Advice on Technical Hiring from the Employers Perspective

The below is an extract from a chapter from the O’Reilly published 97 Tthings Every Software Architect Should Know:

 

Most people probably agree that finding top-notch developers requires thorough technical interviewing.  But what does thorough mean exactly?  It doesn’t mean requiring candidates to answer difficult questions about obscure technical details.  Screening for specific technical knowledge is definitely part of the process but turning an interview into a certification test will not guarantee success.  You are searching for developers with problem solving skills and passion.  The tools you use are sure to change; you need people who are good at attacking problems regardless of the technologies involved.  Proving someone has the ability to recite every method in an API tells you very little about their aptitude or passion for solving problems.

However, asking someone to explain their approach to diagnosing a performance problem gives you great insight into their methods for problem solving.  If you want to learn about developer’s ability to apply lessons learned, ask what they would change given the chance to start their most recent project anew. Good developers are passionate about their work.  Asking them about past experience will bring out that passion and tell you what correct answers to technical trivia questions cannot….

by Chad LaVigne
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3″

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