posted by Nishta Gupta on June 12, 2012 at 04:14 pm

Thirty minutes or maybe 60 – that is generally the length of an interview. Sometimes I wonder that in this short window I am supposed to judge a person – whether he comes on board the ship – is that realistic? Companies have also come up with assessment tests but human brain can be tested and not the person. I am hiring a person and not buying a machine. Features can be assessed but can you judge a person in 30 mins?


The top management of the organisation possibly wants to hire the best motivated person for the job. Yet do they really have a clue as to how hiring is happening at the ground level? Steve Jobs had admitted that the ONLY reason for the success of APPLE was that he got the best people for the job. HR is possibly the most underrated function in an organisation yet it holds the key to the success of an organisation. If you get the wrong person to work on the best machine – the results are pretty obvious! HR can be the watch dog of hiring decisions yet they have little control on the hiring process other than screening resumes, meeting targets, and rolling out policies.


A person who walks into your organisation has a little hope in his/her heart that s/he may join this organisation.  The conversation normally veers around skills and experience. And maybe education or possibly family background. Do we think that this person has the passion to scale up and learn? Will he bond with my team and help others to grow? Will he take initiative in completing the job and walking the extra mile? 


While we will take time to mature the interviewing process into more people centric conversations for selecting people as compared to skill based interviews, here are some quick signs to decoding the interview:


1. If the length of the interview is less than 15 minutes then you are out of the race unless you are told explicitly that you can join! The interviewer allocates a time scale for each interview that is normally 30-60 minutes . Alternatively if your interview goes over the average time length then this is normally a good indicator that you are seriously being considered and that is why time is being invested in you.

2. You are asked for references! If so this is a positive sign as they would be very unlikely to ask you for references unless they are going to check them out with the intention of offering you the job.

3. You are asked to meet team members or maybe you are shown around the office. This is a very hopeful indication of success. The manager would not risk introducing you to his colleagues if he didn’t think you were suitable for the job.

4. If the potential employer asks about your notice period to the existing employer then this is a positive sign as he is already thinking in terms of when you could start work.

5. If an employer is seriously considering you he will want to know what you are expecting in terms of salary.


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