Hire and engage: answer questions from two sides

    Friends, we held a meeting in our bank with the MskDotNet community at which we decided to discuss the hottest issues of hiring and hiring. We talked with several specialists from different companies. Life hacks and their stories shared:

    Igor Maslov MaslovIgor , Head of IT Delivery, Raiffeisenbank ;
    Daria Kudryavtseva , Head of IT Recruitment, Alfa Bank;
    Yuri Orlov yobox , Community Lead .Net, Raiffeisenbank;
    Andrey Zaitsev , TeamLead, Development of Mail.ru Group .

    Colleagues talked about how to conduct and conduct interviews, what questions should be asked, how to behave, and much more. The conversation turned out to be lively and interesting, and we decided to reproduce it in text form for you - for sure someone will find it useful.

    Hypothetical situation: a small team in which there is a senior and junior programmer. The elder leaves, the boss comes and says: "Come on, you will interview." A perfectly logical question: how to choose a senior? How can I go for an interview and interview someone who has more experience than you?

    Andrei Zaitsev: In this situation, we can recommend choosing a person with whom you would like to work, with whom some basic values ​​coincide. In order for him to argue his decisions, be competent, observe correctness in communication, be generally responsible and understand you at your level of competence. Most likely, you may not represent all the tasks that people in higher positions solve. Therefore, ask for advice, help.

    Igor Maslov: We must not be afraid, exhale and go for an interview. You need to ask questions that show how a person thinks. The junior programmer, of course, will not always be able to conduct a complex design interview or adequately evaluate experience, but to understand that an interesting and thinking colleague is sitting with you can be without super-knowledge of frameworks and systems.
    It happens that you have to choose between two evils: one candidate has high professional skills, but you like him less as a person, and vice versa with the second.
    What's better?
    Andrey Zaitsev: It all depends on the situation. For example, about 3 years ago I was looking for DBA under Postgres.
    I was looking for three months, in Moscow only 5 people came for interviews, and everyone wanted a huge salary. If the candidate is completely uncommunicative or has a complete disaster with FWM, then these are serious risks. As for professional skills, I do not very thoroughly test people for knowledge of specific things. Rather, I pay attention to the way of thinking. If I understand that these mental abilities are enough to solve problems, then the rest can be completed.

    I had a case: a person (he was already over 50) completed React in a couple of months, while not knowing English - he ran the documentation through Google Translate. And he did it. Of course, learning is important, but it’s not very clear how to verify this at the interview.
    I do not believe that it will be comfortable and productive for me to work with a person who does not study.
    I do not think that such a person will survive the next iteration of the transition to .NET Core.
    I do not know what to do with this person if he does not know what Docker is.
    And I also can’t imagine how he will debug his mistakes in the simplest Swarm, how he will understand what happened with his application. Over time, the company changes, and with it the tools and approaches to development, and it is impossible to fall out of this stream. And if a person does not grow in the position, then he should definitely develop in skills.

    Igor Maslov: It would not be cruel, but if in doubt, then do not take a person. At that moment when you compromise, you not only put off the search problem for later, but also increase the problems, since the possible separation is an additional complication for all parties in the future. Yes, you may be lucky and the person will be good, but the risk of the reverse is greater.
    What should an applicant ask for interviews?
    Andrei Zaitsev: When applicants ask very few questions, this is very upsetting. Either I told the person too much, or he simply has no questions. Even about salary - this is a good question. In our world, salary to some extent reflects that (this, of course, is not always the case, but) how well you do your job. And I want to understand what a person thinks about the quality of his work, how I will evaluate it, including money.
    At the same time, if they ask me a question, how would I solve the problem that I give myself, I will be very happy because I understand that a person is attentive to the opinions of other people.

    Igor Maslov: We need to ask everything that really interests a person, and not be afraid. If a person shows interest - this is wonderful! So, he certainly does not care.

    Another question that many job seekers ask is: who should take the initiative to voice the salary - the one who is looking for work, or the one who offers it?
    Andrey Zaitsev: Today, in most vacancies, especially in the field of IT, salaries are not indicated. Each company chooses a salary at its discretion. Some fundamentally reveal salaries, and such an overwhelming minority. I believe that money is a very important motivating and ranking factor. To a certain extent, the salary must correspond to skills, and it must be disclosed. I must give the candidate at least a fork for the position for which he is applying. Once, when discussing employment, a person and I discussed in advance how his salary would grow and tied it to skills growth. At that time it was more relevant for him, and I understood that he would develop in the direction needed by our team and project.

