20 questions to ask IT companies before changing jobs

    If I were asked to give one universal advice to everyone who is looking for a job in IT, I would say: do not hesitate to ask more questions . It’s not pleasant to realize in a month that the new company / position is not at all what you were looking for. And if this is a vacancy with relocation, the price of an error increases significantly.

    By learning as much as possible about the company and position, you reduce the risk of being “in the wrong place." Together with a team of experts on finding work abroad from Relocate.me , we have collected 20 questions that should be asked before you go to work in a new company.

    The technical side of the project

    1) What languages ​​/ frameworks / libraries are used on the project?

    This is obvious: first of all, you should find out what you have to work with.

    2) What can you say about the architecture of the application?

    Application architecture: microservice or monolithic? What patterns are implemented?

    3) How fast does the code from the repository get into production?

    What is used on the project: own servers or cloud technologies? Are CI / CD practices or containerization used? Do team members submit their code for review?

    4) What other technical nuances should I find out?

    Learn as much as you can about databases, APIs, build tools, IDEs, version control systems, etc.

    5) Who writes and maintains the code documentation? How often is it updated?

    It is worthwhile to find out whether the work with the documentation will be part of your direct responsibilities.

    6) How is the code tested?

    What types of testing are used: Unit testing, regression testing, A / B testing, or others? Who is responsible for writing the tests? How much code is currently covered by tests? What bug tracking systems are used?

    7) Who is responsible for force majeure situations?

    What happens if a server crashes in the middle of the night? Who will be responsible for solving the problem? Are there any employees on the project who take up round-the-clock duty?

    Project, team, and company

    8) Key information about the project

    What problems does the application solve? What are the short and long term goals of the project? Is the project raising investments, or is it still in the plans? How exactly does this solution differ from competitors?

    9) What methodology is used - Agile, Waterfall, Scrum, Kanban?

    Sometimes several methodologies are used simultaneously. Nevertheless, it is worth clarifying at what stage you are entering the project, and at what stage of development it is.

    10) What is the main part of the work - writing code or its support?

    Your interest in the project directly depends on this, right? :)

    11) What is the size and structure of the team?

    Someone likes to work in a large team, while someone prefers individual cooperation. To avoid disappointment, learn more about team structure, number of people, etc.

    12) Who will I be reporting?

    And will they be reporting to me?

    13) What are the main directions for growth?

    Are there career opportunities for this job? Does the company have personnel rotation programs?

    14) Does the company take part in the education of employees?

    Are master classes or hackathons planned within the company? Does the company pay for education outside the company (conferences, courses, trainings)? Will I have a mentor / will I be a mentor for other subordinates?

    15) What is the work schedule for the project?

    How flexible is the schedule? Is it allowed to work from home? Does the team work on the project overtime? If so, is this paid extra? Does vacancy mean work trips? If so, where, and how often will they occur?

    16) Can a team be called friendly?

    Are corporate events held in the company? If so, how often? How are conflicts within a team usually resolved?

    Important: If this is a vacancy with relocation, be sure to specify what your relocation package includes. Here you can find a list of things that the company can provide you with when moving to another country.

    Questions regarding hiring

    17) How many stages of the interview await me? How will they go?

    In order to prepare and correctly calculate your time, you need to know all the stages of the interview and their approximate duration. Also, be sure to ask who will conduct each of the stages of the interview.

    A technical interview deserves special attention. Will it be a Skype call or a private conversation? Will you write code or answer theoretical questions? If this is a vacancy with relocation, does the company cover the costs of travel and accommodation for the final interview in the office?

    18) What are the features of the test task?

    Knowing the specifics of the test task, you can better prepare for it. Specify how much time you will have to spend on the test task, and whether there will be a deadline.

    No less important general questions

    19) What salary are you willing to offer a suitable candidate? Will this amount change over time?

    Do not forget to specify how often the company revises the salary.

    20) Can I speak with one of the team members personally?

    The reaction and the recruiter’s answer to this question will tell you a lot :)

    Forewarned - means armed: do not be afraid to ask as many questions as possible when looking for a new job. What other important questions do you usually ask during interviews? Write them in the comments :)

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