What I look for in Junior Engineers
We do one of the two depending on the experience. A junior who might have a little professional experience(0-1yr) or just overall seems more comfortable we will do an in-person coding challenge. Those fresh out of bootcamp we will give a take-home problem. Often we will ask what they want to do.
Resume Chats/Culture Fit: We always do interview chats and culture fit sessions where we just chat about what is on the candidates resume, what makes them tick, and more importantly, get a feel for what THEY want out of the job. Fit is a two-way street and we want to make sure we meet all the candidate's needs.
From someone who will have to interview in a few months for a junior role, this seems like the perfect situation.
The Takehome problem approach should be the way to interview everybody IMHO. Ask candidates to solve a problem in a job ad, use that code to continue the interview process. Instead of the usual hr_phone_interview-meet_manager-meet_team-code_test-meet_Some_VP-get-offer way
I think that would work until someone posts the solution online and everyone is submitting the same code, effectively turning it into an unscreened interview.
Of course, the next step is to do an in person interview and drill the candidates on their work and choices they made. It's very difficult to get through the second stage when the first one was accomplished by cheating.
Interesting that just a few weeks ago we had this exact situation. A candidate was copy pasting blindly some SO code verbatim. Now days, it's easy and fast to find out where the code is copied from :)
Finally, change the test projects with each hiring session so that they sufficiently different.
: Finally, I find others on DEV who do the same thing I've been doing for years: a take-home coding challenge, which is further discussed in the final interview.
I don't know about other teams, but I keep an archive of all previous solutions, and also do web searches. I have spotted copy/paste answers before. In any case, such applicant always falls apart when the final interview comes around, because they don't actually know the code well enough to modify it live.
this is a great interview process! One of my favorite interviews I've done was when they were more interested about company culture fit before even getting into a coding interview
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