    Daria Kudryavtseva:At an in-person meeting with the candidate, in that part, when there should be a “sale” of the company / project / of this particular vacancy, I intentionally initially give the candidate a minimum of information about the vacancy. I don’t dump on him those details about which he does not ask himself. I just propose to “ask any questions about the vacancy”, without introductory remarks on my part.
    As a rule, what exactly the specialist will ask about the vacancy is very revealing:
    - someone will ask the only question - about the salary;
    - the other - it will be meticulous to learn about how the development processes are arranged, how the team interacts, from whom tasks and the like arrive;
    - the third - will focus on the opportunities for professional growth, performance review and clarify the steepness of future colleagues.
    Obviously, the motivation for each of these candidates is very different, right?

    This is an important part of the interview - to see how a person will start asking.
    In any case, I will later tell you everything important about this project, you can’t let the developer go in ignorance.

    Igor Maslov: The initiative should come from both sides, as we are looking for a balance in the issue of payment. It is rare that an employer wants to take a person as cheaply as possible: if the person is interesting, he will understand that he is not paid extra and will leave. The project on which he worked may be in a difficult situation, since the moment of departure will necessarily coincide with some important stage. On the other hand, the employee should more clearly indicate his desires so that there is no game - “guess the salary by emotions”.

    Is it worth it to go for an interview if you do not plan to get a job? Someone believes that the interview is a good platform for sharing experience: you can solve an interesting problem for yourself on a test task, try new technologies, ask the recruiters what practices they use; find out what companies are interested in in the market right now and what they need from the candidate. Isn’t it too impudent in relation to the employer: to spend his time on an interview and say: “I just came to talk, exchange experience”?
    Igor Maslov: I think this is normal. This can be seen as an opportunity to learn something new and broaden one's horizons, and also to understand what can be tightened. Someone will meet and talk with interesting people. If you go to an interesting company where worthy professionals can be, it is always useful. IT world is not very big. And just making interesting acquaintances is also good and useful.
    Maybe you won’t get an offer or you’ll say that you really are not interested because you are happy with your work. Perhaps you will be invited to some kind of meeting or other event. In general, there is nothing wrong with that. I feel normal that my guys go for interviews. You cannot fasten everyone to a chair. If someone wants, he will leave.
    We must create good conditions in ourselves, give interesting tasks, and then everyone will be happy.

    Yuri Orlov : Corman has a cool analysis of the task of hiring employees. Most likely, you will choose the right person, provided that you have a certain list of candidates, from which you will absolutely randomly invite people to each subsequent interview. The conditions of the task are that you have limited selection resources. You pass only on some candidates from this list, but you choose them absolutely by accident.
    And after some time, just choose the one who is better than all considered.

    On the one hand, this is a dry mathematical statistics. On the other hand, HR can understand with whom to compare a potential candidate. HR will better understand who is in the market. There are not many developers, but you need to train for someone. When you come to communicate, never think that you are taking someone else's time. There will still be a positive effect: they will look at you and orient themselves that there are such cool guys like you, and, probably, we need a person of this level.
    Most programmers are introverts. How much more difficult is it to communicate with them during the interview? Maybe programmers need some other approach?
    Daria Kudryavtseva: I do not agree that all programmers are introverted. It seems to me that this is a myth that is not relevant at the moment. In order to constantly improve the professional level, it is very important to have a good learning ability, to adopt and transmit knowledge. To do this, at least communicate. In order to get good products, it is important to be able to communicate in a team: understand colleagues and explain your ideas.
    And natural selection here does not work in favor of introverts.

    But even if you are a deep introvert, the task of any recruiter is to find common ground, understand motivation. It is important for the recruiter to have a clear idea of ​​what is important to you and to relate this to what the employer has. When the conversation is in this context, it does not matter whether you are an extrovert or an introvert. And then, an HR developer is definitely needed no less than an HR developer. Therefore, it is, first of all, our (recruiters) task - to find contact by any means.

    Andrey Zaitsev:I worked with real introverts. When you hire such a person, you have some idea who will come to you. You wonder if it will work out with him, or is it impossible within your team. If we are talking about junior, then their main task is to grow and learn. If junior is not ready to talk, then why is he like that to you? The task of Senior is to sell your opinion, and for this you also need to be able to talk, at least with other programmers.

    Also, I do not agree that the programmer needs a recruiter less. Finding the right place to work, where you will spend a third day or more, is a very good and right task. If you are looking for work, then you are looking for a place where they will pay you and give you interesting tasks. Otherwise, do not try. Therefore, always examine those to whom you are going. Always think about how it will work for you.
    Some go for interviews while they work, just to test themselves. And so such a man came, he was offered a job, and he refused. But after some time he quit or decided to find a better place, and again he came to interview in the same company. What do recruiters do in this case? Do they take into account a person’s assessment when he came to interview for the first time?
    Daria Kudryavtseva: Of course, in any normal company, the results of meetings are saved, including feedback from the results of a technical interview. But we are always ready to talk with a person again. I would even say that we are more pleased with such candidates than those who have come to us for the first time. This shows interest in the company - and it cannot but rejoice!

    If you weren’t taken for the first time, then there’s nothing wrong with asking when you can make a new attempt — usually at least six months. And during this time you need to pull up your knowledge and skills, and at the next interview it is better to immediately tell the recruiter and technical specialist what work you did before you come back.

    It happens that during interviews a candidate shows himself to be a qualified specialist and a sane person, and after hiring it turns out that he is not able to work in a team. How to identify an inadequate candidate?
    Igor Maslov: Unfortunately, there are no such methods. An indirect sign that a person has serious problems may be a large number of places of work where he did not stay for a long time.

    I had such a case. I took a wonderful specialist, and this was one of the best technical interviews. It so happened that we gave him a rather specific, individual task for almost the entire probationary period. He did a great job with her.
    We said that he’s done well, the trial period is over, and now we need to start communicating with people - and everything collapsed. His resume indicated several places of work in which he worked for about a year. But it turned out that somewhere for six months, and a bunch of unspecified places where he lasted no more than a month. And there was always one reason - he could not get along with people. Everywhere he tried to establish his own rules, believed that conspiracies were weaving around him.
    If there are many short-term jobs in the resume, this is suspicious. But if, on the contrary, he worked for a very long time in the same places?
    Daria Kudryavtseva: It depends on the situation. If a person has worked for 10 years in a company, but in different projects and in different roles, then everything is in order, and if he spent more than 5 years in the IT field on the same role and in the same position, then this candidate should be treated with caution. Often such “Siduns” cannot be relied on, they have no enthusiasm, they refuse to get involved in work. They need a chair, not interesting tasks.

    Igor Maslov:I want to note that, in my experience, really worthy candidates, great specialists, practically do not leave the companies. Basically, they are all satisfied, have a good salary, honor and respect within the company. It is very difficult to lure them. Unless to come and agree with them at the level of "I know him, he wants to work with me." And the rest of those who work for a long time in one place and then change jobs, yes, they belong to the category of “Siduns” who were simply asked to leave.
    What key points do recruiters pay attention to when interviewing junior developers?
    Igor Maslov: I believe that the main thing is the ability to think and translate thoughts into code, into some meaningful ideas. A developer is a person who knows how to think, this is his main purpose. The main thing is that he was ready to solve problems. The second - a person must be adequate. It is not necessary to be super sociable or the soul of the company, but you must be able to answer questions, clearly articulate your thoughts.

    On the one hand, the candidate needs to be checked for stress resistance, but how to make it so that he later comes to work?
    Daria Kudryavtseva: I occasionally hear from hiring managers an offer to conduct a stressful interview (and at the same time such a maniacal light appears in their eyes). According to my observations, such a desire is often not related to the task of evaluating a candidate; this is such a way to assert oneself.

    Interviewing - the situation itself is quite stressful. Any recruiter understands this and will not intentionally increase the degree of stress, especially at meetings with young specialists. Moreover, during the interview often unpleasant questions are asked. For example, about your weaknesses, in which, in your opinion, you need to catch up, why you have not done so far, how you evaluate yourself by such a skill on a 10-point scale. This is unpleasant when you realize that you are not super cool and rate yourself at 6. You say “Why?” And that makes it even more unpleasant.

    But still, the general background of the interview should always be positive, even if we are discussing some sensitive points. The task of the interview is to first understand the interlocutor, and then evaluate the skills and correlate them with the requirements for a specific vacancy. If you make stress, the person will not open. Therefore, it is important for those who conduct the interview to be able to establish confidential contact, and not make a person nervous.

