Google and data are almost synonymous. With Data Centers so large you can tour them on Google Maps, it’s obvious they’ve got a lot of knowledge in there. What did this data uncover about their hiring practices?
Generally, we know Google for analyzing web data, ads, and clicks. But what about the data surrounding their own recruiting practices? I recently read an article about some of the remarkable correlations Google uncovered. Three insights that really stood out to me:
1. Specialization is Everything – Google found literally no relationship between a candidate’s score in a general interview and their actual performance. We’re big proponents of utilizing objective methods to help pick candidates and this only further proves, when it comes to hiring, us humans could use some help. Additionally, they found that highly specialized hiring managers were able pick better performers in their niche. Bottom line? Specialized, role-specific data and experience help predict better candidates.
2. Brainteasers Waste Time – I remember interviewing with Microsoft more than 10 years ago and being asked to solve mysterious, riddle type questions which I thought were a bit bizarre. For example, how many gas stations are there in Manhattan? Using people analytics, Google was able to determine that performance on these questions gave zero indication of a good hire.
3. Grades Mean Nothing – I am sure many are letting a sigh of relief here. I’ve always argued, with little support, that GPA wasn’t a good indicator of future performance. Now I have some data on my side. With the exception of brand-new college grads, Google found there was no correlation between grades and job performance.
It’s exciting to see companies like Google adopting data-driven recruiting processes. With that, it’s important to remember that recruiting is a company-specific process and an indicator at Google may be insignificant in another business, industry or geography. The only way to accurately determine indicators is to assess your own data.
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