4 Ways to Verify Developers’ Skills for a Job Interview | TechWell

4 Ways to Verify Developers’ Skills for a Job Interview

Job candidate looking at code on a computer screen, photo by Fatos Bytyqi

Developers often struggle to convey their skills effectively during a job interview, making it difficult to assess their capability. But you want assurance that a candidate who has an impressive CV actually has the practical abilities you need. Here are four ways of verifying developer applicants’ skills.

1. Examine their portfolio

Any skilled developer will have a software or programming portfolio, even junior developers. Through a portfolio, they can showcase a variety of skills, including those gained while coding personal projects.

Portfolios could range from something basic, such as a single-page website with a list of their recent projects, to a complex software package. During the interview, ask detailed questions about the projects in their portfolio to verify that the projects listed are theirs.

2. Review their GitHub account

GitHub is one of the most valuable resources when recruiting a developer. GitHub is essentially an online showroom where developers work on open source projects and make contributions to other assignments. A developer who owns a Github account demonstrates that they can write clear and concise code that other people not only understand but can actively contribute to.

You can verify a developer’s skills by checking the number of followers they have, which can be an indication of how effective their reputation is; the date they joined GitHub, which can show their level of experience; relevant key search terms that relate to the specific technologies they use; and the number of repositories they have and their activity.

3. Ask about Stack Overflow

Stack Overflow is a question-and-answer platform that specializes in programming. Using this website, a developer can submit or answer a question on anything programming-related, and as they do they receive badges and points for their contributions and help. By evaluating their Stack Overflow profiles, you can see a job applicant’s reputation among other programmers and get an idea of how willing they are to work with others.

4. Conduct a Live Coding Exercise

A live coding exercise can be a valuable and crucial source of information. It communicates the candidate’s way of working, their approach to the project, and their ability to create code under pressure. You can carry out a live coding exercise through screen sharing or in person. (It’s also a nice practice to make the exercise a paid one, so the developer isn’t wasting their time, even if the exercise will just take a few minutes.)

Take the time to review job candidates’ online footprints before scheduling an interview with them. Then use at least one method to verify their practical abilities. It can reveal a lot about a developer and their skills, and it will help you find a good fit for your team.

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