    Andrey Zaitsev : I do not agree. I believe that a person cannot grow without stress and cannot be avoided. Therefore, some amount of stress is simply necessary. Do not try to get rid of it in your life if you are going to develop.

    It happens that during an interview a specialist speaks about development, about interesting new tasks, and when you get a job there, it turns out that the higher authorities have different plans, and they put you in support of the old code. How to avoid this?
    Igor Maslov : This cannot be avoided 100%. But you should ask about the tasks and just watch whether they tell you truthfully or not. You can ask more details, and people will get lost, because it is not always possible to quickly come up with the details of unrealistic projects.
    On the other hand, maintaining the code and developing it is also work, and you need to be professional about it. If you have enough skill and desire, you can redo everything, even in hopeless cases
    And what are the requirements for remote employees?
    Daria Kudryavtseva: In my opinion, in the case of remote employees, the following requirements: be able to build relationships, organize themselves and learn more and more.
    If the project manager and team leader are watching you in the office, then when people are left to their own devices, very many can no longer work really effectively.

    Andrey Zaitsev: Finding a remote developer is really a different task than finding a developer in the office. He must be non-conflict, have self-discipline. It is very difficult to grow such people, they either come ready, or you borrow a lot of resources and do not get the result. And in which case, remote workers need to be dismissed even faster than those full-time employees.
    How can a job seeker find a good company? Maybe you should look at the code of her products, get to know the team, see the office, workplace? Or even go out for a day, feel the atmosphere?
    Andrey Zaitsev: We need to decide what is valuable to you, and look in accordance with these criteria. People with whom you communicate should not lie to you - you can check this if you carefully listen and analyze for contradictions. I like the practice of Dodo Pizza: they invite you to work for one day. They were strongly criticized for this, they say, so they use workers for free. But for applicants, this is an interesting opportunity, a kind of sampler: you come, work, look at how others work, and you understand whether this suits you.

    Yuri Orlov:When I come for interviews, I always try to feel how strong the culture is within the company and the team. Usually you are met several times. In the first meeting, the recruiter evaluates your adequacy. Then your developer or architect tests your skills, and at this point you can take the initiative. I usually do this: as many as ask me, I ask the same amount of questions myself. A very effective approach. First of all, people are interested to know what is important for you, how different your own culture is. Half of Russian companies do not know the words coding convention. You can ask how they configured CI / CD, what they still use, what practices, what Agile is for them - I especially like to ask architects this question. So you can probe the company, understand what it can give you and what you are ready to give it.

    If then someone from the future team or the future leader participates in the interview, I highly recommend asking to introduce you to the team just in case. At a minimum, see what kind of workplace you have, with whom you will have to communicate. You can even ask them questions. After all, you, too, are looking for a comfortable refuge for yourself, just like a company is looking for a person with whom it will be comfortable to work with. And if you behave passively, then, most likely, everyone will know about you, and you will not know anything about them. And that’s it.

    How much does open source experience influence a hiring decision? Do I need to watch job profiles on GitHub?
    Andrey Zaitsev: We always find as much information about a person as possible. At his mail address you can see the resume on HeadHunter, profiles on social networks, on sites where developers gather (GitHub, Habr). If there is a source code, I will read it with pleasure, in almost any language - I will see how it is structured, whether there are “childhood diseases”, how much coding convention and so on are respected.

    Daria Kudryavtseva: Recruiters have a widely used tool that allows you to create an aggregated profile based on information from everywhere - GitHub, VKontakte, Facebook, LinkedIn. Today it is difficult to be invisible, and if you can’t find a person anywhere, this is alarming.

    Igor Maslov:This is a controversial point of view: in recent years, many have deliberately installed plug-ins so that they are not monitored by various systems, because this is an interference with privacy. And, if someone thinks that the more you learn about all aspects of a candidate’s life, the better, then others think that information about how a person posts pictures from anonymous boards and drinks beer with friends in a bar is personal, not related to work and qualifications. My opinion: it’s great if you can see how the applicant participates in the open source movement, see his real code, how he works, discusses pull requests. And watching photos from social networks is uninteresting and useless. If he goes to work sober and follows the dress code (read, dresses), then everything is already fine. You can’t get into your personal life.

