The hardships of recruiting developers
Every week we take half an hour to talk just about any topic that crossed our minds during the last days and create a podcast for you (Listen to it in Spanish here and subscribe to our feed). We call it an Open Mic Podcast as we want to invite different people to participate, new ideas to take form and to shed light on various experiences and perspectives on business development.
Today’s topic is about growing our team: How to recruit and convince new team members to join us in our endeavours to create and offer new products. For this Podcast #17 we have invited Gerard Clos, developer at Factorial. Together with Jordi Romero, Masumi Mutsuda, César Migueláñez and Bettina Gross we speak about how each found their way to itnig and how we are identifying, selecting and convincing new people from all disciplines to join us.
Gerard first heard about the project exactly to the day one year ago when Pau reached out to him by email with the subject line ‘Employee #1 in a new startup in Barcelona’. At that time, Gerard was working at another startup and after a few beers with Pau and Jordi, a mutual positive feeling and interesting technological challenges explained he decided to join Factorial as the first employee.
“In the beginning when hiring the first employees, the whole team was involved in the process.”
After asking for support of our direct network, old colleagues and friends at a certain point in time you can no longer rely on this group for finding new talent. So we had to take another approach. Now at itnig we work with a small Talent Acquisition team that collaborates directly with the team looking for a new hire to be able to combine well organized processes, a throughout selection and the technical knowledge.
How to be sure of technical knowledge?
Of course we spend a lot of our time in the interview and screening process talking about the actual work, about the topics that will be part of everyday work reality but through words alone oftentimes it is hard to judge a person’s skills. That’s why we like to use technical tests and see them as a big part in our recruitment processes — no matter the profile.
“The technical test should test what the candidate will be doing on an every day basis instead of looking for errors or possible gaps.”
The technical test is important and it is tricky to get it right. It needs a balance of difficulty — not too easy but also not to difficult making the test seem unrelated to real life problems. It’s a complex topic as a technical test can also be badly received. A candidate might even get the feeling you’re asking for free work so we try to make it very clear that this test will not be used for our work.
“Make the test so obviously unusable that this thought might not even occur. Create a parallel universe to your startup to test for skills without giving room to suspicion.”
However in the end, no matter the times you have met in person, talked over the phone or slack — as some companies might suggest — it is hard to understand another human being. We can always be wrong or change with time.
If you are curious to hear more about the topic and to hear Gerard’s full story, listen to our Podcast #17 in Spanish here: