“Resumes are fairly useless, and interviews are far from perfect,” writes Weebly Co-Founder David Rusenko, Jr. in a recent post on Sequoia Capital’s blog. “So we’ve come up with a better way to screen potential hires: a trial week.”
Weebly is an online website creator based in San Francisco. To get the right talent in the door, this tech startup has taken a step outside what we know as the “traditional interview process.” As Rusenko explains in the post, he and his co-founders conduct initial meetings with candidates and then offer them a week-long trial period at the office.
From the candidate perspective, the test period doesn’t sound like a bad deal; Weebly covers flights, hotel costs and a week’s worth of pay. Between work assignments and office activities, the candidate has the chance to collect all the information they need to decide, “Is this the job for me?”
Trial week doesn’t sound so bad from the employer’s perspective, either. What hiring manager or supervisor would actually want to cut through the nerves, jargon and acting to see if that candidate is a true fit? Bullets on a resume and hypothetical interview questions are one thing, but seeing a candidate get in there and perform (or not) is a whole new ballgame.
In an ideal world, we’d all have the flexibility and budget comparable to that of a funded tech startup. Until then, the rest of us have video interviews and carefully-selected in-person interviews to point us toward the best person for the job.