How to Apply Google Research to Streamline Hiring | Seattle Executive Recruiters

      The Rule of Four: How to Apply Google’s Research to Your Hiring Process

      As a hiring manager, you undoubtedly know how long and frustrating the hiring process can be for everyone involved. Finding the right person to fill your vacancies can often take much longer than expected. When you find yourself without a staff member unexpectedly, the need to fill this vacancy is greater than ever.

      As one of the world’s top companies, Google receives over two million applications each year. To help streamline this process, the company researched the hiring process to start making more accurate predictions about hiring team members. Let’s take a look at some of the key findings of their work and how you can apply this to your business moving forward.

      Google’s Research Into Hiring Practices

      It’s believed that landing a job at Google is ten times harder than getting into Harvard. This fact alone should be enough to dissuade some individuals from applying, but the company still finds itself flooded with applications each year. Google’s People Analytics team took this issue into their own hands and decided to examine five years of data from past interviews with the company. They wanted to learn how many interviews are needed in order to make an accurate prediction about whether a candidate would receive a job offer or not from the company.

      After studying this data, it was found that you could accurately predict whether a candidate would be hired by the company after four interviews. After that, an additional interview wouldn’t change this probability, which was predicted to be 86% accurate. In fact, for each additional interview, you are only wasting the time of everyone who is involved with the process, and very little extra is likely to be gained from the fifth or sixth interviews.

      Google used this data to implement its Rule of Four, which has helped to make many changes within the hiring process at Google. It saves the company an average of two weeks per position and also saves the HR team and other senior team members thousands of hours each year on interviews. On top of that, this makes the hiring process much less painful for candidates who found returning for extra interviews to be incredibly draining and frustrating.

      Applying Google’s Research to Your Business

      Even if you are working within an organization that’s much smaller than Google, you can still apply elements of this research to your hiring procedures. Let’s take a look at some of the key takeaways from Google’s research that you can apply to your future interviews and applications.

      Save Your Business Time and Resources

      There’s no denying that interviews take up a huge amount of a business’s time and energy. The interview and feedback process is often very drawn out for everyone involved, and it’s time your employees will never get back. If your company is known for having endless rounds of interviews, encourage your team to consider cutting back on these. The top managers in your organization have much better things to do than sit through endless interviews with the same candidates, so work together to cut back on a few of the interview rounds where possible.

      Consider the Time It Takes to Hire a New Employee

      The time-to-hire length is something your company should always be considering during each round of interviews. The longer it takes for your organization to fill a position, the more money you are spending on advertising this position and interviewing unqualified candidates. Especially for companies who are receiving millions of applicants, like Google does, this is something you can’t afford to not think about. As a hiring manager, look at every step of your hiring process and figure out where there are unnecessary gaps that are adding to your time-to-hire.

      The Overall Application Process

      When it comes to the application process, most businesses simply think about it from their point of view. Hiring managers also need to take a step back and think about what impression they are giving to their candidates. The candidate experience is the impression that you give of your business during and after the interview and hiring process. This can have a huge impact on your organization as a whole, regardless of whether your company hires someone or not. With the ease of rating companies online today, it’s important for you to offer every candidate an excellent experience from start to finish, regardless of the outcome of their interview.

      If an individual is hired within your organization, you want them to be engaged from the first day of working with your company. For example, Google often used to require candidates to take part in 12 interviews in order to secure a position. The amount of time and effort that’s required for this many interviews isn’t going to give a good first impression to anyone. The Rule of Four helps to make Google more efficient at this process now, and it’s something we can all apply to our workplace.

      The Use of Technology in the Hiring Process

      With the increase in the reliance of technology during the hiring process, we also encourage you to think about ways to reduce the time involved in this process. Initial interviews could be conducted on Zoom, which saves everyone time traveling to and from the office. On top of that, you can use automated software to pre-screen candidates, which you can then review at a time that’s convenient to you. This is an excellent way to get a good overall first impression of a candidate and decide whether it’s even worth bringing them in for an interview.

      Google’s research is certainly something that can be applied to any business, and we encourage you to take a hard look at your company’s current hiring process. There’s no denying that many companies waste a lot of time selecting a suitable candidate for a position. By following the Rule of Four and cutting out unnecessary interview rounds, you can improve your company’s reputation and make the hiring process more pleasurable for everyone involved.

      National Executive Search Firm | How We Help


      Our hands-on executive recruiters have experience working with private, public, pre-IPO, and non-profit organizations. Clients are typically $50 million in revenue to Fortune 1000’s or have assets between $500 million to $15 billion. Successful placements span the entire C-Suite – CEOChief Operating OfficerChief Financial Officer, and include vice presidentgeneral counsel, and other director-level leadership roles.

      Learn how we deliver top talent, no matter the need, with our industry-leading research and resources. Discover the strategy that made Cowen Partners one of the best executive search firms in New York, Chicago, Seattle, Atlanta, Dallas, Los Angeles, and beyond.

      Get in Touch.

      Fill out the email request form to learn more about our approach.

        [honeypot website]