    How to refuse a person after an interview so that he not only does not take offense, but also advises your company to a friend? What formulations to choose?
    Daria Kudryavtseva: I can share the practice of evaluating the experience of candidates, which was very well received. We with the guys who conduct technical interviews on a specific profile (for example, for mobile developers) prepared a list of literature and general tips, where we offer to learn, to return to us in a year and join the team. For those who did not pass the technical interview, we sent such recommendations along with the refusal. It has always been positively received. Any recruiter knows that the IT world is very small, and this person will definitely come back. Therefore, you keep in mind that you need to refuse positively in order to want to return.

    Andrey Zaitsev:An example is a bit from a different area, but about specificity and objectivity: in Agile, feedback is given in the course of a retrospective, because then a person understands that you are not personally dissatisfied with him, but try to improve the situation, give a response as part of a certain process. This is called developmental feedback.

    Igor Maslov: I agree, you need to tell the applicant how he can improve his skills and knowledge. And at a technical interview it’s normal to point out any errors.
    Tell us about your “ideal structure” for the interview.
    Andrey Zaitsev: 30 minutes I ask a person about his experience and 30 minutes I talk about the project. I always leave a little time for questions. And I warn you in advance what we will talk about. This is not very convenient, because I often at some point understand that the person is not interesting to me and the offer will not, but you need to play the whole program. In such cases, I try to reduce it, but at the very beginning I consider it important to give a general plan.

    Igor Maslov: I try to formalize the interview like this. First I ask the person a little about him, then we solve problems, and in the end I talk about the company. The last stage: I either stretch if I understand that a person is very interesting to me, or shorten if a person has shown himself not well enough.

    Daria Kudryavtseva:We use this practice: even if the hiring manager in the second minute understands that the applicant is not at all suitable, you need to devote at least half an hour to an interview. Why not immediately interrupt the conversation and not waste time? Because otherwise it can ruin the company's reputation in the market. Of course, there are candidates who themselves realize that they are not suitable, and normally perceive the early completion of the meeting - then you can finish the interview earlier.
    Can you talk about incidents at interviews?
    Daria Kudryavtseva: I had a young lady hiring a manager who was very fond of psychology. And she asked projective questions: “If you were a bird, which one”, and the like is not the best version of the questions, especially for developers. One candidate that I really liked answered this question: “A bird that does not work in your company,” got up and left. It caused me sincere respect, and I had to talk with this hiring manager to reconsider her approach to the conversation with future employees.

    How soon should you tell the applicant that he is not suitable for the position, and how much explain the reasons? After all, the most unpleasant thing in finding a job is when you are either completely not answered or refused without explanation.
    Daria Kudryavtseva: This is the main and rather frequent complaint from the candidates. Absolutely all companies and recruiters are sinful. To give a detailed failure, you need to spend a lot of time and effort. Therefore, a lot depends on how the company decided to give feedback on technical interviews. If there is an understandable checklist with points for each technology, then for a recruiter this is a very good clue. We have a list of topics discussed during the technical interview, there are metrics on which issues there were subsidence, and we can list this in the refusals. And it is very difficult to get a detailed answer each time from an employee who conducted a technical interview, if this is not built in a systematic manner.

    Igor Maslov:I am responsible for technical interviews, and I believe that a clear and detailed answer should be part of the interview process. At the same time, you need to give it quickly, otherwise the quality decreases.

    Andrey Zaitsev: When a technical specialist gives a detailed answer, recruiters can change their practice. If you are in-person interviewing people, do not be lazy to give feedback, please.
    Is it permissible to prompt a person at a technical interview?
    Daria Kudryavtseva: This is often connected with the personality of a technical interviewer. There are people who like to demonstrate their level at the interview: "I'm so cool, now I will prove it to you." I try to prevent such people from being interviewed, because this is a very big risk for the company.

    Igor Maslov:It is impossible to assert oneself. For example, in some companies this is decided as follows: there is a list of questions, and at interviews you can ask people only within this list. And during the interviews, different employees assign the candidate their decision - to hire / not to hire. If by the majority of votes a person is hired, and he works well, then they analyze why someone asked him not to hire, and if necessary explain to the interviewees what they might be wrong: for example, the candidate solved the problem correctly, but the employee did not figure it out and gave a negative decision. In this case, you can still improve the interview process relatively objectively.

    Try to make sure that there is not a lot of tyranny and voluntarism, so that you can understand where your weaknesses are, to work on mistakes. As far as I see, many companies pay little attention to this.

    Also popular now: