5 business ideas what to use coding tests for, besides IT recruitment

März 10, 2016

When you hear coding tests, I’m sure, IT recruitment process springs to your mind. But our business cases show much greater variety of online programming tests usage and application. Thanks to flexibility of our system, programming assessment at DevSkiller can be used to meet various company’s objectives, not only in recruiting tech talents. Just see for yourself.

Of course, coding tests are still great for recruitment. Find out how in Der ultimative Leitfaden für das technische Interview.

1. Coding tests as a tool to streamline IT Recruitment

Programming assessment is widely used in IT recruitment world. Although coding tests mainly support technical recruiters in a screening stage, using right programming tests streamlines whole recruitment process and brings positive effects on all other recruiting phases.

Some companies use coding tests as the first method of screening – they invite all applicants to solve a coding test and depending on their result they continue recruitment process. Such an approach lets you assess and filter candidates based on programming skills and their ability to solve programming challenges and not on resume, so far experience or certificates they have. That approach is a much more accurate method of assessment. It also brings other positive results such as eg. decrease number of unnecessary interviews by up to 40%, increase number of quality candidates that get to technical interview with IT team and faster time-to-hire which proves to be crucial in IT recruitment.

Coding tests can be also used during technical interview with your IT team. Instead of white board coding, the candidate can be given a programming task to solve during or just before the interview, and then discuss the solution they submitted.

If you would like to know more about streamlining IT recruitment process with coding tests just have a look at eBook “Hack process of recruiting Programmers [with Case Study]

2. Coding tests as an educational method used in programming courses and trainings (on site and online)

Programming is a very practical skill. In developer’s world it doesn’t matter how much you know, what matters is what you can do in practice, whether you can use your knowledge and skills to solve programming problems in an efficient and effective way. Coding tests can be a great teaching tool. On the one hand you can use it to show how to apply things you are teaching, and on the other they can serve as a great way to verify whether course participants learnt the things they were supposed to. Based on the score achieved in coding test you can grant them Diploma certificate.

At DevSkiller we let you add your own online programming tests so that you can structure it in a way that it reflects your programming course and training.

3. Coding tests as a way to verify programming skills of IT contractors

It often happens in IT projects that you have to operate within very tight deadlines and you are suffering from shortage of programmers. That’s when temporary outside help is needed and IT contractors come in. You can contract tech talents through IT staffing agency, IT outsourcing companies (eg. IBM, Atos, Accenture) or look for them on your own through portals such as UpWork oder Guru (if remote programmers is a solution you take into account). No matter which method you choose, still your CTO or Senior IT programmer have to verify IT contractors’ skills ‘cause resume, so far experience or certificates don’t guarantee that the programmer will do the job you are hiring them for. Weird enough, often IT contractors’ agency doesn’t take responsibility for quality of such programmers, they just pass to you leads and it’s up to you to verify whether they match your needs. Again, if you are looking for additional programmers, it means that you’re pretty busy so you don’t have much time to evaluate IT contractors skills.

That’s where our coding tests can help. At DevSkiller we let you prepare your own programming test which can be based on your company’s code and thus imitate perfectly IT ecosystem that the programmer will work in. Thus you can verify whether IT contractor is up to certain task you are hiring them for.

Apart from giving them real life programming task to solve, you can also verify their coding skills with code review challenge.

4. Coding tests as a way to verify employee’s growth and development

Another interesting usage of coding tests is to evaluate employee’s growth. The results a programmer achieved contributes to their overall evaluation and serves as an input to career development.

5. Coding contests and challenges as an alternative way to use coding tests

Companies turn to programming contests for various reasons. It can be a recruitment challenge, an employer branding opportunity or a way to crowdsource a programming problem.

As a recruitment challenge – it allows you to test a great deal of programmers at once or within a really short period (eg. 24 hours) and pick up the candidates that get the best score, invite them to interviews and offer a job. Some candidates find it very motivating to participate in such a challenge and see how they score compared to top coders.

Coding contests can be used also for crowdsourcing purposes. If you are looking for a creative solution to your programming challenge, that might be a way to do it. However, you should be pretty careful because such an initiative requires a lot of branding and PR attention in order to lead the crowd in the right direction and keep the right level of their motivation. You want the participants to be appreciated and not to feel misused.

DevSkiller unique features that support usage of coding tests in various business ideas

The vast usage and various applications of coding tests at DevSkiller is due to the flexibility of our system that we offer. Following features of our system are crucial:

a) You can test not only skills and knowledge of programming languages, but also certain frameworks and libraries

which is much better indicator how the programmer will perform in your programming ecosystem. If a developer is familiar with frameworks and libraries then they can use it like puzzles to make what they need and write code only where it is necessary. By doing it this way their work becomes much more efficient.

b) You can build your own coding tests in which you are able to use your company’s codebase.

Your custom coding test will imitate perfectly IT ecosystem that the programmer will work in at your company. We’ve made our system flexible, so you can implement not one page of your code, but a whole system using frameworks and libraries that the candidate will use while working for you. It’s kind of imitating what we call 1st day at work experience for candidates during their assessment. In that case you can verify whether programmer is up to certain task you are hiring them for.

c) Programming is about solving coding problems in natural coding environment.

We are strong advocates of open book exams and creating such an environment during assessment so that it resembles real life coding challenges (eg. we allow programmers to use IDE so that they solve coding assessment in comfortable for them environment). Only then you will see how the candidate can help you achieve your company’s and programming goals. We are strongly against using algorithmic tasks in assessment as they don’t serve as a proof of candidate’s programming skills.

d) Code review as a way to asses programmers skills to work with code and in IT team.

Apart from giving real life programming task to solve, you can also verify their programmers’ coding skills with code review challenge. It will help you evaluate candidate’s familiarity of design patterns and coding practices, which is essential for keeping the code clean while working in teams.

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