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Interview pains

April 21, 2012

I’d been interviewing candidates for a few jobs and it has been a painful process so far.

We’ve interviewed about 25 people in the last 2 months for a senior role without any success. Most of them are below average, and so we decided average is good. Extended offer to one guy who declined. We made sure another other guy is interested before we gave him the offer. He assured us that he is absolutely interested in the product, company, technologies etc., and told us he can join immediately. So we did give him an offer. On the day he was supposed to join he was a no-show, and wouldn’t pick up the phone.

I started interviewing for some junior positions and thought maybe we’d have some better luck there. Here is my experience with a couple of candidates.

Interview 1:

  • Me: “Can you tell me about your role in the current project that your are working on”
  • Candidate A: “XYZ company does ABC, and I am working on…..”
  • Me: “Hang on. Is this project listed in your resume (resume shows some other company and project)”
  • Candidate A: “Yes mam….” and at this point the phone phone gets disconnected.

I tried calling him back, but doesn’t pick up anymore. Obviously it was a resume with fake experience, and the guy didn’t even care to prepare based on what he has in his resume. He probably has a few versions of resumes’ and the poor guy couldn’t keep track of which went where.

Update: I realized later on that it may be an entirely different person attending the interview and not the guy who needed the job. So much for my naiveté.

Interview 2 (need some software background to understand this):

  • Me: Have you used any version control systems?
  • Candidate 2: I did blah…blah…blah… (nothing relevant to the question above)
  • Me: My question is whether you’ve used any version control or source control systems such as CVS, SVN, Visual source safe etc..(listed all the version control systems that I could think of to see if he’d come across any of those words)
  • Candidate 2: No mam..I haven’t worked on those.
  • Me: What kind of build/deployment processes do you use?
  • Candidate 2: blah blah…(again not relevant to my question)
  • Me: (Trying to rephrase my question) After you develop your code, how does it get pushed into the production server. What kind of processes do you or your company follow?
  • Candidate 3: After I develop my code, I check into…hmm…its called CSV…and then someone else gets it and deploy from CSV…(eventually I gathered that he was talking about CVS which is a version control system..and at this point I was ready to pull my hair.).

Today was the last straw. We scheduled 4 personal interviews, all of which are no-shows. All of them except one didn’t even have the courtesy to call and cancel the interviews. What can we do to change the system and instill some ethics into people?

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