was a lot. But despite all these obstacles, excellent interviewing and selection is within reach of most organizations; it doesn’t have to be so rare. It all starts with a different kind of process. Not rolling the dice or going with our gut—but building a process that gets us confidently to a confident, objective decision. This includes things like:

  • Articulating clear competency and skill requirements for the role
  • Structuring the right interview sequence with appropriate team members assigned to cover specific areas.
  • Well-designed interview questions that solicit information that produces insight and confidence.
  • Aligned methods for sharing what occurred in prior interviews and for analyzing the results.

We understand that incorporating even these fundamentals can feel overwhelming. We're all busy, and it's hard for individuals to change how an entire organization thinks about hiring. But there's nothing more important if we want to build a great team.

The four internal forces that push against us

We're our own worst enemy when it comes to interviewing. Here are the four things we most commonly see prevent teams from getting better at hiring:

We believe we're hotshots

Even if they have not received training or done anything to hone their skills, many of us think too highly of ourselves—we assume we're really good judges of candidates. People need to feel safe admitting that interviewing is difficult. Admitting we have a problem is the first step to addressing it. Most people are not good at interviewing, even if they have been doing it for years. And while each of us improving is important, being good at interviewing in a silo is worthless - the full team has to level-up and commit to a different way of hiring.

We “go with our gut”

Many people believe they should just “trust their gut” when it comes to interviewing. There is a better way to interview in order to get the right person for the job. We often spend FAR more time and thought to evaluate the purchase of software or tools than we do the people we hire .Great interview processes start with structure, consistency, and alignment by all stakeholders at the very beginning of the process. More structure to the hiring process means better decisions—and exponentially more impact on your team than that new piece of software.

We underinvest in our interview processes.

Leaders say “people are our number one priority”, and yet interviewing is seen as an afterthought. This mindset trickles down throughout the organization all the way to individual hiring managers, who see interviewing as “one more thing to have to do” and a burden, rather than a core and crucial part of their role. Interviewing is important and worth investing in (both time and money).

We think upfront training will solve the problem

Upfront training is not enough. That is all that most companies invest in (if anything). The idea of coaching interviewers and tracking ongoing adherence to excellent interviewing is new for most people. We can throw training at people all we want, but if we truly believe that hiring the right people is important, we can no longer fly blind as to what interviewers are saying/doing in interviews and how they are making hiring decisions. We need visibility, coaching, and insights into actual interviews.

Are you a people leader or hiring manager who has seen one of these at play in your organization? Want to take on these four forces and start to build a team in a way that's more effective, efficient, and equitable? Read part 3 of this series (coming soon)—or jump on a call with a member of our team—to see how Pillar is helping teams do just that.