Welcome to the first interview
I’m Euan, the CTO of Verrency. My job is to find amazing talented people, bring them together to become part of an awesome team, and then set the technical direction for our company and make sure we build out a product to delight our customers and end-users.
The first part of my job is the hardest; Finding good tech talent is really hard.
Some people are great at coding, and really don’t like interviews, and don’t shine in the room. Others are great at the interview, but turn out to be rubbish at the coding. Some amazing devs are really thoughtful, and need to take a couple of minutes to formulate an answer, but it would be the best answer ever if people would just wait. And some people are great at coding, if you tell them exactly what to do and how to solve the problem, but can’t learn on their own.
The other challenge is that we use a series of awesome technologies, but they aren’t all as widely used as we think they should be. This means lots of people don’t actually have the skills we hope for, and we want to test that quickly.
Our stack, for those interested; Clojure, on a Cassandra Database, with GraphQL as an interface standard, and Kafka for streaming and event publishing. We do everything in AWS, and have a massive investment in automation. Everything is currently orchestrated in Circle CI, with Git, Cloud-formation, Docker, Artifactory rounding out the CI/CD stack. We also have a CT regime using a custom tool set, but are in the process of migrating that to a commercial offering and throwing Chaos Monkey into the mix too.
So going back to interviewing, there are a couple of options; Ask you to come in and write us a BuzzFizz solver, or ask you some esoteric point on Graph QL to see what that line “has some experience” really meant. But we appreciate that talent can’t all be interviewed the same way, so we’ve decided to shake up the process, and start with the “technical proof” rather than end with it, which seems to be so common;
For Tech Jobs at Verrency there is no email to send your resume to. We don’t use “Apply Now” buttons on job sites. Instead we have “The First Interview”.
THE FIRST INTERVIEW
In your own time, taking as long as you need (we’ll never know how long it took), use the endpoint below to submit your resume to us.
It’s in GraphQL. You don’t have to have experience with GraphQL to apply for a role with us, but if you don’t have that in your toolbox right now it will be the first thing you need to learn, so start now. It’s not that hard, and there are some great primers around (links below).
It will take your resume in plain text, but a link to a private GitHub page works too, and a couple of other details.
And that’s it. If you are experienced with GraphQL, it’ll take about 5 minutes. If you’re not, we think it will take an hour or so. You’ll have to go and read a little, use some new tools, and test to make sure it works. But if you’re like us, that’s probably going to be fun anyway.
We recommend finding a nice GraphQL client. We use graphicql-ui https://github.com/faazshift/graphiql-ui but you can use any other that you may like.
Once you have the GraphQL API Explorer, you want to use the apply mutation to send us your contact details, and a text only version of your resume.
THE REST OF THE PROCESS
Everyone who passes the first interview by successfully submitting their resume will get a call from me, the CTO. I’ll reach out via email to arrange a time. You invested your time to submit, so you get some of mine, even if it’s just to have an actual human explain that you’re not the right fit.
Assuming that call goes well, there will be an in-face meeting over coffee with myself and one or two of the team. I’m told our interviews our pretty unconventional, but enjoyable conversations; We won’t be trying to trip you up with obscure logic questions, or asking you to explain the use of the optional send variable in the AtomicBoolean function (there isn’t one, and even if there was we wouldn’t ask, because we don’t use Java).
Depending on the role we might ask you to debug some code, or explain how you’d solve a problem. And expect lots of questions about you, the sort of culture you’re looking for, and the things you are proud of having achieved. We tend to make decisions pretty quickly, so we won’t string you along for weeks.
A couple of other things; We’re open to all our team having their own side projects, and can structure hours flexibly around that. Several team work 3-4 days a week, to have time for other businesses, and that’s fine. Most of the team are working parents, with mundane responsibilities like school drop offs, which means hours are flexible, and we’ll be happy to work through that in the interviews too.
Good luck, and hopefully we’ll speak soon.
WE ARE CURRENTLY HIRING
You know how lots of people say job hunting is about who you know? Throw in that people have to be looking and hiring at the same time, and it’s amazing we can ever find the great people we do. So lets fix both of those problems.
We are currently recruiting for;
Senior Clojure Developer
Automation Test Analyst
And in the coming months we will also be recruiting for;
Dev Ops Engineer (CI)
Rather than advertising, and recruiting to a time frame, we would much rather start talking to people long before we have a need and then keep in touch with some good people. That way when we do have a need we can call people we’ve already met, and liked, and see if we can work together. Even if we don’t have the right role, we know some other great companies and are always happy to recommend good people.
If you know someone who’d be great for one of those roles, then tell them to come and introduce themselves. That way we’ll know each other too.