Posted Aug. 25, 2014 at 9:42 a.m.

ExitEvent News: Software talent isn't that hard to find

Published: 2014-08-25 09:42:36
Updated: 2014-08-25 09:42:36

(Editor's note: Blake Callens is CEO and co-founder of PencilBlue, and co-founder of the Raleigh Entrepreneurial Acceleration Lab. He's a regular contributor to ExitEvent. In this story, as part of the news partnership between WRAL TechWire and ExitEvent, he discusses the job market for software engineers and how creativity is sometimes taken out of the interview process.)

DURHAM, N.C. –Every software engineer has experienced a job interview in which he or she was forced to act more like a dictionary than a human being. There's a prevalent misconception that, in order to properly develop software, one must know all the minute details of any programming language listed in the job requirements. It's a remnant of the days when developers received their knowledge from physical manuals.

It's common for today's experienced developers to disqualify a company the second they're treated this way, and a ton of companies lose out on great prospects when creativity is taken out of the interview process.

I once sat on the phone with someone for the better part of an hour as they proceeded to ask me what different variables and functions in JavaScript and jQuery were named and what they did. Not one question had to do with my actual experience working with web technologies to meet business goals, even though this was for a leadership position at a multinational corporation.

I've many times had to listen to non-technical human resource managers stumble through “pre-qualifying” questions handed to them by a technical lead. It's obvious the interviewers could have been speaking in Star Trek technobabble, for all they knew.

The full story can be read online at ExitEvent.

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