How to hire a good developer !

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Hiring a good developer is never easy, so here are a few hints from some of our development team.

As you can easily guess, here in the Be-Bound R&D unit, we are all working hard to provide you with the ability to connect to the internet everywhere. That is also why we are all extremely thorough in the way we hire people. We know we need people that are enthused to undertake this demanding workload for the longterm vision that we have (ahem…bringing Internet to the next 4 billion).

The first thing we look for is flexibility. Due to random parameters that may change the initial plan a good developer must be able to quickly adapt to any situation. There’s even an official term for this: Agile software development.

But the question is : How can you test this? How can you, in a half hour meeting, assess a candidate’s ability to quickly adapt to an ever changing environment?

This is something we’ve given a lot of thought to, and the solution is that we should move to another field of development to develop a test that could bring to light the adaptation skills we require from any team member. Or hire someone willing to do this. Any takers? 

Thinking even further, late at night and in incredible places, an idea eventually popped into our minds : What if we tested those extremely demanding skills by exposing the candidates to the free fall of a random shaped object thrown by a random hand move? Without warning of course. The interviewer couldn’t be responsible for this. You would have to hire an additional interviewer whose job would be to stand at the ready to spontaneously drop the object at any time during the half hour meeting. The first interviewer could not be warned (that would ruin the element of surprise). The challenge has to have a bit of shock value in order to truly gauge the developer’s ability to handle an unforeseen situation. 

However, thinking even further….(Yes we are a bunch of thinkers!), in Agile software development, the ability to quickly adapt to changing environments comes with the ability to know as early as possible how those random changes will influence the final situation.

So, here’s what to look out for while you interview your potential developer. We came to the conclusion that a developer who catches the free-falling object with their hand wouldn’t  clearly demonstrate the skills we were looking for, as a hand can quickly adjust its position in a split second. 

That is why, the final version of the test we all finally agreed on is this: the candidate in question must demonstrate that they are able to predict the final destination of a random shape object thrown with a random move of the hand and  make it land in their mouth.

Give it a try and let us know how it goes!

Gaëtan Herfray and Mohamed Kharsa.

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