Peter Norvig discusses the “no hiring manager” philiosophy of Google, which I’ve heard related several times in conversation. “First we decide which candidates are above the hiring threshold, and then we decide what projects they can best contribute to.”
When I’m looking for a job, I’m interested:
1) working with a specific group of awesome people
2) developing and releasing a product that will make a difference
3) working on interesting, innovative tech
There is no way I’m even touching a company that wants to hire me into a pool of candidates that will then be offered specific jobs. I’m sure Google is a great company to work for. I know a lot of people there who are very happy, and not just about the stock options. I just don’t work that way.
And another thing: as a hiring manager, I’ve never hired someone sub-standard just to get a project done. If I’m desperate, I can usually find a contractor who because of their preference or mine would never be a full-time hire. Who wants a sub-standard dork on their *next* project? I’m not saying it doesn’t happen. I’m just saying hire good managers and create an interview process that makes it near impossible to hire the sub-standard.