A step by step overview of Mainstay’s general interview process including examples of what to expect and best practices on how to prepare.

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Congratulations on securing an interview at Mainstay! Whether it’s an Introductory Call with a member of our People Operations team or a practical exercise with the Engineering team, we want our interview process to bring value to your job search.

Don’t you hate it when you start an interview process with no idea what you’re walking into? Us too. We are a deliberately developmental organization- or a fancy way of saying we want you to Grow Yourself. We believe in giving people the tools they need to succeed. As a first step, we’re going to help you prepare for our interview process.

Step 1: Introductory Call

We want to get to know you! Your first interview with Mainstay will be an introductory phone call with a member of our People Operations team, lasting approximately 30 minutes. During this call, we will discuss your background, and focus on the traits we believe enable success at Mainstay. These traits include Entrepreneurial Spirit, Results Orientation/ Autonomous Action and having a Growth Mindset. We will also touch on the immediate goals and mission critical projects for this role.

How to prepare:

  • Make sure to read through the job description before your Introductory Call, so that you’re familiar with the nuts and bolts of the position ahead of time. Job descriptions are available on our Jobs page.
  • There will also be time for you to ask questions, so don’t forget to use that job description to craft a few questions that you feel will help you get to know us best.
  • Block off 30 minutes on your calendar. If you have a hard stop, let us know so we can keep an eye on the clock!

Step 2: Hiring Manager Interview

If your Introductory Call matches what we’re looking for, we will likely introduce you to the Hiring Manager. This call will be a deeper dive into the specific aspects of your background that relate to the role. The Hiring Manager will ask you questions related to projects you’ve worked on and skills you’ve acquired. They will be looking to hear detailed accounts of your experience, how you work with others, and where you are at in your career journey. This call will last approximately 30 minutes.

How to prepare:

  • Check out our Team page on our website, and the Hiring Manager’s LinkedIn profile. It’s always best to put a face to a name ahead of a phone interview!
  • Review your notes from your Introductory Call. Remember those projects the recruiter told you this manager would like this role to take on? Now is the time to bring up examples of projects you rocked in the past!
  • Block off 30 minutes on your calendar, and make note of any time constraints at the beginning of the call!

Step 3: Trait Based Panel Interview

In this stage, you’ll meet with multiple members of the team across our organization to discuss your previous experiences and future goals. Each interviewer will ask you to draw upon your past professional experiences, while focusing on how you used a specific trait to achieve success.

How to prepare:

  • You can learn more about our Traits by reading about our company values on our Jobs page. Make sure to read the definitions ahead of time- if you have any questions about these traits, simply reach out to the recruiter guiding you along the way.
  • Reflect on your past professional experiences and how our values are similar to yours. Take notes on these experiences, and come prepared with questions you’d like to ask your interviewer! (Hint: You’ll know exactly who they are from our Team page)
  • As our interview process will remain virtual throughout the coronavirus pandemic, it’s advantageous to test your lighting, webcam, and microphone to avoid last minute technical difficulties. People Ops will happily run a quick functions test with you in advance of your interview if you’d like to confirm your technology is all set.

Step 4: The Practical

This stage looks different for everyone! Depending on the role you are interviewing for, we may ask you to take some time to present an example of your work product. This is to help us ensure accuracy and validate our conversational assessment of your skills, motivations and abilities. Here are some examples of Practical Assignments we ask candidates to complete:

  • Sales candidates will be asked to prepare for a role play exercise
  • Marketing candidates will be asked to prepare a presentation
  • Engineering candidates are given a coding exercise to be completed for review during their final interview

Final Selection

Our People Operations team will follow up with you regardless of the outcome. If you’re not selected to move forward, we encourage you to keep up with new opportunities posted to our Jobs page that may be a better fit down the line. We appreciate your time and interest in joining our team!

Additional Resources:

  • Check out our BuiltInBoston page for updates on current projects, rounds of funding, and cultural initiatives.
  • Our LinkedIn page is regularly updated with projects and company news.
  • Catch us in the news! Press Releases
  • The Success Snapshots section of our website will give you real case study information to help you prepare for your interviews.

It’s important to us that we are able to be our authentic selves at work. Should you require an accommodation at any point in the application or interview process, please let us know. Mainstay is committed to creating a company where all employees regardless of background can show up and feel they belong. This is an ongoing journey, and we welcome questions anytime during your interview process. We are proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, veteran status, or fitness level.

Our company mission is to help learners take the next step toward a more fulfilling life. As People Ops we support this for both employees and applicants