26 May 2014

How looks typical experience of looking for job for junior software developer (Based on my example)

WARNINGS:
This is NOT a professional advice.
It based on personal experience only and resources read on internet.
It will contains lots of grammar mistakes.
Drink double espresso and energy drink as article is long and boring.
IT is still a work in progress. Please feel free to contact me with any corrections, requests or suggestions.





ARE YOU LOOKING FOR JOB?

GOOD LUCK!
This is my loose reflection about how looks this process in 2013/2014

As it is long blog entry.I decided to split into few entries
Table of content:
  1. Introduction
  2. I looking for
  3. Preparation
  4. HOW TO WRITE A GOOD CV?
  5. How to write good Cover letter?
  6. Do I need LinkedIn?
  7. How to write good CV?
  8. Company's job specification
  9. Recruiters
  10. PHONE INTERVIEW
  11. Homework (Tests, Task ,etc.)
  12. FACE TO FACE INTERVIEW
  13. TESTS,TASK,QUIZZES on INTERVIEW
  14. Troubleshooting
  15. WHAT TO DO ,IF YOU GET 2 AND MORE OFFERS. (which one ,I should chose?)
  16. Conclusion
  17. Links with useful stuff.
  18. (Bonus) Recruiter wars .Dom vs Recruiters.
  19. Useful resources to read
INTRODUCTION:
Unfortunately, I needed change a job as I wanted to move to different city,where my wife had job already .As you can see, it is not most epic story.

This blog entry is about experience about looking  for job in IT sectors with various information about what is good to do ,what works for me what did not and why.I will try to write many bullet points in summary.





I LOOKING FOR ...
It is most important question.
What do you want to do?
Always start from this question... Seriously.
Describe what you would like to do and write it down.
It took me a bit of time to think about and this is how I described:
I am junior software developer .I like Java,Spring framework,Play framework and I want follow this route.It will  be perfect,if I will have chance gain some experience with security and UX design.
It will be help you focus on finding right job.

  • Answer on question: "What do you want to do?"

PREPARATION 

Before you start,

You need to do a tiny preparation.
It is good idea to have special e-mail and another mobile,so your primary mobile/email will be not spammed from recruiters and websites about jobs after you found it. Even,if you remove yourself from websites and unsubscribed from recruiters 'databases',you will be still spammed(up to 6 months in my case). Do research about salary depends on your experience/location and be REALISTIC about it. Write your CV and template for cover letters.Organise your work using  to-do or get things done applications .
  • Do NOT use your primary e-mail ! Create a new e-mail or use your current spam account.
  • Do NOT use your primary mobile! Buy prepaid Sim .Reason are the same as above.
  • Motivate yourself (do self-brainstorm of yourself to make sure,that you believe, that you can find new job.
  • Think about what you want to do. If is your first job.I suggest look for graduate job*.
  • Do market research about salary in city for role with your skill set . 
  • Create draft  CV ,Cover letter, and create LinkedIn account(optional) .
  • Use Get Things Done or to-do list as approach to handle all process and make sure that you limit amount of cases.



*Graduate job is type of job that is design to  hiring students who are about to graduate from schools , universities or look for experience.If during study university allows you to do "sandwich year" ,DO IT!


HOW TO WRITE A GOOD CV?



Good template for CV varies depends on country and type of job.

I suggest do quick research about it.
If you live in UK .Follow UK or EU CV's style.

What to remember:


  •  In opening statement, you need sale yourself as  somebody said : "The most effective way we can increase our value is to market ourselves"(I forgot who wrote that :(  ). Write who you are  and what you looks for.
  •  Do not use 'CV dialect' given by recruiters and agencies! You should allow recruiters to  check your CV and allow them to do changes ,but ask them to see this CV,before they send to company.(Remove CV dialect and skills that you don't have!).
  • GRAMMAR - second most important! Any grammar mistakes will reduce your chance significantly .
  • LAYOUT -  Formatting is important as person,who check your CV in company has 2 minutes and if they cannot find what they looking for due your mistakes in layout decrease your chance.
  • Link skills with achievements and experience.
  • Use bullet points for skills.
  • Add hobbies and bit of personality to your CV. Most recruiters told me that I shouldn't do it and most people who likes my CV said,that it was due I added these things,so hobby is good way to shows your personality.
  • If your English is rubbish (my English is rubbish as you probably noticed already) ,then you can give to professional CV writers BUT give to person who knows your industry (Has real experience with IT) or you make thing much worse!
  • Designer and other creative jobs should have portfolio website.Software developer should have github account.
  • If you put CV online then  add skills that you are good at or you want use in your next job .Otherwise recruiters will spam with weird job (For example I mentioned that i have experience with extjs ,so recruiters send me offer for Sencha Developer (because "Sencha Touch Developers tend to have worked with Ext.js, a skill listed in your CV. Because of it’s a rare skill, I ran a broader search of our database to capture developers that may have worked with ext.js that have since moved on into Sencha Touch. "



