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Most reliable interviewers: Admins

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The hiring manager may make the final call about who gets the job, but she’s not making her decision in a vacuum. Bosses today also value input from the receptionists and administrative assistants who come into contact with candidates during the interview process.

Assistants have keen observational skills and a good sense for who will—and will not—fit in with a company’s culture, and they have the boss’s ear, says IAAP President Karlena Rannals.

What’s worth passing along to your boss? If a candidate shows up to hand in an application looking disheveled or is rude to you when scheduling his interview, he probably wouldn’t be a good fit. A weak handshake, poor eye contact or an inability to make pleasant small talk are also worth noting.

— Adapted from “The Receptionist Is Watching You,” Leslie Kwoh and Lauren Weber, The Wall Street Journal “At Work” blog.

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