What to Expect when Applying at Thinkific

Amanda Nagy
Published in
6 min readMar 25, 2020


At Thinkific, we care about creating great candidate experiences. We’ve heard what candidates love (and what they’ve hated) about other hiring experiences and we’ve asked for feedback on our own process to build our candidate-first approach to hiring for our team.

Before Applying

Photo by Green Chameleon on Unsplash

We want to ensure our hiring team can review your application without delay. Your resume should showcase your entire list of past experiences and highlight your transferrable skills (so don’t feel like you need to keep to one page)! Gaps without an explanation leave a lot of room for assumptions on the reviewer’s end — so try not to leave anything out.

Your resume should be well-formatted and uploaded in an easy to read format (PDFs are preferred) for review. It’s always helpful to ask a friend or family member to read through your resume to check the formatting, ensure it demonstrates your diverse skillset, and to make sure it’ll stand out in the best way possible.

You’ll notice that for every role on our careers page, there’s a set of pre-screening questions. Your answers to these are an opportunity to help us learn more about you! We receive hundreds of applications every month and our team reads through every application to identify stand out candidates that would be a great fit for our roles. Cover letters are optional but they can be a great way to connect the dots if you’re looking to switch careers.

After Applying

To start, we know how stressful waiting to hear back can be after you’ve sent in an application. Our goal is to respond to every candidate within 5 business days throughout our hiring process. This gives our team enough time to review your application and put it in the hands of the people who need to see it. On that note, you will always hear back from us.

It’s our policy to reply to all candidates, even if that means making the difficult decision to say “not right now” or “not for this role”.

Our Hiring Process

There are 5 stages to our hiring process. We’ve outlined them below so you have an idea of what to expect, keeping in mind it may change slightly from role to role, depending on things like the department, seniority, or technical level of expertise needed — certain stages might be in a different order or not included at all.

We move candidates through our hiring process on a continuous basis, which means that you don’t have to wait around for a specific date or deadline before hearing back from us. This also means that we usually have candidates in different stages of the hiring process for each role. Our team will work to keep you well informed about what to expect and if there are any updates on the status of this role, we’ll let you know in a timely manner.

Application Review

We want to find the best people to join our amazing team, which sometimes means it’ll take a couple of days (and a few cups of coffee) to review your application and get back to you. Rest assured, we’re humans (not robots) so you won’t get rejected based on some robot-built formula scanning your keywords. We work with our hiring leads to review applications and find candidates that have the unique skillset needed to be successful in the role.

Initial Interview

We conduct our initial interviews using Google Hangouts (without video). Depending on the role, this can happen before or after our take-home test. Our initial interviews are an opportunity to get to know each other a bit to see if there could be a good fit for the role. The call typically takes 45 minutes or so with time for you to ask questions at the end. We schedule interviews between 9 am and 5 pm PT and work hard to accommodate any urgent or time-sensitive needs you may have (if you’re about to head off on a trip or have received another job offer, for example). To make scheduling a breeze, we ask you to provide your availability over the next 2 weeks so we can find a time that is mutually convenient before sending an interview confirmation. Once confirmed, you’ll receive an email from us to confirm the date, time, and who you’ll be speaking with so you’re well prepared for your interview.

Take-Home Test

Our take-home tests are based on some of the things you will encounter in the role you applied to. The length of time allotted for a take-home test varies by role and seniority. We include instructions for the deliverables we are expecting to see and aim to have take-home tests completed within 3 days. That being said, we understand life happens and can be flexible whether you have a busy work schedule or a family to take care of — just let us know how we can best accommodate you! For all take-home tests, we include a link to upload your submission once completed so our hiring team can review it without delay. We assign multiple reviewers to keep our hiring process unbiased and use a scorecard to provide a fair, consistent evaluation method for all candidates.

Photo by Dylan Gillis on Unsplash

Topgrading Interview

We conduct our Topgrading interviews by video* using Google Hangouts or in-person at our Vancouver office. These final interviews typically take up to 3 hours as we chronologically walk through your past work and other experiences (like volunteering or education). During this interview, we’ll dig deeper into your work history, learn about some of your past successes (and mistakes!), and future career goals. Of course, we know that it’s just as important for you to find the right fit, so we always give you the opportunity to ask us any questions you may have. Once we receive your availability, we’ll send an email to confirm your interview date and time, who you will be interviewing with, and any further details you’ll need to prepare for your interview with us.

* While we plan to run these interviews using video, we recognize that Zoom Fatigue is a real thing and work to accommodate that (both for you and for our team). One way we’ve been able to find a balance between face-to-face time and preserving energy is to start with cameras on in order to make some introductions and familiarize yourself with our team. We then turning cameras off for the majority of the call before having video on at the end of the call to wrap up and so we can answer your questions. If this would make you feel more comfortable for your interview, don’t hesitate to let our team know!

Reference Checks

This is the final stage in our hiring process, where we connect with some references to learn more about working with you. We will only speak to people you’ve given us permission to, and you will be instrumental in helping to connect us with the right people. For most of your references, we use a tool called Searchlight. You’ll receive an invitation from our team with information on who we’re looking to connect with, and you’ll be able to add these references to Searchlight where they can share their experiences working with you.

Our team will also speak with at least one of your most recent references directly. We’ll always check in with you before this happens so that there are no surprises! To help us set up the call, we ask you to share contact details with us as well as any of your contact’s availability. We always aim to chat with your references in a timely matter and check in with you along the way to confirm once all references have been completed.

Working at Thinkific feat. @dogsofthinkific

At Thinkific, we’re always working to provide a transparent, unbiased, and accessible experience to all our amazing candidates. We encourage you to let us know if you need any accommodations throughout the process, or if there is anything we can do to improve, we’re all ears!




Amanda Nagy

People & Culture Leader, baker, bookworm and elephant lover 🐘.