Patience and Persistence – the Interview Process Today

A Recruiter's Perspective

Patience and Persistence – the Interview Process Today
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About the Author

Laura Machan

Laura Machan

Laura Machan is a Partner, Recruitment Solutions for a major human resources consulting firm based in Toronto, Ontario. Although she has been recruiting for quite a few years, she still gets a big thrill from calling someone to set up an interview and an even bigger thrill when she hears a happy dance as she tells them when their new job starts. Laura lives with her family in Oakville, where she has lived for over 25 years, and is a significant contributor to the Canadian Federation of University Women - Oakville and Women in Nuclear, Golden Horseshoe Chapter.

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I have heard a lot of chatter lately about interviewing and the length of the hiring process. People tell me about going for six or seven interviews and then having the whole thing blow up.

That’s a big investment for a disappointing outcome.

As a recruiter, I live with this every day. Here are some of the things I have learned that might give some context to the seemingly ridiculous process.

Recruiting is a “side of the desk” activity for everyone except me and job seekers. For HR folks and hiring managers, it is only one of the 20 things they have to do every day. This means that when they get to your file on their desk, it’s likely late and they are pressed for time. It’s tough to be open minded and positive at that point.

“Well, it was not MY decision to hire her.”

Companies are very risk adverse when it comes to hiring. They understand how much it costs to make the wrong decision. The way they are dealing with this is to get as many people involved as possible. This is where four, five and six interviews come in. You typically meet the hiring manager, their manager, a senior leader and maybe some peers too.


The bad news is that scheduling this can take forever, and keeping the process moving through different decision makers requires some serious skills on the part of the recruiter.

The good news is that when everyone agrees that you are the right person, you know you will have excellent support right from day one in your new job, because they are all invested. No one can sit there saying “Well, it was not MY decision to hire her.”

This is the reality of the situation. You have to decide if you are going to commit pretty early on. If you are not keen, then stop the process. Send a gracious and thoughtful note saying that you are no longer interested in the opportunity. If you like the company and the work, then gird your loins and open up your calendar.

It will all be worth it in the end.



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