Recruiting good people is hard
Aren’t you surprised by that title? Today we were summarizing what our current status in the recruitment round after a particularly disappointing interview, and we actually looked at the number and I was pretty bummed.
Here they are:
The good news it that we have a couple of really promising candidates coming by soon, and I remember feeling this annoyed with the whole process in pretty much all other recruitment rounds.
If you look for top 2% programmers, then I would say it is not hard - it is expected to be that way :-)
Why do you do the phone interview before the coding task? Wouldn't the coding task be quicker to filter out the mass?
Knagis, Code task is a long task, we want to get a feel for the person involved before we move to the next stage. That allows us to reduce the amount of wasted effort all around. If a 20 min interview over the phone allows us to know that we won't be hiring this person, why ask them to invest the time in the coding task?
I agree with Khagis - put the coding task online and have the candidates do it before you call them. It looks like you will save yourself many hours of time doing it this way. We do it is this way round and it is a life-saver. We just do a quick resume check to make sure the candidate looks like they have enough experience to tackle the coding task.
Your funnel will look more like this: 300-400 resumes -> 200 automated emails asking to do the online coding task -> 50 completed tasks to mark (most people won't bother, or won't complete the coding task) -> 10 phone interviews -> 7 interviews
Note that marking the task is usually very fast as the majority of people who attempt will do a poor job and you will be able to tell within seconds. Yes, you may be losing some good candidates that can't be bothered doing the coding task, but actually most good programmers enjoy the chance to show off their chops.
@cbp, that's not true. why would expert ninja developer would waste his time for coding task, while he has many other offers? here in Israel, good developers are already working or checking opportunities. there is also the geographic consideration. if this was so easy, there wouldn't be so much hiring companies.
@Uri Why would they bother at all applying for your company in the first place? Many developers find a 20 minute phone conversation more stressful than a 40 minute coding task. I have found that developers much prefer to do the coding quiz online at the start, they can do it in their own time when they are relaxed, and prove their chops before bothering with interviews. That being said, there is always the great developer who doesn't have time for your company, but once you have the hiring process under control you can actually afford to lose the occasional good opportunity with the confidence there will always be another.
Performing a coding task before a screening interview is like applying for a mortgage before you've toured the house. Interviews go both ways.
Gris, While I would like that. Everything else isn't unacceptable.
It's hard to find top engineers, but you do have to be willing to grow them also if you can find a smart engineer with good core understanding and a good mind... but I second Gris' sentiments also. I do see that kind of attitude an awful lot, especially when it comes to salary.
The problem is the same for everyone. Everyone and their grandmother wants good developers, but thing is they don't even need to apply for jobs. The network helps a lot.
I personally don't even bother applying for any job online. I work with a good recruiter, he knows what I do and what I want and got me very good roles so far none of which required any technical test. Those are a waste of time. I have my public code repository and technical articles, so if an employer can't have a look and make up their mind quickly then I don't want to work for them anyway. It's not like it's hard to find a job as a developer.
Sorry to hear about your stats though, but i cannot say that i am surprised. You got way too many CVs which "might" mean that you haven't been specific enough in your ads / posts. Could be wrong though, in which case I apologize :).
Andrei, About half of those resumes are through recruiters (which are pretty good, since we hired about half our current stuff through them). The sad part is that around 90% of the people we look at don't have public code or technical articles. Typically seeing either jump you up the scale by several factors