There has been a massive increase in the demand for good technical candidates in organisations. During the recruitment process for technical jobs, interviewees are often assigned coding assessments to help recruiters gauge candidates’ knowledge of specific technical skills and programming languages. In fact, according to research conducted by the Aberdeen group, hiring managers who utilise pre-employment assessments report 36 per cent more satisfaction with their final decision compared to those that don’t.
A well-planned technical assessment can give you deep insights and feedback about a candidate’s ability to suit the job that you are hiring for. However, candidates often run for the hills when assigned a coding assessment! This is because technical assessments are often not conducted well: there is a lack of clarity in what exactly is required from the candidate.
It’s pretty damning that most programmers I talk to say they’re bad at tech interviews.
These are people I’ve seen code extensively. They’re incredibly talented!
And yet they have no confidence they could pass a coding exercise.
So who exactly are these designed for?
— Laurie (@laurieontech) March 20, 2021
Let’s look at some of the dos and don’ts for conducting a successful technical assessment and for ensuring that both candidates and interviewers have a satisfactory experience.
Inform the candidateCreate a set of review guidelines
The recruitment team must create a set of review guidelines that the evaluation team can use to assess the candidate’s submission. This will ensure that there is consistency in the way all the candidates are assessed. Evaluate for critical thinking skills rather than getting the code 100 per cent right. The planning of a structured, high-quality and relevant technical assessment is quite critical and needs to be given enough thought.
Use coding assessment platforms
Coding assessment platforms can be easily personalised to help you create an effective process and hire the best candidates for your team. These platforms enable you to assess candidates’ technical skills in an unbiased manner and evaluate their competency accurately. Moreover, many of the platforms come with built-in AI-powered live and automated proctoring, which removes any kind of administrative burden on the interviewers.
Once the completed assessment has been reviewed, ensure that the candidate is given feedback. In case a candidate is rejected, it helps the candidate understand the reason for the rejection and areas for improvement. Even if the candidates are approved and accepted for the next stage, the feedback will help them understand what their strengths are. Investing time in providing feedback to the candidate helps in elevating the overall candidate experience during the recruitment process.
Publicise the coding assessments and challenges
You could be limiting yourself by relying only on the candidates who the recruiters send across for specific openings in the organisation. Let the coding assessments/challenges that you are planning get enough eyeballs so that a large number of candidates apply, thus serving the purpose of widening the talent pool. ·
Do not conduct a general assessment
Check for relevant skills. The skill being tested for should be something that is necessary for the role. If this is not done, the candidate could have wrong expectations from the job and end up dejected later. In case the candidate has queries regarding the assessment before starting on the task, make sure you answer the candidate to his/her satisfaction. This may help the candidate better deliver what is expected and help him/her avoid making incorrect assumptions. This is also an opportunity for you to assess whether the candidate is able to ask the right questions and deliver as per expectations.
Do not conduct a technical assessment if the role does not require it
Ensure that the technical assessment is conducted only for roles that need the candidate to have the specialised skill. There are many interviews that are conducted with a technical assessment “thrown in” even if the role does not require the same. This is a waste of time for both the interviewer and the candidate.
Do not assess before speaking to the candidate
Several companies make the mistake of scheduling and conducting a technical assessment even before speaking to the candidate. This could result in the loss of a potential great employee. Get an idea of interest levels and competency match. Study the candidate and the candidate’s resume before assigning assessments.
Do not give assessments that are unreasonable
While conducting technical assessments, ensure that you assign projects or assessments that are reasonable in terms of the duration needed to complete it and the level of difficulty. The assignment should not take more than a few hours to complete and, at the same time, be a good yardstick to measure a candidate’s potential.
Keep these dos and don’ts in mind when assessing potential hires. Coding assessments are a great way to hire the best and the brightest for your organisation. They should also be conducted well so that they enhance your employer branding.
HirePro’s coding assessment platform enables you to conduct exhaustive and automated coding assessments. The platform has been built by technical managers and is used by leading technology enterprises for freshers and advanced hires. To know more, reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org
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