The other day I went out for a 4+ hour interview loop at a company here in Seattle. Regarding the amount of time I gave up, reaction among friends ranged from neutral to “I would never work at a company that asked me to give up that much time for an interview.”
My gut reaction is different. I WANT to work at an organization that invests in its recruiting process. Remember, I am not the only person who gave up time – the four people I met with also gave up their time to interview me. Further, unlike some other companies, where interview prep consisted of glancing at my resume while starting the small talk, these people were prepared, and they knew their roles in the interview process. One person grilled me hard to see how I dealt with pressure and no-win situations. One person dug deep on my technical knowledge. One person assessed my interpersonal / soft skills. One person judged my fit for the specific role, my ceiling, and my interest in contributing. In between they conferred, presumably to share thoughts and decided if this was to be a short-circuit loop or not (it wasn’t).
Recruiting is just one of the ways that a company can try to ensure that they get the best employees who are most likely to succeed (organizational culture is another; onboarding is yet another; the review process, in whatever form that takes, is yet another). I believe that all are important and worthy of conscious investment, because I believe that people are a competitive advantage.