Skip to content Skip to footer

Introducing: CodeSignal Learn with Cosmo, the smartest AI guide in the universe!


Do you need a technical bar for your hiring?

Join CodeSignal CEO Tigran Sloyan and Co-Founder Sophia Baik in Data-Drive Recruiting Episode #43 as they discuss best practices around the technical bar in hiring. In this episode you will learn about:

  • The benefits of consistent evaluation criteria, or “bar” when hiring for a particular role
  • The pitfalls of relying on one bar across your company
  • Why a structured interview process is the way to go 

Move Beyond Subjectivity in Hiring

The notion of utilizing a “bar” or consistent evaluation criteria in the hiring process has become standard practice in technical recruiting in order to evaluate a candidate’s skill set accurately and equitably. Internal alignment on the criteria upfront helps to mitigate inherent interviewer bias and candidate bias as well (check out Episode #36 to learn more about how to overcome these biases, particularly in today’s remote work context).

The bar method works well when applied to a particular role and level to ensure consistency in hiring and performance on the job. For multinational companies, recruiters can effectively use a bar to evaluate candidates for the same role across geographies (i.e. how you assess the proficiency of a mid-level engineer candidate in London against the same thresholds as you do for the mid-level engineer candidate in the Bay Area). The more specific the better; vague criteria simply create an opening for interviewers to eliminate perfectly good candidates by holding them to the wrong standards. It is hard to challenge an interviewer based on a gut assessment of “fit,” but constructive debate can take place when evaluating against a set of clear, actionable, and measurable criteria. The use of “fit” can also be misused to disguise other reasons why a candidate was rejected.

Beware of the Universal Application

Utilizing a bar also becomes an obstacle when applied as a wholesale metric company or team-wide in which each role type and level require different skills and potential. Particularly as organizations grow quickly, the bar for early hires can quickly become a false universal litmus test that no longer serves the organization’s rapidly evolving complexity and requirements. “When you start being very proud of your bar, that’s when you may be starting to disqualify otherwise highly qualified candidates from your organization,” cautions Sloyan.

Key Takeaways

Having a consistent and structured interview process that includes a bar based on a given role is a winning strategy for recruiting teams across the board. Moreover, implementing a strategic mix of automation and human-driven interview practices enables recruiters to capture the broadest, best array of talent and move candidates through the funnel in an efficient yet meaningful way. 

Learn More

Want to learn more about how you can build a winning organization through data-driven recruiting? Visit CodeSignal to go beyond resumes in technical hiring with our state-of-the-art assessment platform and advanced coding tests.