How to write good Cover letter?

I don't know how to write great cover letters  as I wrote few of them and all was rubbish.



However,I learnt that: 

  1. Introduction (what you are apply for,where you found info about job  ) 
  2. who you are and what skills you have
  3. link your skills with experience and match this requirements written in job specification
  4. explain why above skills are good for company (mention good news about company found in news or etc.) 
  5.  Thank you paragraph (where you said thank you for time spent on read another boring CV

Cover letter should be extension to your bullet points in CV targeted directly to company that you apply for:




Cover letter should be split into 5 parts (mentioned above) 

  • They are very similar rules to CV .(Marketing yourself,  GRAMMAR ,  Formatting  and Linking skills with achievements)
  • Write template of your cover letter  (As 3 parts of cover letters are almost always the same.Main different in part about why you choose company and what you know about company.It will saves you plenty of time later
  • Do not copy and paste cover letters as it is a chance that you will copy stuff,which you don't want(like other company name) as if you make this mistake ,then ...GAME OVER. (I have done that twice  :( )



WHERE TO LOOK ?



There are  few ways to look for job this days:
  1. Friends (best option)
  2. Companies website (specially,your dream companies )
  3. Job hunting Website ( specially offer by company ,not recruitment agency.
  4. job centre plus (in UK,or national job agency in your country) are useless for professional jobs.It is good place for despaired people.However ,it can be good place  free advice,if you needed.
  5. LinkedIn is a great source  to gathering information about company and possibility to find which company recruiting at the moment ,but speaking of LinkedIn.


Do I need LinkedIn ?



It is a optional thing. LinkedIn sounds like great idea,but ...

 It is worth to have, because:
  • Due lack of alternatives .LinkedIn is a only option for social network for professional (although Google+  can be offer better user experience,but it is not designed for professional social network.
  • It is good source to gain intelligence about company and people ,who will interviewing you.
  • It is good extension to your CV
However.
In general.I have very bad and annoying experience. 
  • LinkedIn will constantly spamming you to upgrade account premium.
  • Don't be surprised to receive/send many empty invitation or messages from many people. This is due poor design by LinkedIn. You can found many blog entries complaining about this.
  • It is very unpleasant to use on daily basics.However linkedIn i create/update profile in 
  • No ability to block recruiters .
  • It has Phirshing issues. If you install on Android application, it will stole your contact and spam you with add these people to LinkedIn and etc.


Remember:
  • Do NOT add recruiters ,head hunters and other spammers. They will pollute your account with lots of useless job offer that in 99% is irrelevant to you.They will call and send email to you anyway.
For example:
Copy of email 6 Dec 2013 19:39:18 :


Hi Dominik,I hope all is well.I have a permanent London based role for a leading Music company who work with household names including Sony Playstation and Samsung. They are seeking an Android Developer to develop a new music service for mobiles and tablets.The company are interviewing over the next couple of weeks, and the process is only one interview so could move very quickly. If this could potentially be of interest please email me your latest CV and we can discuss further.Regards,


Copy of LinkedIn: (10.12'2013 at 17.25)
Hi dominik, <-- my name from small letter :)I hope all is well.I have permanent roles available for a growing software vendor who are seeking multiple Java/Scala Developers to work on a range of greenfield projects. All teams are Agile with a focus on TDD & BDD, the company are also embracing big data technologies.The company can offer a competitive package along with excellent career progression. I appreciate you are probably not actively looking for new opportunities at the moment, but if this could potentially be of interest please let me know and I'll send through further details.Thanks,

You will receive spam as
"Hi Dominik,  I hope you're well. I'm currently looking for a Java Developer for an exciting new role based in XXX. Do you know anyone in your network who may be open to a move at the moment? We pay £100 in vouchers for refferals who are successfully placed."


