new study to benchmark interview process times

The Study

Last month, Glassdoor released a study about the average length of the interview process in 25 countries. The study analyzed data from hundreds of thousands of online reviews posted anonymously to the Glassdoor website.

Industry wide studies, like this one, are important to benchmark against to help improve your processes and your candidate experience.

The Results:

– The length of an interview process is affected by the region (country as well as state and city), industry, specific job, and individual company policy

– In the United States, the industries with the longest interview processes are those that employ highly skilled individuals, where verification and screening of their skills take longer

– In the United States, the specific jobs with the longest interview processes were those with hard-to-verify skills, an inflexible labor market, and low turnover

The Key Takeaway:

– The industries and jobs that most often have the longest interview processes are looking for highly skilled individuals whose credentials and background need to be thoroughly examined

Wouldn’t it be great if you had a relationship with a trusted background checking agency so that you could reduce the time spent on checking your candidate’s credentials and in turn reduce the time your interview process takes?

So, Is Your Interview Process Too Long?

The study gives helpful benchmarks for most industries and job titles. Take a couple of minutes now and find the average time for your industry and the most common job openings that you’re recruiting for:

Got your benchmark?

Were You Way Above Average?

Is there a good reason for it? If not, start by taking a good look at the process you put candidates through. Have you (or a coworker) been through the process? Have you asked candidates how they felt about it?

Once you have a solid understanding of your interview process it’s time to improve it. Outsourcing what you can (like background checks) to reliable companies is a good place to start. We have written a couple of articles about this and other ways to improve if your interview process is too long. You can read them here and here.

Drastically Too Short?

There are a few good reasons for your interview process being drastically lower than the industry average:

  • You already know a good deal about the candidate because they are high profile or come from a referral
  • Your current process has been proven to produce excellent new employees

But otherwise, having your interview process far shorter than average may be a red flag to the experienced and qualified candidates that you’re looking to attract.

At the end of the survey, it notes that company policy and choices made by the hiring manager account for about twice as many “of (the) hiring delays as other factors that are largely beyond the control of employers, such as the industry, location and job title being hired for.”

Consider that it may be time to add in another employment screening technique. The first one we always recommend is a thorough check of a candidates credentials and background, done by a professional company.

Making the right choices to improve your interview process is always a challenge but when done correctly it will add value to the process and therefore to your company.

Does the Length of Your Interview Process Line Up With the Average?

Great work! You’re up to date with industry trends. You must have great partners and processes in place. Continue tweaking your interview process to ensure the best candidate experience.


Continuously improving processes, such as your interview process, usually means continuously learning, analyzing, and refining. Studies, such as this one, are good tools to help ensure your company procedures remain inline with industry standards and follow best practices.

If you need a trusted partner to perform your pre-employment background checks to reduce your interview process times, give us a call at 1 (800) 295-7109.

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