The truth is most people are afraid when it comes to hiring developers. They are afraid that though you come across as a competent person when they talk to you and your C.V. looks great, you may not actually be able to do the job – you are not good at problem-solving, you cannot code.

A few example of technical tests that are common are technical quizzes, technical conversation interviews, take home coding challenges and whiteboard challenges. There a few tips we will share for each of these as we get into them a bit more.

Usually, a document is given to a developer that has the problem and the expected outcome. They develop their code and return it for review. Most times, but not always, the review goes through the code with them. It is important to note that the discussion regarding the code may be as important as the actual code.

Pro Tip: The most important thing to think about when accepting a take-home challenge is the time factor. Make sure the following aspects are clear: Examples of some challenges are Geektastic’s unique coding challenges which you can use for practice.

What time you should hand in the challenge

When you will be able to complete the task, this might be especially challenging if you have a full schedule

How long you think it will take to complete it, and here you need to assume as you probably are that you are grossly underestimating the time it will take

If these times do not add up do not be afraid to go back and negotiate the allocated time. It is certainly better than failing the challenge which you probably will if you do not have enough time.

Pro Tip: The idea of the whiteboard strikes fear into the heart of many interviewees. The challenges can range from practical problems related to the job to completely abstract puzzles or practical problems not related to the job.

In a technical conversational interview, the interviewer attempts to gauge your technical knowledge by using a conversation to draw out what you know. For example, they may ask,  I see you have done Y with technology Z, would you do the same or differently now if you could make the decision again? And wait to see the extent of your knowledge on technology Z and its competitors. They are a cross between a classic interview and technical test since they are trying to get more than just knowledge out of you.

Pro Tip: The stereotypical old-fashioned interviewers who grill you and puts pressure on you to put you through your paces are increasingly fading away. This is due to the high level of competition for good developers. Usually, interviewers are attempting to build a good rapport with you to give you a positive view of their company as they gain the information they want from you. This is why interviewers ask questions that give you an opportunity to show off and enjoy yourself as they extract information. For example when they ask about what achievements you are most proud of they hope to gain information on your strengths but also giving you a chance to relive the good moment makes you light up.

If they ask you to explain to them about a technology that you have had a lot of experience with and they have not yet, they are most probably hoping that you demonstrate your technical ability and communication skills while giving you an opportunity to shine talking about something you are familiar with. This builds a good rapport and you feel genuinely proud of the position they have put you in to teach them about something.

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