In may cases i receive call,e-mail and linkedIn message.

Conclusion:

  • It is not mandatory ,so if you can DON'T use LinkedIn.
  • If your job require constant contact with other people ,then LinkedIn is very useful.
  • Do NOT add recruiters ,head hunters and other spammers. They will pollute your account with lots of useless job offer that in 99% is irrelevant to you.They will call and send email to you anyway.
  • LinkedIn is very  valuable for company research (gathering information about company that you want work for and for job hunting) .
  • Using LinkedIn can be pain in the ass as you cannot block recruiters and annoying poor user experience design.


COMPANY'S JOB SPECIFICATION


When you know what you want to do and you wrote your CV and create website/ account on LinkedIn / portfolio ,then it is right time to look for job.

One of the most important is to clear understanding of Job specification. It is very important,because you need understand your role,so during process you can show your skills that match required criteria.
Bad news is that many Job specification are very blurry or they are 'censored' by recruiters.
In case ,if this happen to you ,then I suggest ask few questions to clarify job specification before your apply.
This is my selection of question,which I asked :
  • What is required a certain level of experience for these skills? It is good to know what skills are essential, optional or nice to have. 
  • What is proper job title and what is about  ? It is not important,but it can give you more less clue about role  .It is bit tricky as for example I looked for Junior Java Developer role and for me there are different between software developer,engineer and architect ,while for many people is blurry or synonym .
  • Is for Graduate/Junior/Medium/Senior Role? It is very important question to ask,but you must know your skills first. How to determine  0-1 Graduate , 1-4 Junior 5-9 Mid, 10+ senior. Many recruiters said  " If you see Senior role but recruiter said,that you should apply . In all cases, recruiters lies.
  • Do they have specific certification , education and any other requirements before I am even considered? It is good to know or you will waster your time.
  • How looks specific responsibilities expected of a my role?
  • What are main duties?  
  • I would like to know more details to evaluate is role is interesting for me or not.
  • How flexible is this role (can I do various position over time) and how the role could develop?  
  • What methodology are they using?  Everybody said these days that they are ... AGILE ,but ... what they mean by that can be completely different things, so if you see agile ,then ask for details (specially recruiters)  
  • How big team is?  
  • Is it work in team ,alone, mixed?
  • What about company itself?
  • How big it is? How looks company culture and working style? It is important question if you care about work
  • Is work is only at company's premises?
  • Is it required travelling ?  company itself
  • Might they even be able to work from home when possible?
  • What personality they look for? -  Depends on what you looking for.For me is important with 
  • When they expect a successful candidate start to work? - If company looks for somebody NOW and don't want wait 1 month, then usually indicate poor management, HR or job itself. I ,by default ignore all jobs.
  • How looks recruitment process?
  • How many stages ?
  • What types (phone interview?test? etc. ? )  It is important to ask as it will help you prepare correctly to interview and avoid  after-interview depression and crying  to friends "I didn't expect that it will be test on interview". 
  • (Optional)  Salary range? 
Companies usually response very well and provides all necessary information. Answers from recruiters vary. Some of them  gives you what you want but don't be surprise if answer have no f...ing clue what they talking about. If this happen ,then ask again or give up.Believe me you will save a lot time.

For example :
What methodology are they using? - Agile
Problem is that everybody are Agile except everybody define Agile ... in different way as ... 

How big team is? - Very big,but I don't know numbers.
In fact,it was only 10 people .. 

  • Ask these question and request answer on e-mail (these information is good to remember during recruitment process and for other purposes) .If recruiters wrote stuff like " I’m extremely busy at the moment also so I understand, but I’ll be able to answer these questions after 6. " it usually means "fuck off,I don't bother to answer on these question  or because I don't know answers and cannot makes answer blurry like over phone".In 4/5 cases I didn't get any answer.


RECRUITERS



I went through around 150-200 calls with recruiters and  ...my conclusion is  one. Recruiters are nightmare to deal with in
They make looking for job much more difficult.
  • 5% of them are useful.
  • 20% OK'ish
  • 15%  So-so.
  • 60% Rest of them are pain in the ass.



