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Contractor Interviews and Testing?

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    #11
    A first week is always a probation period in fact. No needs to test.

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      #12
      Originally posted by t0bytoo View Post
      I've seen two types of tests: good ones and bad ones.

      Good ones involved sitting down with an exercise that reasonably reflects the type of work I'd expect to do. Usually quite fun to do as an exercise.

      Bad ones come in the form of some lazy instructions and/or irrelevant computer science related algorithms that I usually don't understand and never bother doing.

      The tests are to help the client know a bit about how you work and - importantly - for you to get a sense of how the client works. If the test is nonsense, the work will be nonsense - walk away!. If the test is interesting and followed up by a discussion about implementation, scalability, etc, that's useful.

      I don't think that anything created in a test has any commercial value, so I wouldn't worry about that.
      Fizz buzz

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        #13
        Best gigs - ones secured via friendly chat.
        Crap gigs - one involving multiple interviews and/or tests.
        Rhyddid i lofnod psychocandy!!!!

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          #14
          Originally posted by FK1 View Post
          A first week is always a probation period in fact. No needs to test.
          Rubbish. What about all the time and effort taken finding/interviewing/onboarding to meet timelines? You get someone in without proper diligence and bin them a week later puts the project back and costs money.

          Granted a poorly done tech test isn't a good way to find the right candidate but just trialing expensive contractors for a week isn't the way to go either.
          'CUK forum personality of 2011 - Winner - Yes really!!!!

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            #15
            Originally posted by northernladuk View Post
            Rubbish. What about all the time and effort taken finding/interviewing/onboarding to meet timelines? You get someone in without proper diligence and bin them a week later puts the project back and costs money.

            Granted a poorly done tech test isn't a good way to find the right candidate but just trialing expensive contractors for a week isn't the way to go either.
            The first week is always a probation period in fact. Nobody trusts you because of interview stage tests and nobody will pay you until you deliver working things.

            Real life working tasks take days. 1-2 hours tests just check interview skills and nothing more.
            In the context of a contract for services it is a non-sense. In the context of a senior level specialist with a working history it is a disgrace.

            Any fear of fake could be treated with a few minutes on the Companies House web-site. Like a credit check.

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              #16
              Words fail me.
              'CUK forum personality of 2011 - Winner - Yes really!!!!

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                #17
                Originally posted by northernladuk View Post
                Words fail me.
                ummmmm................... yeh
                Entropy is NOT what it used to be.
                Inertia, however........................

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                  #18
                  Any feedback on what types of interview to expect depending on role?

                  Surely analysis/architecture/management and other senior roles rely more on scenario based questions than crappy technical tests about syntax and other bollox that are often just memory tests not competence tests.

                  Reason for asking is I'm considering moving up the chain now I'm 'senior' so can rely on my experience rather than memory and not constantly having to learn the latest crappy frameworks or tools the code monkeys love tangling with. Much easier to sit in meetings/workshops and knock up a few documents/presentations where the hardest task is avoiding eating too much cake.
                  Maybe tomorrow, I'll want to settle down. Until tomorrow, I'll just keep moving on.

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                    #19
                    Yeah, dead easy - until you're in charge of a £10m budget and people's livelihoods.
                    For example - "Here's a 300 page ITT for an outsourcing deal. How do we make a profit on it and undercut our competition. You have three days to come up with a costed proposal..."

                    Successful senior architects and similar don't get paid good money for talking, they have to deliver difficult and often complicated solutions aginst demanding constraints. If it was easy, everyone would do it.
                    Blog? What blog...?

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                      #20
                      Originally posted by malvolio View Post
                      Yeah, dead easy - until you're in charge of a £10m budget and people's livelihoods.
                      For example - "Here's a 300 page ITT for an outsourcing deal. How do we make a profit on it and undercut our competition. You have three days to come up with a costed proposal..."

                      Successful senior architects and similar don't get paid good money for talking, they have to deliver difficult and often complicated solutions aginst demanding constraints. If it was easy, everyone would do it.

                      Fair point, but how do chancers get weeded out at interview for such roles?

                      I'd expect if the CV is relatively honest then those asked for interview will have relevant experience and will be able to do the job, so it's down to the agency/recruiter checking the facts accurately to not put inappropriate candidates forward in the first place.

                      Just need to know one's limits and seek out appropriate opportunities then convince the client/employer you can do what's going to be asked. How the client/employer goes about that task is where the interesting differences in approach lie that I and others are probably interested to hear for future interviews.
                      Maybe tomorrow, I'll want to settle down. Until tomorrow, I'll just keep moving on.

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