There are a couple of situations when it makes good sense to include an interview with a sales candidate’s spouse.
The first situation is when you’re seriously considering hiring a salesperson from a competitor. The salesperson may be playing you off against his current employer for a raise. Asking to include the spouse in the hiring process helps gauge how serious the person is. You don’t bring your spouse to a meeting you aren’t serious about.
Another situation is where the job is particularly demanding and you know that it may take a toll on the family. For example, there may be a lot of travel involved, or there’s an expectation of excessive overtime or weekend time commitments. In these cases, you want to be sure the sales candidate has a sound personal/family life and cooperative spouse.
One last, less important reason for a spousal interview is where there’s a high social aspect to the job that’s expected to include the salesperson’s spouse. This is another situation where you want to be comfortable knowing that the spouse is on side.
Interviewing the salesperson’s spouse is not something you do early in the hiring process. In fact, if you do this, make it one of the last — if not the last — interviews before extending a job offer. By this point in the hiring process, you’ll be pretty sure this is the salesperson you want to hire.