My expectation from recruiters was:
  • I told them ,what I want and they want and what I don't want and they will contact me when opportunity appears.
  • They will guide me through process
  • Helps me  improve my CV, cover letter.
  • Gives me useful tips and resources about company before interview .
  • Be friendly and professional.
I knew,that I was bit naive with my expectations ,but .. hollycrap, I didn't expect that dealing with recruiters will be like swimming in septic tank.
Why? In most cases talking with them It is like talking about colours with blind person.They helpfulness in find job looks like finding needle in the haystack at night without light when you are completely drunk.


If you decide to use 'recruiters' as way to find job,then:
Start form learn how to detect is recruiters has brain or it is just  another shithead:
Shithead is "A complete dumbass; a genuine moron. Someone who has committed an act in which causes harm or temporary discomfort to another."  .  Source: http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=shithead).

Usually, Professional recruiters ask about stuff from CV,where Shitheads usually ask questions to fill form like they never seen CV,but not always.

It always starts from 'generic ' conversation .

Try to be friendly for them.Positive first impression will increase your chance Shows your strong interest.
Remember as well,that you can't blame a screwdriver for not being a hammer. They are recruiters not software developers ,so they may not know details,but they must know basics about technology and what they are for . 

Always asked them to send 'role opportunity' to your e-mail,where you can scan job's specification .If job specification does not answer all question from my list above ,then ask recruiter to answer these question. If recruiter's answer is "I don't know" (or they answer  means "I don't know" but they using nice wording ),then ask for clarification (or ask them to ask company to answer these questions).
If recruiters doesn't want do that (by answering that he is busy or it doesn't have time as deadline is coming  very very soon and he need act fast,then ...From my experience , I have one suggestion.
Say thank you, withdraw from  representation  and don't carry with this person ever as it means recruiters is lazy and useless and you unluckily will be successful,so you will saves your time.

How I proved , that recruiters cheats  about these things  (sometimes)?
Usually,easiest way is to  check  company's (that you are apply for) website to see ,is they  display "deadline" for role (or send e-mail).
It is usually easier change recruiters,  that go through  hell .Believe me.(Keep in mind ,there are few (sometimes it looks like few hundred) recruiters usually ) ).

However! It is not always recruiter fault. I must 'honestly' admit,I had one case,where I suspect that recruiter's looks crap for me and I was about to give up,but then I spotted that company was responded for serious of troubles(company didn't want phone screening,just interview).I was wonder,is this kind of troubles means that working culture in company(or at least IT team) is bad(or even crap),so I went for interview and I was right.It was most gloomy interview in my life.I felt in this place like 
 I spoke to few people about my results and ... we agreed that weird problems before interview(lack of interest in pre-interview communication) usually indicate bad place to work.
 decided  and in the end and recruiter was very good.When  



I usually avoid pick-up calls from unknown/private calls.It is not rule,but most rude/annoying recruiters
  • No numbers,means i cannot call back (i cannot add to useful contact or banned),so i prefer banned.
I had quite few rude conversation and all of them was from unknown call:
This is one of the example (worst one):

Recruiter : I saw your CV on (website)  and I have exciting new role in company who uses agile and  cutting edge technologies  to developer software based in Manchester.Are you interested ?
Me: I am sorry,but  I wrote that I looked for job in London ONLY.
recruiter (with irritated and angry voice:  Why London? Manchester is fantastic city.F.CK OFF. (And he disconnected).

It is not a rule. Many good agents use unknown numbers too (but they usually send e-mail ,if cannot catch you on call).

If you are happy with job's spec and recruiter then you can agree to be represent by them .

Remember:
  • Always gives you some time to make decision.Specially if they trying to put pressure  on you.
  • Don't gives any details about other job (specially company name).
  • Try to make conversation over e-mail rather than phone,so you can keep track of progress and it helps you to detect
  • Keep note 

I just repeat to clear. Most of recruiters are crap,but they are quite few a good one. Quicker you learn ,how to distinguish good from bad,then more efficient looking for job will be. Unfortunately . majority are shitheads,so I am not surprise to see this kind of things on company's websites: http://uk.moo.com/about/recruiters.html
On bottom ,I will shows few example of ..

