Google Goes to Great Lengths to Hire Right Folks; Maybe You Should, Too - Page 2

Ann All

If a candidate makes it that far, it goes to a hiring committee composed of senior managers and directors, as well as experienced employees from a particular domain who "have a very good feeling for the required capabilities and availability of highly qualified people." They review all feedback as well as the resume and work experience. If there is agreement from the committee, the candidate advances to the next level, an executive review.

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To emphasize the importance of hiring the right people, every offer is reviewed by senior-level management. If they approve, a compensation committee determines the appropriate compensation. Then, finally, a top executive (Sergey or Eric? Dodge doesn't say) reviews the offer, which Dodge says "sends a clear message to everyone how serious we are about hiring great people."

Are all of these stages necessary? Dodge thinks so.

The hiring-by-committee approach doesn't really slow the process down as much as you might think, he points out, because the candidate's status is reviewed by a committee every week.

He writes:

There is no opportunity for the hiring decision to get delayed by personal deadlines for other work. The consensus approach avoids "blind spots" or biases by an individual hiring manager, and results in better hiring decisions. Candidates are compared across several groups to make sure the acceptance criteria remain high.

Noting the importance of having employees conduct interviews and provide feedback, Dodge says they are coached on how to do so. In addition, a system logs the number of interviews, ratings given for each one, whether an interview resulted in a hire, and how the interview feedback was rated by Google's hiring committee. Says Dodge:

That's right, our feedback is rated for quality by the hiring committee. Over time it becomes clear who the best interviewers are, and their best practices are shared with the rest of the team. That is one indication of how serious Google is about getting the hiring experience right.

For more ideas on check out a post I wrote featuring examples from Zappos (again) and hedge fund Watershed Asset Management.

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