In an earlier interview today, I sat down for a panel (two committee members and myself) interview, one of whom was on the committee for a previous position that I interviewed for but was not selected.

My current understanding of how hiring committees work, whether it is a single-decision maker and the rest are advisers or a member majority vote. The individual in question may, or may not have, played a role in the final decision.

Given this, should I inform the other member of the current panel that his colleague should recuse herself?

My current leaning is to let sleeping dogs lie, because the act of informing may backfire if not handled correctly or that I may have the incorrect presumption in their role.

Interview 1: Person A, B, C.

Interview 2: Person C and D.

The person in question is C and the member that I would be informing would be D.

  • 2
    Why would it be surprising that C would participate in both interviews? There may be some context that I'm missing but normally if you're interviewing for positions in the same or similar groups, you'd interview with many of the same people. But things may be different in, say, a German public-sector employer and an American private-sector employer. Commented Oct 8, 2015 at 5:29
  • Ahh, forgot to mention United States. University Clerical/Administrative Position (Student). But in the context of the regular workforce, would my leaning be correct? It would be unethical to inform? Or at the very least, unwise?
    – Bluebird
    Commented Oct 8, 2015 at 5:32
  • 7
    In the US private sector, it would be silly to inform anyone because there is nothing wrong with C participating in both. If C is going to potentially supervise you, you'd expect that he or she would participate in both interviews. C wouldn't be doing anything unethical so there would be nothing to inform D or C about (don't assume that C remembers interviewing you in the past). Commented Oct 8, 2015 at 5:35
  • If I were the hiring manager and knew that Person C had interviewed you previously, I would want them on my panel again. They could offer more insight on why you weren't hired previously, how you've changed since then, and why it does or does not matter for the current position.
    – David K
    Commented Oct 8, 2015 at 12:34
  • FYI there are lots of other ways panel interviews work, including "consensus" (panel makes a decision among itself) "everyone has to say yes". Also some members of a panel may be observers. Commented Jun 9, 2023 at 12:44

1 Answer 1


There is nothing unusual or wrong in being interviewed by people who have previously interviewed you. In fact its normal practice. There are benefits to the company in getting opinions from people who have interviewed you before.

Complaining about this would be seen as petty, and mark you out as "difficult to work with".

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