Conclusions:
  • IF YOU CAN AVOID FINDING JOB THROUGH RECRUITERS .. DON'T USE THEM. In most cases.You will save lots of hassle. (Except case ,when you company using recruiter agency exclusively for recruitment).
  • DO NOT ALLOW RECRUITERS MAKE ANY DECISION. ALWAYS TAKE SOME TIME TO MAKE IMPORTANT AND  DECISION 
  • Do NOT add recruiters  to LinkedIn. Many of them are just  lazy spammers will flood you with jobs that in most cases are not relevant to your target.
  • Don't forgot to be nice and friendly to them in first contact and always sounds friendly. First impression is important as it will Better relation with recruiter you have ,then whole process quicker and friendly.
  • If they gives any material about company or tips. Check it out!  
  • Do not answer unknown/private calls as it is hard to track who calls to you. Almost all worst recruiters called from unknown/private calls.
  • Always be nice to them at first as they are human! It makes all experience much better. 
  • Many recruiters will use lots of psychological tricks against you. Most of them based on build pressure around you to force you to makes decision.Always gives yourself 24-48 hours to makes decision. 
  • If you find out that recruiters have no clue what he talking about it,then don't carry on.
  • If you feel that you have autism while you talking to recruiters ,then .. don't worry.
  • Do not say what you are interesting or not,because they will spam you with all jobs anyway.
  • Verify what recruiter said. ALWAYS. specially about of location/public transport .
  • Do not give any information about other jobs.NEVER.
  • Write down answer on common questions as most of them ask question looks like copied from internet as ..they are copied.(It applies to phone interview too).
  • If you are unhappy with recruiter remember to write email that you are withdraw from being represent by specific .Be assertive 


PHONE INTERVIEW



I hate talk over phone. It is most annoying way of communication for me.
This is a reason,why it was big challenge for me to have phone interview.

Phone interview usually takes 20-75 minutes,so plan each for 90 minutes


What is worth to remember:
  1. Company has very limited amount of time to read your CV,so don't feel offended,if they ask question about things that was stated in your CV.Actually is better for You, if they ask again as you can add all bunch of minor experience that  relevant for position that You are apply for,but you omitted in your CV.
  2. If English or language that You will be using on interview is not native one then I suggest ... a bit of practice with answering on typical questions and practice name of common technologies . 
  3. Practice pronunciation (I still remember my embarrassment during interview with Dan H.(from Adaptivist)  a friendly interviewer ,who didn't disconnect after my few attempts to pronounce "Atlassian" :)
  4. FIND a very QUIET place to talk.(I actually have done one interview in noisy Costa coffee and my interview ended in 2 minutes!).
  5. FIND place,where is a  good range coverage.
  6. Don't do few phone interview one after another(do around 45 minutes break). Make sure,that you have time for break,extra time to avoid call from other company,while you are still on phone with other interview

From my point of view Phone interview helps to find out chemistry between you and people. It helps you gives figure out is Company looks for people as you or not. For example Travel Corp. rejected me as I don't have experience with working in corporation.It can be sad,but it saved my and company time.

Conclusions:
  • FIND Quite place to talk
  • It must in place ,when you have GOOD phone range!
  • practice PRONUNCIATION... before  interview (to avid embarrassment) .
  • THINK,before you answer! After question, think about question and then  answer.
  • when you talk about skills REMEMBER to  match with experience and vice versa. 
  • Do not laugh, if somebody has funny accent or behave weirdly.
  • Have a bottle of still mineral water with you.
  • Don't argue but say why u gave this answer .for example garbage collection is a
  • Don't do few phones interview one after another .
(Phone screening)


If you have limited amount of time for face to face  interviews,then I suggest ask for phone interview or phone screening.
Why? It gives you final answers about is role (and place) is suitable for you or not .If you use 

What question for ask? everything what u want and to know what company (In my cases ,it was ask question from COMPANY'S JOB SPECIFICATION section , plus I asked details about working in IT .
I discover that Some companies refuses phone screening due various reasons. If they said  that they have strict recruitment process and they cannot change (typical for corporations),then it sounds reasonable,but if they don't want because .. they don't want ,then it may indicate bad 'company culture'. (To be honest, I even went for one interview to confirm my theory and .. I was right).I guess,it is not always a case,but it works for me.


Bad companies usually refuses to do it.
Companies with good team sense are usually very happy to do it.

Conclusions:

  • If you have limited time or travel to company for interviews can be a hassle,then Phone Screening is a good technique to ensure,that you apply for job that you want.
  • Ask question from COMPANY'S JOB SPECIFICATION section.
  • If company refuses phone screening  because ... because,then it may indicate bad place to work.


