Getting an Interview
Getting an Interview
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Lead Software Engineer Interview
I interviewed through a staffing agency. The process took 1 week - interviewed at InComm in August 2009.
I got a call from a recruiter within a day of posting my resume on Dice. He arranged for a phone screen with the HR Manager, and it was just a simple call of what I want, blah, blah....
The next day I had a tech phone screen with the hiring manager, and it lasted about 20 minutes. Most of those questions were basic Java and OO, and I could answer all of them!
That Friday, I was called in to their office in midtown (Atlanta) for a series of in-person interviews. First with the hiring manager. He was friendly and it went on for about 40 minutes. The topics were J2EE, Spring, Hibernate, Struts, Oracle, etc. It was of increasingly complex, and I pretty much could answer all of them again. This was the best part of the interview. This guy was really nice.
From here on, everything went downhill. The interview with the Director was nothing but getting a consultant to freely help them to solve their pressing issues on hand. This guy was new, and on the job for just a few months and wanted solutions to revamp the build/integration environment. Most of the questions were about build automation, Hudson, JUnit execution as part of build, Maven, etc. He asked me to present the system in place in my current place of work! I felt like offering consulting services for free!!!
Then I had to hang out with the HR guy since the VP was busy. Note that I took time-off from work for this scheduled onsite interview! The HR guy tells me after 30 minutes that the VP can't make it for the interview, so he takes me back to the Director. He says that rest of the team would make the hiring decision!
The Director continues with the same set of build/test automation questions for another 30 minutes! He asked me repeatedly if I could improve their process.
I left their office, with some doubts in my mind about the company based on the interview experience. Guess what? I got a call on Monday from the HR guy that the VP wants to interview me, and if I can come to their office. I was not so keen to take time-off again, but he promised to have a meeting at 9AM in the morning, so I can return to work shortly after that. At this point, he said that it would be more of a formal, and started discussing about salaries, etc. In hindsight, was that a bait to bring me for the in-person interview?
The interview with VP lasted about 30 minutes, and all questions were about how to manage junior developers, getting status reports, getting work out of them, dealing with poor performers, etc. I was interviewing for a Lead Software Engineer, and questions exclusively on this topic didn't impress me!
When I left their office, I was thinking if I should really work for them. Well, I never heard back from them, but I didn't bother to ask them either. In a nutshell, unless you are desperate and/or unemployed, you have better options in Atlanta and rest of the country!
- How to manage junior developers, getting status reports, getting work out of them, dealing with poor performers, etc. I was interviewing for a Lead Software Engineer, and questions exclusively on this topic didn't impress me! Answer Question
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