Interviews - giving them

Discussion in 'OT Technology' started by hsmith, Mar 1, 2010.

  1. hsmith

    hsmith OT Supporter

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    This isn't a "how do i do well in an interview" thread - this is a "how do i weed out fucksticks" thread :o

    Besides obvious things, what are some good ways to narrow out candidates.

    Do you give scenarios and ask for them to break down how to solve it? Do you expect them to figure it out during the interview - give them a night to think it over?

    I am moving up the career ladder and i've only been in two interviews my entire life, so this isn't my strongest suit :o - they will be working for me, so i want good people :o
     
  2. kingtoad

    kingtoad OT Supporter

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    You'll weed 90% of them out just by looking at their resume.

    The rest that do make it into the interview are going to bullshit and will appear as if they know more than they actually do. Run through a few questions regarding their skillsets, what they've worked on, their technical understanding of certain models/architecture/whatever, and some bullshit questions like their ideal work environment and how they work under pressure. Just to get a general idea of what they're looking for and if they can be socially acceptable in your firm.

    What it really boils down to is just a simple test to weed through their bullshit. They will all say they can do something, but the truth is, the fact whether they can do it or not remains unknown until you can verify their skills. For web developers, I've done requested simple scripts done such as database abstractions, mvc implementations, oop, utilizing floats in css and valid markup. I've never really asked for anything overly complicated. Just enough to validate they're not BSing you.
     
  3. kingtoad

    kingtoad OT Supporter

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    Oh, and the scripts are usually written on a piece of paper and reviewed for validity immediately after their completed.
     
  4. GOGZILLA

    GOGZILLA Double-Uranium Member

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  5. SIGirl

    SIGirl Super Duper Moderator Super Moderator

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    Being the one getting interviewed sucks. I had an interview last week with an HR guy at a software company and he wanted me to talk about a recent project. I start talking about abstracting layers so you can add/remove things without having issues, the data access layer, the logic used in the back end, making it easy to reuse code etc...I tried to keep it easy to understand for an HR guy. Turns out he's a developer turned hr guy and he didn't like that I didn't use enough "technical terms" like polymorphism etc. God I hate that. To me throwing around common coding words doesn't mean you know anything...
     
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  6. kimsland

    kimsland New Member

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    How long is the lunchbreak?
    What time do we knock off?
    Are coffees allowed at the computer?

    :big grin: no but seriously. What's the position? I suppose "Programming"?
    Are they working in a team?
    Do they need to liaise with the customer?
    Is it specialized work, that no ones ever done before?
    What are the requirements for the present staff? Do they need to get along together?
    Is it contract; part-time; casual or full time work?
    What type of person would you like to work with yourself? Strong minded and ambitious like you? Or more of an apprentice or trainee, open minded, outlook?

    The position must contain the standard qualifications required.
    It should have set experience levels, to suit your environment.
    The candidate should already be able to answer standard relevant questions.
    They should suit the position and present themselves ready for the job.
    They should be able to adhere to your business guidelines and communicate well.
    Above all, they should be able to do the set work effectively and within set time limits.
    A friendly, intelligent, and ambitious personality with strong work ethics.
    They should have current or past achievements that relate directly to the position.
    References and referees should be fully confirmed.


    Are you concerned they can't do the work? Ask them standard related questions.
    Give them a 2 week indenture period, to re-confirm their abilities.
    Ask them what they'd do in specific cases, especially with other employees are concerned.
    Are you concerned they won't fit in? Social and communication skills and even psychological makeup and personal needs.
    Such as outside work and family life, or living arrangements. Some employees may not be able to adhere to the "social" needs at work. Including work hours flexibility and taking some work home with them.
    Or better yet, employ an interviewer that may be able to "pick up" subtle issues of concern.

    Do you have a set of questions already available? What are they?

    edit:
    Q1: Are you a beautiful woman?
    Answer: No, I am a male!
    Interviewer: Sorry, maybe next time,.. NEXT!

    Oh, and keep to legal guidelines in the questions as well ;)
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2010
  7. DAN513

    DAN513 OT Supporter

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    I interviewed a guy a couple of years ago for a systems administrator position, it was me, my boss who is our COO and an HR guy. The interviewee starts rambling about how he works primarily with the layer 2 and layer 3 of the Cisco IOS and both my boss and the HR guy just kind of turned their heads sideways a bit and had this confused look on their faces.
    It's a fine line to walk for most interviewee's. Use too many fancy technical terms and lose someone who doesn't know, or not enough and the interviewer thinks you're full of shit.
     
  8. 7960

    7960 New Member

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    you're moving up the ladder........... you want to make some SERIOUS bonus points with someone above you? ask him/her "You built a good team, blah blah blah. I want to make sure people *I* interview are of the same caliber. Would you mind sitting with me and doing a mock interview so I can see your style and learn from it?"

    that shit's like crack to upper mgt.

    • you'll learn a decent interview style from someone who's been doing it for a while (make sure you pick someone who's been doing it for a while)
    • if you pick someone in another related dept, you can rely on that manager's support in the future
    • your manager will get bonus points for encouraging team building, resource sharing, corporate philanthropy, etc
    • and, if someone you hire sucks, you won't have to say it but a lot of people will say "he had (so and so) teach him how to interview" so that person will take collateral blame
     
  9. 7960

    7960 New Member

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    you didn't hire him, did you?
     