Homework (Tests, Task ,etc.)


Quite often in IT sector, you will ask to do:
  • on-line test
  • off-line task

Some companies doing on-line tests for check your knowledge and it is pointless as most of them are  copied and pasted from internet (I had few interviews,where questions was  the same and it very similar ...order). After quick research I found few websites,that provide questions about it).Maybe they check how quick you can find answer on StackOverflow.com)? Easy to pass,usually.



Good news is that tasks are more interesting to do. Specially ,if you like smooth programming.
They are usually easy. Why? They are
However,  make sure that you doing 1/day if you r work or 3/day on day off or you are not work.
Why? If you will have many tests over and over again then you will more tired you are focus on finish task rather than finish refactor and polish.


if You just graduated , you need make sure that your learn and practice following basics:
  • Know all funky stuff about Java (read many tricky question about Java ) or your main language
  • If you struggle with reasonable Code style follow well known open source projects code style like this: (for example here: http://svn.apache.org/viewvc/commons/proper/lang/trunk/), 
  • Design Pattern (Head First book is the best for start or Gang of Four if you are orthodox programmer;) ) 
  • TDD (Good way to practice and learn testing with JUnit.).
  • Knows basics command in Windows and Linux.(I

What is  important:

  • Code should be simple (many companies upload some code on github,so ..that's give you perfect place to find they "code style"
  • Should use right solution for task .For example do not use list,where map is better(i like using lists and made this mistake) or don't use bubble sort for sorting (I have done it too ;) )
  • Project should have a reasonable structure  
  • Code must be formatted
  • method should self-explanatory  by their name.
  • create Readme.txt to explain how to run code.
  • Prepare 'template' for new projects
and as  there is lots of randomises in what person who check your code likes . there are only two things which you should do:
  1. check is company has any open source project on GitHub , BitBucket and etc. if yes,download and follow it.
  2. ask for what you should focus on and ask how looks they code style

Your process should look more less like that:
  • Prepare Energy drink,coffees,beers or other beverages .Prepare some snacks .(energy bar or breakfast bar are the best)
  • Read question.
  • If you don't understand anything.Ask for clarification.
  • Quick design your application
  • Design structure of application
  • Write tests that will answer questions and tasks.
  • Write program that passes all  tests.
  • Double check
  • write read me how to run program
  • check is your instruction in read me works.
  • Send it.

Conclusion

  • Limit numbers of test per day.(1 is good,but no more than 2 per day)
  • Read question few times.If you don't understand anything,ask for clarification.
  • Prepare your process (my process is above,but treat this as example not something that you should follow blindly) and follow it.
  • Make code simple,well formatted, sensible structured.
  • Don't be surprised, if 2 companies will have opposite opinion about your code. always ask politely for feedback.
  • Always upload your result even if you think rubbish.Always add  comment,if you believe that something should be improved
  • if You find any company's source code, follow their code style.


FACE TO FACE INTERVIEW


It is most important part.
 Always. 
This is time,where you can sell yourself and prove your value.

Do research about company and read latest news.
(Good recruiters gives you information about company and latest news).

Gather information about interviewers from LinkedIn and use these information on interview.

If person, who do interview with you is :

  • Questions by developer are technical and your answer should be .. technical as well. Some developers like ask tricky question,so make sure that you read articles about common tricky questions.
  •  Question by business analyst,product owner (non technical people) will ask about  your skills to deliver solution and explain them in understandable way(for normal human) . If you never had contact with this kind of person ,I suggest practice. (It was problem in  my case, I failed badly my interview with this kind of person as  my experience with business analyst was bit unusual as it was technical guy and he was very direct ,so I never heard 'Manager slang' ,so after I failed I spent some time on figure out how to answer on this type of question.Unfortunately  I lost questions asked by this kind of people.  
Always remember these question and try to prepare answer for them,so it will makes future interviews go smoothly.(You will quickly collect set of common questions)
For example:

  • What you will do,if you won big money on lottery ?



If you have chance ,try to ask them about various things to figure out,is company offer you a job that meet your requirements and it will make you happy to work there. (Question from Job's specification + questions about working in IT + how company is growing)

If you like surprise them ask questions like:
  • How your company is doing despite global crisis?



