Recently I’m recruiting a lot again. What I’ve noticed is how my approach to recruitment changed over past few years. Well, probably if you refer to recruitment tips or avoiding hiring mistakes series changes aren’t that drastic. However I still see a big difference.
I was always putting down a lot of notes during interviews. When you’re recruiting like crazy that’s the only way you’re going to distinguish different candidates after a while. It hasn’t really changed. Where’s the difference though?
Now I’m writing way more about my feelings about the interview and interviewee than I used to. I actually focus on this instead of scribbling specific answers I get to my questions.
That’s simple. I found that actually my feeling about the candidate are more valuable in terms of deciding whether we want to hire someone or not. It’s kind of gut feeling recruitment but then if you ask right question your gut feeling can be pretty darn good.
And yes, now that you ask, there is a trick here. I generally don’t ask about any technical stuff, no matter whether we hire developer, quality engineer, designer, technical writer or whoever. This is another part of the interview – there are people who actually know the technical stuff, whatever kind of stuff we’re actually discussing, way better than I possibly could. What more, most of the time I’m not in the room when all those hard-core questions about programming languages, testing tools and such are thrown at an interviewee.
It wouldn’t change my gut feeling anyway.
What I’m personally looking for during an interview is the way people think, methods they use to tackle problems, whether they are creative beasts and generally whether they are folks I’d love to spend an evening over a couple of beers discussing professional stuff.
And of course, there are situations when my gut feeling tells me “go” and my fellow recruiters tells me “not even close to yes” and that of course means rejection. However you’d be totally surprised how rare these cases are. I actually am. And by the way it’s never the other way around – when I say “no” while my fellow recruiters tell me “hell yeah!” It just doesn’t happen.
For some reasons if you aren’t a person who is interesting speaker when we’re discussing rather general subjects, sometimes even loosely connected with a job description, you won’t get away with good answers to technical questions. Actually you’re probably going to fail at technical part of the interview at least as much as you failed as non-technical one.
That’s why now I care way more about my gut feelings built during general chit-chat.