  10. 7960

    7960 New Member

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    that's why, any time an interviewer asked me to explain something, my first response is "on what level?" and let them set the boundaries. if they say "you decide" then I clearly set the boundaries and said something like "If I was talking to a programmer, I'd say........."

    or "If I was teaching this to someone who knew nothing about it, I'd start with.........."

    that way, they can't fault me for not being technical enough, or not covering what they expected. More than once I had an interviewer stop me at my boundary definition and redirect it another way.


    cliffs: never answer an open-ended question. ALWAYS frame your answer so they know *WHY* you are answering the way you are.





    I typed that up because, as an interviewer, I make sure to try to ALWAYS ask open-ended questions to see how they're going to answer me. It's kind of a little power struggle, and I changed sides of the table so now I get to use the "tricks" I hated...but I also see why they used them.
     
  11. SIGirl

    SIGirl Super Duper Moderator Super Moderator

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    Well, I understand that situation more but I gave very specific details about the relationships in my database and about the entire project and how it flowed etc. If I was hiring someone and all they did was spew out inheritance, polymorphism, encapsulation, MVC etc I'd laugh. They should want examples not just words. I think the problem is a lot of people in this industry don't know how to communicate well and it's hard to see past exactly what they want to hear.

    Luckily, I had 4 interviews there and 3 of them loved me but the one guy just couldn't get past the technical terms.
     
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  12. DAN513

    DAN513 OT Supporter

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    He's the IT guy that gives IT guys a bad name. Showed up looking like he was dressed for geek squad, offered him 3 or 4 opportunities to see what he does outside of computer work to see what sort of life work balance he has, and every reply was computer this, computer that. I think the real killer for me was that he had his picture on his resume, and as far as I'm concerned, the only people who should have pictures on resumes are hot chicks applying for jobs at hooters and actors. Not this creepy guy with his myspace angle.
     
  13. thekraft

    thekraft New Member

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    That is a fucking great idea.
     
  14. hsmith

    hsmith OT Supporter

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    Thanks for the input all. It was very helpful.

    I can pick apart resumes like no other before even talking to the person :o - but the whole doing the interview thing is foreign to me.

    I can hire whoever I want, problem is, there is just no one worth hiring :hs:

    I do like the FizzBuzz test, I'll have to think of a derivation and use that :o
     
  15. hsmith

    hsmith OT Supporter

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    I'd hire SIGirl in a HEARTBEAT








    :wackit:
     
  16. hsmith

    hsmith OT Supporter

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    Maybe I could convince them to pay me to go interview at other companies - rofl

    It is a fairly small company, the owners love me. There is literally nothing more I could do to suck up to them. They are pretty good at filtering out the low hanging fruit, i just need to get good at filtering out people that get through the front gate but just suck at what they are doing.
     
  17. SIGirl

    SIGirl Super Duper Moderator Super Moderator

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    Well, now that I'm single...:naughty:
     
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  18. SIGirl

    SIGirl Super Duper Moderator Super Moderator

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    You can practice interview me. I'm doing a lot of them now and I can use all the practice I can get.
     
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  19. trouphaz

    trouphaz New Member

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    picking apart resumes is very hard because it is so easy to find the right buzzwords and sample resumes on the internet. with a resume only, you tend to only weed out the real bottom of the barrel or people who are really missing some specific technology that you use. for example, i can only really weed out very junior people or people who haven't used Veritas Cluster.

    when interviewing, i've found technical questions to be ok, but not great. in working with my own boss, i'm finding more use in the BS HR type questions. "describe for me me one of your biggest recent technical challenges. what did you do to resolve it? what was your involvement? what do you think could've been done better?"
    from here, if they can't come up with anything, they go down in my mind, but i do remember that they may be nervous. if they come up with something, i expect that they were involved in solving it and can explain what the issue is. the real kicker is "what could've been done better?" there is no instance where you should say "nothing, it was perfect." heck, even saying you could've made sure there was better documentation, at least after the fact, is a good answer.
    the best answer i got from someone was that he had a failure during patching or something like that that caused a corruption in an LDOM. afterwards, he found some documentation that he did something wrong and what he could've done to be better. so, he was willing to admit he made a mistake which is fine because he followed up with explaining that he researched what he did wrong and learned from his mistake.
     
  20. Joe_Cool

    Joe_Cool Never trust a woman or a government. Moderator

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    Ask impossible, ridiculous questions, and judge them by their off-the-cuff answers. :)
     
  21. Joe_Cool

    Joe_Cool Never trust a woman or a government. Moderator

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    :eek3:

    [y]A1hRx__b3r4[/y]
     
  22. Graham

    Graham OT Supporter

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    You just can't win when that sort of thing happens. I try to go layman's terms every chance I get until I see the person is familiar with the topic.
    That guy should understand that. He had no reason to expect you to know he was up on the material.
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2010
  23. Graham

    Graham OT Supporter

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    I've not doubt that you're convinced it makes sense to do that. But i've seen too many times where the tactic simply failed to allow for relevant and intelligent conversation that I would have excelled in.

    And as the hiring prospect, you can't just run them over with what you need to tell them.
    So you wind up being shortchanged because of poorly used tactics.
     
  24. Joe_Cool

    Joe_Cool Never trust a woman or a government. Moderator

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    :werd: I hate interviewing, and I've gone through a ton of it. I finally decided it's pointless trying to guess and conform to the interviewer's expectations. I used to try to figure out what keywords they were listening for and become what they were looking for, but it got too frustrating. Now I just answer straight and be myself and hope I can charm them. :rofl:

    And if not, there'll always be another interview.
     
  25. DMClark

    DMClark Active Member

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    I just sat in on my first interview to observe from the other end...

    I now know how I will never conduct and interview.

    /nohelptoyouharlold
     

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