If you still working and your interview is in the different city,then i discover that:

  1.  Try to have 2-3 interviews in one day,but have a plenty time between them as my one of my 45 minutes interview took  140 minutes|
  2.  If face to face interview is a first  contact with company . I suggest to have small chat before( phone screening) to make sure that this company is what you looking for and they think that you sounds like right person.
  3.  Buy Power pack to your mobile as you will discover how battery can disappear on that day!
  4. Do not think too much before Interview.
  5. be on-time!
Summary:
  • be on-time!
  • be relax (but don't use drugs or alcohol
  • THINK,before you answer! After question, think about question and then  answer.
  • RELAX. It is not good idea to  looks like you have epilepsy.I understand your excitement and determination,but behave as you met your colleague on official meeting not like teenager girl who saw Justin Binliner( Bieder or something like that).
  • Have answers ready for common question

TESTS,TASK,QUIZZES on INTERVIEW



It usually  most tricky part of the recruitment process.
Key to success is to be open minded , have fun and be as creative as you can be.
I didn't have too many experience with these part,so you will not find too much here.

I had one test on interview and I screwed up badly as I didn't read with understanding ,so make sure you read question slowly and if you have any doubts ask for clarification. It was my fault,but it teaches me few valuable things.

What you can expect:

'University Exam ' ,they check your theory knowledge.Start from question which you are able to answer and then back to question that are difficult or you have no clue. If you don't know answer but you have 'feeling' .Express these feeling as Interviewer may guide you to correct answer.


TASKS:
Be creative and improvise if necessary .
Remember about team work.
That's all,what I know.As you can see ,not too much.


Remember:
  • Read carefully and with understanding. (If you don't understand or you are not sure.ALWAYS ASK FOR CLARIFICATION
  •  Take breath,Think about question,'design' answer  and do it.
  •  Smile and treat this as conversation with business mate 
  • Never give up ,fight to the end. Answer as best as you can and if you are not sure .. write this down anyway (and explain why you are not sure)
  •  Always try teamwork approach 
  •  Link your answer with your experience from work ,assignments and etc.



COMMON TROUBLESHOOTING WITH INTERVIEWS


What to do ,when you have a blind mind?

It happen to everybody .. what to do,when you get too stressed and your mind go blind?I suggest take deep breath .If you struggle, go to toilet and relax, but don't go to toilet every 3 minutes.


I don't know answer on question.What should I do?


It happens.However,before gave up ,try:
If you don't understand  question, clarify!  Ask for hint,if you are not sure.

If it is problem solving question.
Give yourself 10-30 second to think and then answer.
If you have some ideas but you are not sure.. say them anyway and explain what you trying to achieve.


Always fight to the end.If you don't know, you can admit that,BUT again.If you had any thoughts mention them..interviewer can help you if can believe that your thoughts can be correct.

How to relax before interview?
Everybody has own way to relax. Smoking ,etc. (Don't drink alcohol ,don't take drugs,just don't). Don't think about interview.Treat this as simple to do task on that day and focus on plan after that .(shopping, challenge your self with extreme exercise etc.
Different people using different techniques to relax and it is topic for book and I am not expert.

What I do to ?
  • I  do not think about it at all.I treat going to interview as going to shop for milk.Come,Screw up and Go.
  • Think about future. I think about what else i need to do (like planning holiday with wife, new feature for my game

How to deal with sadness after rejection?

I will be honest! Shit happens. Don't care about.
Simply. It doesn't matter is it or not your fault.
It will be almost always a valuable experience that will pay off in future.
Don't think "if I will not make this mistake then .." as if you didn't make that mistake you could always make worse mistake, so whatever you learnt from this ,it will help you in future to find better job.

WHAT TO DO ,IF YOU GET 2 AND MORE OFFERS. (which one ,I should chose?)

WELL DONE!

First and most important.  YOU and only YOU should makes your decision.
Second . Give yourself 24-48 hours to make decision.
Third . If you apply using recruiters. Say to them that you need 24-48 hours and nothing else.DON'T LISTEN THEM ! They want you to chose their company because  they earn money from that ,not because specific company is better for you . They will use psychological tricks to made you mind.YOU MUST MADE THIS DECISION.Don't allow them to mess with  you brain!

