The Bar Raiser Interview [Recruitment Process]

Posted on November 28, 2022, by Sven Peters

Amazon introduced the bar-raiser interview back in 1999 to basically keep up a certain standard when recruiting new team members. The aim is not trying to just fill positions with people that can do the job, but with people that can actually improve Amazon. They called it "bar keeper" back in the day, but it quickly evolved into the name it has today. The aim is not to keep the same work standards, but continuously improve them by raising the bar.

Who are Bar Raisers?

It’s not a day job. A bar raiser is a person that knows the organization, the company culture, and what is needed for growth. Amazon has established a training program for those people learning what to look after when interviewing candidates. The job as a bar raiser can take up to 20% of the work time. It’s variating from time to time interviews to 2 weeks in a row of constantly talking to job applicants. The last thing is important: The Bar Raiser should be from another part of the business for which the candidate is being interviewed. This way, Amazon is trying to make sure they’re hiring for potential and not for knowledge only. 

What is Bar Raiser doing?

A Bar Raiser is the ultimate decision maker on whether a candidate is hired or not. They work with recruiters and HR managers to understand what is needed for the job and what parts can be acquired over time.

  • They look for the role fit but also for the long term success at Amazon.
  • They try to make sure there is an open, accurate, and fair assessment.
  • They help HR managers and other interviewers ask the right questions related to the company values.

Since Bar Raisers are seeing a lot of candidates across different parts of the business, they help Amazon to make sure their recruitment standards are kept. It’s a role with a lot of responsibility, but it also comes with the added perks such as travelling to different parts of the world for recruiting events. 

Amazon is not the only company that uses Bar Raisers during their interview process. Training bar raisers is a big investment and adding an extra person’s time to the interview process. Yet the outcome seems to be worth it: Better recruits and higher quality interviews.

Posted on November 28, 2022, by Sven Peters
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