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This question is aimed at people involved in recruitment/interviewing.

If you found out that one of your interviewees was in high demand (offered lots of interviews in a short period of time from very respectable big-name companies in your sector) would that have an effect on how employable/attractive (in terms of prospects) you saw that person?

This is assuming that the interviewee did not tell you that they have multiple interviews scheduled that day (for example) but that you somehow found out from a reliable source of your own that you trust to be true.

I think on a subconscious level it might have an effect, although obviously the most suitable candidate would be given the job - I'm not saying this would be grounds alone to give anyone a job!

For example if you had two candidates:

Candidate A: Tells you this is the first interview they've had for a while and have no others booked Candidate B: You hear from your source that this person is receiving lots of interest, but they don't mention it themselves.

If both Candidate A and Candidate B interview equally well and are equally well qualified and suited to the roll, would it make a difference?

I'm interested in all countries/locations as I'm just curious, having never been involved myself.

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Given the assumption that they interviewed equally well, had equally good resumes, and both were a good fit for the job, I would go for Candidate A.

The equally good resumes etc. mean that the difference is likely to be due to how selective they are in applying for jobs. Candidate A is clearly serious about this job. Candidate B is going for every interview they can get, and may or may not be seriously interested in this one.

Candidate A will probably accept a reasonable offer quickly. Candidate B may try to keep an offer open without really intending to accept it as a backup in case they don't get an offer for another job they prefer.

  • B may be serious about you, but also be trying to get other offers to use as leverage against you... – Julia Hayward Jul 19 '16 at 7:46
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My experience has been that different companies seem to react differently.

Personally - I'd like to think that my response would be "I don't care, I'll look at both and hire the best according to my own opinion." In reality - it's hard to judge one's own unconscious bias.

Based on practical experience, I have not found that "in demand" equals "high value" - and there's plenty of factors that make a candidate an in demand commodity that aren't all that relevant. So I'd say if there's an impact on the hiring manager/recruiter then it's a psychological/fear of loss type impact and not one that is rooted in practical logic.

Some other practical thoughts:

  • The reverse logic is not true - the frequency of the job interviews is not the same thing as being out of work and searching for a long time. In the tech market, it's been largely possible to find a new job if one's skills remain marketable. If a candidate is out of work for more than 6 months, most managers ask why and think carefully about the reasons, because a candidate that no one will touch is a bad sign that warrants some extra digging.

  • Some categories of candidate hit a high-demand status that has little to do with the value they bring their new employer - age, years of experience, and specific hot-topic skills will outweigh judgement skills, interpersonal skills and ability to learn. Generally I try to avoid recruiting in the hot-demand areas if I can, since I can find as good candidates that will give me better value.

  • The number of interviews does NOT correlate to the number of job offers. An interviewee with lots of interview bookings may make me move faster - to get the interview booked and to get the feedback collected. But a counter offer is what impacts a possible raise in salary (to a point).

As a hiring manager, I don't normally disclose whether or not a candidate is under hot contention to the other folks who are part of the interview panel. Some of that is my inclination that the problem of closing the deal with the candidate is my responsibility and that of my HR. Some of it is that I don't want my interviewers to be considering that - I want to know if they think I've got a good candidate, not how likely or unlikely that candidate may be to take the offer.

I'm also rather blase about whether or not the candidate accepts - if they don't think my company (and my team!) are a great place to work, I'm not interesting in bribing the candidate with way more money.

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