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Skipping Traditional Recruitment, Going Straight To the Source 207

theodp writes "Out of necessity, reports Slate, tech startups are changing the way workers are screened and hired. Take database technology startup RethinkDB, whose old-school recruiting effort — job boards, external recruiters — yielded hundreds of resumes, dozens of phone screens, and numerous four-hour meetings with viable candidates, but no one who fit their criteria. 'They [recruiters] can't tell the difference between the competent ones and the stars,' complained Y Combinator's Paul Graham. Instead, the RethinkDB founders turned to sites like and to pick up six people (they're still looking), a mix of full-timers and interns, both senior and junior. 'You can see the code being written and how technically accurate they are,' explained RethinkDB's Michael Glukhovsky."
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Skipping Traditional Recruitment, Going Straight To the Source

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  • by Toon Moene ( 883988 ) on Saturday August 28, 2010 @07:31AM (#33402194) Homepage

    ... We (the GNU Compiler Collection) have a policy about this for our mailing lists:

    "Recruiting postings, including recruiting for GCC or other free software jobs, are not permitted on this list, or on any of the other GCC mailing lists."

    We can't (and won't, of course) prohibit you to contact individual developers personally. Note, however, that most are already employed.

  • Like many others I have my resume on my website and it gets a fair amount of traffic. Not a month goes by where some headhunter makes it past the gmail spam filter to tell me that they've read my resume and they want to offer me $JOB_I_AM_NOT_QUALIFIED_FOR_BY_ANY_STRETCH. External recruiters are worse than worthless... but then, so are most HR employees.

  • by Jah-Wren Ryel ( 80510 ) on Saturday August 28, 2010 @08:20AM (#33402316)

    In a previous job I once got change control approval to clad my entire building in two foot thick lead to prevent ram parity errors.The fools were too dumb to know what they were approving.

    Sounds like ISO9000 retardation. There appears to be an unshakable belief infecting more and more companies that process fixes everything. That process can fully encapsulate knowledge so as long as you follow the process, everything will work out perfectly.

    In the real world process is primarily for stupid people because smart people already know to do the right thing. Of course that's kind of a circular definition of 'smart' but the real world is messy like that.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 28, 2010 @08:21AM (#33402322)

    We force job agencies to run candidates through 3rd party assessments (usually Brainbench or Codility) before sending them to us. This is the only way to reduce the amount of crappy candidates they dump on us.

  • by drinkypoo ( 153816 ) <> on Saturday August 28, 2010 @10:22AM (#33402908) Homepage Journal

    For the most part, if you limit your search to open-source contributors, you are skewing your results toward single people, mostly men, who may or may not have any social skills outside work, and leaving behind a great many well-adjusted people with well-balanced lives, who are equally great coders.

    I think it's natural to want to hire people who have coding deep in their DNA, who enjoy programming in their free time, just as if I were to be hiring a gardener I would want to hire one who had some plants of their own.

    Not to mention that according to most people in the Agile industry, the idea of the "rockstar developer" has been dead for about 2 years.

    To most rockstar developers, Agile is probably just another stupid buzzword. So I guess the feeling is mutual.

  • by Idbar ( 1034346 ) on Saturday August 28, 2010 @10:49AM (#33403102)
    Well, that works well if you only want a code-monkey. There's people out there that apply to jobs different than coding, people with PhD that should do research and their qualifications are supposedly higher and specialized to sit them to write code.

"What the scientists have in their briefcases is terrifying." -- Nikita Khrushchev