I was a Software Engineer for 7 years before becoming a Founder of a SaaS company.
I worked at product based organisations in India and saw amazing growth as the my tech teams grew pretty quickly in number.
I was taking a lot of tech interviews over Zoom/Teams and other tools. I have made a list of things that I learned over a period of 7 years.
Hope this will come in handy!
An engineer with product sense is 10x better than the one without it!
Follow this rule religiously if you are building a lean team.
Network like your hiring depends on it.
Because it does.
Your network and great cold emails are the key to hiring great people.
If you reach out to the wrong candidate profile, you will end up rejecting the candidate during the interview or candidate will reject the company after getting selected.
Note every granular detail about why you rejected someone.
Make a checklist of the above things as a part of your pre-screening.
This will filter people & save 90% of your interview time.
Save yourself from them.
People rarely lie to someone that they connect with on an emotional front.
Tell the person you interview: Your startup story + how important the position is + gravity of the loss if they do not join.
Do the below before starting interviews:
Cultural check + expectation check
Tech rounds are a waste if this goes wrong in the end.
Show how pay might be 1% lower next year, but more in the long-term.
"If it doesn't work out, I will find you a job at a great company. " Reframe the risk, remove the fear.
Nominate the right people for interviews.
Structure your rounds.
For 1-3 years of experience, test:
Each step should be a knockout.
Ex for web developers:
"How would you optimise the performance of a web page with many images & an infinite scroll."
The answer has N directions & helps you understand the horizontal knowledge of the person.
Deep-dive on a concept if needed.
Introduce yourself & tell about your work in detail. Talk about your experience/tech stack. Your brand might be unknown but the work can always be sold. Treat this as the moment to acquire talent.
"That is like asking a person giving a driving test about drifting a car."
Avoid it to screen people better.
Negative expressions during an interview can totally make the candidate lose confidence.
Candidate experience goes a long way. Even on Glassdoor or geeksforgeeks.
You will lose the right talent to say the least.
Collaboration has more impact on the candidate over screen-sharing as the latter by design does not involve pro-activeness. Interviews are a two way process.
Dictating a question on a zoom call does not tell much about you.
Keep them engaged by keeping them posted about your plans.
This combined with:
Your startup story + how important the position is + gravity of the loss if they do not join will psychologically make them a part of your team.