Talent Insights: The Perfect Length For A Hiring Process

21 December 2022

Pen

The Snapshot: There’s probably no ‘perfect length’ but it’s around 3-4 interviews.

The Bigger Picture: It’s all about finding the balance between a) accurately assessing a candidates’ aptitude level and b) not letting them off the hook. Length of process tends to extend with seniority, but in the realm of iGaming and payments we’re talking 4 weeks tops. There’s widespread candidate frustration regarding too-lengthy processes.

The Scoop:

We took the temperature on hiring process lengths from these sources…

  • Career Sidekick: Covered the basic stats, stating that “the typical employer will interview 6-10 candidates for a job, and candidates will go through at least 2-3 rounds of interviews before receiving an offer.” (Read More)

  • Glassdoor: Conducted a full research project on the overall duration of hiring processes. “The average length of the hiring process in the U.S. is about 23.8 days, which is on par with the global average,” they say. This varies greatly by country, industry and job role. In iGaming and Payments, it’s likely closer to 40 days. (Read More)

  • Mike Conley (in Forbes): Software engineer Mike Conley got over 1.4 million views for a LinkedIn post regarding his frustration about a too-long process. He ultimately withdrew, saying “with this withdrawal, I make a stand. A stand against never-ending interviews. A stand for job hunters.” (Read More)

  • Google: In typically forensic fashion, Google used big data to determine the optimal number of interviews for a staffer. The answer? Pretty clearly “four interviews were enough to predict whether someone should be hired at Google with 86% confidence.” The company have therefore introduced a ‘Rule Of Four’ for its interviews globally. (Read More)

  • John Sullivan: The Silicon Valley-based HR thought leader recommends setting a “hire-by date” on candidates, knowing they are prone to drift away in as little as 10 days’ time. “If you don’t make a quick hiring decision, every bit of the top echelon talent will be gone.” (Read More)

Our View:

Here’s what our consultants have to say on hiring process length:

  • Anthony Watters (Profile): “In technical and data, the clients who are most successful keep processes to 2 or 3 rounds maximum. We recommend: Round 1 – high level discussion with HR; Round 2 – either technical discussion or exercise; Round 3 – final interview with a number of team members.”

  • Andrew Cook (Profile): “I don’t think there’s a prescribed length - the length of the process should be driven by the candidate. The aim of the process is for the chosen candidate to accept, so all parties need to have sufficient insight to reach that goal.”

Key Takeaway: Plan carefully to keep top candidates interested, and never leave them hanging too long. Don’t exceed 4 interviews unless you have a really good reason. If you’re pushing us for ‘perfect’, for our sectors, we’d suggest 3 interviews in 3 weeks.

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