Google's hiring requirements revealed


Laszlo Bock, Senior Vice President of People Operations, Google, has revealed Google’s hiring requirements.

In an interview with The New York Times, Bock says: “The number one thing we look for is general cognitive ability, and it’s not IQ. It’s learning ability. It’s the ability to process on the fly. It’s the ability to pull together disparate bits of information.”

He continues: “We assess that using structured behavioural interviews that we validate to make sure they’re predicitive.”

The Google VP also highlights the importance of “emergent leadership” – not to be confused with traditional, proven, leadership. “What we care about is, when faced with a problem and you’re a member of a team, do you, at the appropriate time, step in and lead? And just as critically, do you step back and stop leading.

“Because what’s critical to be an effective leader in this environment is you have to be willing to relinquish power.”

Bock also addresses the hiring of graduates from top universities, suggesting that hiring managers need to have a broader scope because “when you look at people who don’t go to school and make their way in the world, those are exceptional human beings. And we should do everything we can to find those people.”

This is supported by Karly Olsen-Haveland, Head of People & Organisation Development (Sales) EMEA. She tells HR Grapevine that Google no longer looks at just Oxbridge candidates or First Class degree holders: “We are having a much broader vision of who is the right person to work at Google.”

To read more about how Google gets the best results when searching for talent see this month’s cover feature of HR Grapevine magazine here.

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