Interview Kickstart: An Interview Prep School for Engineers

Hired Partner, Interview Kickstart: An Interview Prep School for Engineers

Welcome to our spotlight series! Please introduce yourself and the organization you’re representing.

Hi there! I’m Nick Camilleri and I am the Head of Career Programs at Interview Kickstart – the fastest growing technical-interview preparation platform in the United States. I started my career in recruiting with the goal of helping connect professionals to economic opportunities.

As a recruiting coordinator at LinkedIn, I had an amazing opportunity to facilitate weekly hiring committees where I learned what makes a must-hire candidate a must-hire, and what common mistakes near-miss-applicants consistently make. I was frustrated by the fact that I could not share these insights directly with candidates at LinkedIn, and decided to start a private career coaching service.

A few short years later, I met the founders of Interview Kickstart (IK) and joined as the first full-time hire. My job at that time was to drive each of our then-25-students to complete every aspect of the program, ensuring a positive outcome.

Since then, this service has evolved into three weeks of live sessions and a suite of products and partnerships to now empower our hundreds of students a month to organize and customize their career transitions based on their needs and goals. I am joined by our 35+ Career Coaches. These incredible mentors are Recruiting Leaders from the most coveted companies in the industry.

They have all joined IK with the single mission of helping working professionals accelerate their career growth.   

A mission focused on career growth, we can get behind that! So, how did Interview Kickstart come to exist?

IK was founded in 2014 by Soham Mehta (later joined by Ryan Valles). Soham was the 5th engineer at Box. As Box scaled, he realized that finding quality engineers was the one of the toughest problems known to man – second only to prepping for technical interviews as an engineer. 

He believed that with access to the right mentors and curriculum, anyone could be a world-class engineer.

Becoming a world-class engineer is not easy. There is no magic pill, no quick hack, and quite frankly, the process is not always fun, but anyone committed to upleveling themselves should have an opportunity to get into Google (or whatever company they saw as the best fit).

To date, we have proven this curriculum with our 15,000+ alumni – most of whom had repeatedly failed interviews in the past.

While we do have basic requirements of experience and technical understanding, we have never had an entrance exam or filtered someone out of the program due to their current or previous employer or educational brand. By definition, Interview Kickstart is here to teach the fundamentals of technical problem solving and career growth, empowering every professional to take control of their career.

What a curriculum! Can you tell us more about your organization’s partnership with Hired?

Our core competency is to provide our students with skills needed to perform in the most competitive interviews on the planet, and Hired’s is to, well… get you hired!

Our partnership leverages the strengths of each company to help our jobseekers get better results faster. To put it simply, IK helps a jobseeker prepare for interviews, and Hired ensures that each IK student has an opportunity to secure interviews at their dream companies.

During this process, we at IK will meet with our students after every interview (that means recruiter phone screens, technical phone screens, and onsite rounds) to help them identify their strengths and weaknesses.

In doing so, we can help students identify any concepts or behaviors that may hold them back, and make the appropriate adjustments to ensure that their performance improves from one interview and the next. 

From there, Hired will continue working with jobseekers to secure interviews from the thousands of amazing companies on their platform like Dropbox, Capital One, and Zillow.

This partnership is one of those rare win-win-wins!

Dream team! Tell us some initiatives that your organization is currently working on.

Supporting our 15,000+ alumni has taught us a lot about how to successfully navigate a career transition in tech. The third quarter of 2022 provided us with many opportunities to leverage these insights to drive future success for IK students. To name a few:

First, we brought subject-matter-experts from across the industry to host 20+ live sessions affectionately known as Fireside Chats.

These sessions featured speakers from MAANG+ companies and unicorn startups. We covered topics related to interviewing in times of recession, preparing for domain-specific interviews, and Close the Wage Gap with Advocacy and Allyship (in partnership with Hired!).

Additionally, we released hours-upon-hours of free preparation materials for anyone hit by financial hardships.

Finally, we started partnering with some of the top companies in the industry to prep their candidates. More updates on these initiatives will be shared on my LinkedIn.

Thank you for sharing all of that. Our network will definitely enjoy learning more about Interview Kickstart. Anything else you’d like to share

We will be sharing updates on our events, public sessions (including Fireside Chats), and other helpful content on our LinkedIn and Youtube channels. Be sure to follow Interview Kickstart for more details.

If you are interested in presenting at a fireside chat, hiring IK students, or partnering with us so we can prep your candidates, please feel free to reach out to me directly on LinkedIn! I’d be happy to connect! 

Hired is the most efficient way to fill tech and sales roles today. With unbiased insights, DEI tools, skill assessments, and dedicated Customer Success Managers, Hired works with over 10,000 companies around the world to match thousands of active and qualified candidates to employ their full potential.

With better data, curated matches, and higher acceptance rates, employers save an average of 45 sourcing hours per role with the Hired solutions suite. Backed by The Adecco Group, Hired is rated by G2 as a leader in Recruiting Automation, Job Search Sites, and Diversity Recruiting.

Hired is committed to building equity in the hiring process through a more representative talent pool, using bias reduction features, customized assessments, and salary bias alerts to help remove unconscious bias when hiring.

Want to see other Hired partner spotlights? Click here to browse our other interviews.

Interested in learning more about Hired’s community partners? Click here to see Hired’s network.

Are you hiring? Click here to learn more about how Hired helps reduce time to fill.

Are you looking for a new role? Click here to learn how the Hired platform works for candidates.