What are your deal makers & breakers in hiring, and how to induct people into a design team?

13 Feb 2011 - 7:03pm
5 years ago
3 replies
2594 reads
Jennifer Quigley

I see the topic "design exercises and/or portfolio review during interview" (http://www.ixda.org/node/29463) has gained 45 comments this week. Since both hiring and how we are hired holds value to all of us, I think it would be nice to discuss what are the deal makers and the deal brakers for hiring, as well as what methods of etiquette are optimal for adding new participants to the team whether it be on a junior, similar, or managerial level. As well, when the interview process boils down to a few comparitive candidates, how do you decide in the end which one of the qualified will you hire? How much participation does the existing staff have in the hiring process?



14 Feb 2011 - 10:20am

I wrote a blog post almost a year ago with some ideas that help candidates show their abilities...and help hiring managers assess and understand those abilities.  Here it is:




As for the other questions, I involve others from my team, but more importantly, from the related disciplines most important to the prospecive role, whether they are visual design, technology, strategy, marketing.  I hire the one we love.

I'm not being glib.  Love is a complex emotion, but it's a great hiring criteria.  If you love the way a person expresses their ideas, the way they approach problems and opportunities, the  way they collaborate, then hire them.  Or marry them.  I've done both, with no regrets.

16 Feb 2011 - 1:18am

One thing that distinguishes the really impressive candidates is their ability to show us how they think, not just their final products. Too many people send in portfolios with final, polished images and no context on what was done and what was changed based on usability or research. We want to see wireframes and task flows - the artifacts of your thinking process. We want to hear about the customers you designed for and what your design goals and success criteria were.

At large companies like Microsoft, the hiring chain and who gets input depends on the team you're interviewing with. Assume that anyone who is seeing you or your portfolio in person has some sort of say.

7 Mar 2011 - 4:09pm
Samantha LeVan

For me, there's a certain amount of instinct involved. You can tell pretty quickly if someone can communicate and produce decent work, but you also just need to have that gut feeling that the candidate will fit in with the team. That's where having multiple team members involved in the hiring process can help. The right candidate should be obvious. If not, it's probably not the perfect fit for the team.

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