|  April 15, 2014

Job search terms: What’s a hiring manager?

Part of the reason I started this site was to bring the job search back down to earth. Sometimes the smallest things cause unnecessary stress when you really, really want a job.

Common terms get thrown around all the time and become second nature to recruiters but a lot of job seekers are left wondering, what does that even mean? 

To kick off this series on common job search terms, let’s start with what a Hiring Manager is:

A bit of background:

Getting a job filled is a collaborative effort. The people who get to weigh in on the selection process are recruiters and those who work on (or with) the team that the new hire will join. The number of people involved will vary by company. For example, for my current job I interviewed with over 10 people but in other cases you may only interview with 1 or 2.

As long as the company has a recruiting team, you will likely first interview with the recruiter. But after that the next very important person you’ll speak with is the hiring manager.

What’s a hiring manager?

The hiring manager is the key partner to the recruiter on any particular job. They work on the team that the job is on. They are probably the person who wrote the job description, and determined what skills are nice-to-haves and need-to-haves. They are also the person with most of the decision making power as the future hire is probably going to report into them.

In many ways, they’re the most important person involved in the search.

If you’re interviewing with the Hiring Manager…

That’s  a good sign. It means the recruiter (based on your resume or a first round screen) thinks you’re a good match for the job. While an interview with a recruiter will have more behavioral interview questions, an interview with the hiring manager will probably be a lot more technical and related to the job. Questions such as “a big part of this job is doing X – can you share your experience in this area” are common.

You can also expect them to share some helpful information about the job and what they’re looking for in a candidate. Not only do they know it best, but they generally also have the most at stake because they’re going to be the one managing you.

Other things to keep in mind

When you’re interviewing with the hiring manager, you should be sizing them up as well. Is this someone you’d want to work with every day? Do you feel like you’ll be able to learn from them? Will they support your growth?  Even though it’s hard to really determine some of these things in a short interview, go with your gut.

What other job search terms do you want to hear about? Leave a comment and I’ll cover it in an upcoming post.

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