If You are  lucky, just follow your 'sixth sense',otherwise... there are many ways to make decision.You should google it and find one that it will support your decision making process. My way is :

  1. Write down your requirements (Must have ,Should have. all other minor requirement).
  2. I write down  all advantages/disadvantages of each company
  3. Give them priority (how this advantage/disadvantage is important) 
  4. Create score system and compare
  5. Go to sleep,
  6. Make decision. 
There are many many things to consider (not only):
Team,Management,Location ,House,overtime pay, holidays, flexibility of holidays and work


Reminder! This is my way of making decision.There are many way to make decision like:

  • using sixth sense
  • luck
  • using dice 
  • write script
  • etc.

Summary

  • DO NOT LISTEN RECRUITERS!
  • If You are  lucky, just follow your 'sixth sense',otherwise... try to write down all advantages/disadvantages compare and make decisions. 
  • Give yourself 24-48 hours.


CONGRATULATIONS!



CONCLUSIONS

That's all! Good luck to you!
I know is hard.It is very painful,if you need deal with recru
My aim was to find interesting job

It took me 2 months to learn all these things,before I actually seriously start looking for job.

My biggest..

  • .. success was to find interesting job
  • .. achievement was that,I constantly follow my plan 
  • .. problem was dealing with recruiters and they waste 85% of my time.
  • .. disappointment was LinkedIn as I hope,it will be my social network
One more thing .

How well my approach works for me?
It works very well..
I made few mistakes,but it works very well.

Few misc. bullets point :
  • If you move house remember:
    • http://www.channel4.com/4homes/buy-sell/selling-property/moving-house/moving-house-advice-and-checklists-08-06-26
    • http://www.movinghouse.com.au/moving_home_checklist

  • Respect your previous work.
  • Good luck!
And ... in the end:
Dear TheBookPeople  and Procserve THANK YOU!





THE BEST OF: Fine selection of my problems with recruiters.


It is like talk to blind person about colours. I have no idea,why they ask questions about what you looking for as they seems to not care.

I always said : I am junior software developer .I like Java,Spring framework,Play framework and I want follow this route.It will  be perfect,if I will have chance gain some experience with security and UX design. In my free time I like do android development. I look for job in London ONLY.I am NOT interesting in  roles Android Developer and I don't work for banks and games companies.
but I still get e-mails like:

"Hi Dominik, 

Your experience looks excellent for a couple of Android Development opportunities I currently have open with London based clients. Are you currently open to discussing new opportunities? 

Best regards, 
T."



You can say that you are looking for job IN LONDON ONLY,but you will get:

--- London only ---


Hi Dominik,



I just tried to call regarding a Java Developer role I am recruiting for at present. This role is based in Chippenham which is about 80 miles West of London. Would that be of interest?
Kind regards,
J.



--- Spam opportunity --

"Please ignore this e-mail if you do not match the requirements for this role."

I think ,it is called a SPAM.

---- How big team is? Is it work in team ,alone, mixed?

"It will be working in a team. Not too sure of the size. There may be times where you are working alone."

---
Experience in Oracle
Recruiter - Do you have experience with Oracle?
Me- Sorry,what?
Recruiter - Do you have experience with Oracle?
Me-It is American company, do you mean Java?Database? VM? which product/solution do you ask ? 
Recruiter - I don't know.
Me - You don't know.. wow,that's great. anyway .. let's say that I have an experience in Oracle ..next question ,please..


---
Worst recruiter eve.


Make story short.
I always  explain,that I can do interviews on Monday or Friday,but I need a week notice in advance to book and as I live in Wales and i need book off for specific day and come to London.(This person asked me where I stay in London.I said in Wembley)
She asked me this question twice, but still trying book me on "next day".
When I receive this e-mail:

Hi Dom,

They have 3 interviews already booked for Monday so this won’t be possible.

Can you do tomorrow or Friday at all?

 S.

When I sent (bit rude) e-mail (where  used capital letter to highlight where i live ,how much notice i need and etc..

Hi Dominik,

Please understand that I deal with a number of people each day. I had notes saying you had a presence in Wembley.

If you require 1 weeks notice for an interview simply let me know a selection of days and times that you can do a face to face and I can get confirmation from them as soon as possible.

Regards
S.

(*sigh*)

-----------

Useful articles to read

  1. https://www.facebook.com/notes/facebook-engineering/get-that-job-at-facebook/10150964382448920
  2. http://steve-yegge.blogspot.co.uk/2008/03/get-that-job-at-google.html
  3. http://qz.com/267471/five-errors-that-immediately-get-your-resume-rejected-at-google/