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October 12, 2022
The Swarm

Prepare your interviewers

Prepare your hiring managers to deliver fair, valuable, and effective job interviews — a crucial element of your startup recruiting strategy.

1. Pick your interviewers strategically

While it can be helpful to involve multiple interviewers in the startup recruiting process, pick those involved carefully. If you add multiple interview rounds and too many participants on the company side, you’ll drag out the hiring process — increasing your chances that the candidate will go elsewhere.

The most important person involved in the interview process is the hiring manager; they know what skills the new hire should possess and what projects they’ll be working on. Other people that you can involve include the recruiter, the hiring manager’s manager, and any colleagues who would work directly with the new hire.

If you have multiple people interviewing a candidate, however, consider having them sit in on the same interview. This keeps the candidate from having to answer the same questions twice, and will show the candidate that you respect their time.

2. Have hiring managers go through bias training

Everyone has biases, but it’s important for hiring managers to be aware of their own unconscious biases, so that they can keep them from impacting hiring decisions and getting in the way of hiring top talent. Ask all hiring managers to complete bias training, which might include:

3. Make sure interviewers can answer common questions

Don’t forget that a job interview is a two-way street — it’s just as important for your hiring managers to win candidates over as it is for candidates to sell themselves. Make sure your interviewers can answer common candidate questions ahead of running interviews, on topics such as:

  • Your company’s mission and values
  • The company culture
  • Compensation, benefits, and perks
  • The organization and team structure
  • Job requirements
  • Next steps in the hiring process

One way to ensure all hiring managers are well-prepared is to equip them with a filled-in version of this company information sheet from Bearhug Recruiting.

Are your interviewers ready?

Once they’ve got the basics down, it’s time to build structured interview questions with them. Here's a playbook for that!

Additional resources

  • The Hiring Manager’s Complete Interviewing Guide from CareerBuilder offers hiring managers practical tips on reading body language, answering candidate questions, and learning the common Dos and Don’ts of interviewing.
  • Need to train hiring managers at scale? Recruiting Toolbox offers customizable hiring manager training for startups.