Job hunting



  • I'm currently looking for jobs and I've heard back from a hiring manager and have been asked to send examples of my web development work.  Here's my dilemma: 99% of my web development is for internal use only.  So I really don't have a stellar list of things to show off to the public.  Should I just send a few pages of code from my internal web apps?  Screen shots + code?  Many of you perform hirings at your companies - so what is it that you guys expect/like to see?

    I appreciate the help. 



  • @ItsAllGeekToMe said:

    I'm currently looking for jobs and I've heard back from a hiring manager and have been asked to send examples of my web development work.  Here's my dilemma: 99% of my web development is for internal use only.  So I really don't have a stellar list of things to show off to the public.  Should I just send a few pages of code from my internal web apps?  Screen shots + code?  Many of you perform hirings at your companies - so what is it that you guys expect/like to see?

    I appreciate the help. 

     Thisis a common delimma with most people. The interviewer should know to expect this. For some people in web development, its much easier because it can be seen on the net. But in your case, you might not have such luck. If its for internal use only, it might be confidential information. That means that screen shots or code might be out the window, code almost for certain. I don't conduct interviews, and others may disagree with me, but if you were talking to me, I would want you to be able to describe some technical problems/difficulties that you have run into and how you solved them. Sometimes actually using new technologies isn't as important as using them effectively. So I would at least have some scenarios that you have worked on personally and describe those in detail and what you have learned from it. A lot of people hiring want to see your ability to solve problems effectively and how open you are to teaching and learning new things.



  • Not only should they expect it they should expect you to never, ever provide them with anything of the sort. Surely they don't want you passing on confidential data to the next prospective employer down the line should they hire you.

    Not only that but all work you do for a company is (c) that company as work for hire. You technically have no right to the work you did under their clock once you leave. It belongs solely to them unless you have a contract stating otherwise.

    I would explain this clearly to them that you cannot legally provide examples from previous employment, though you'd be happy to describe them in detail.

    I don't do web development, I do a lot of reporting on confidential (extremely sensitive) data though. There's no way I could take my source code to another company for show and tell. I would never, ever consider it. 




  • @medialint said:

    Not only should they expect it they should expect you to never, ever provide them with anything of the sort. Surely they don't want you passing on confidential data to the next prospective employer down the line should they hire you.

    Not only that but all work you do for a company is (c) that company as work for hire. You technically have no right to the work you did under their clock once you leave. It belongs solely to them unless you have a contract stating otherwise.

    I would explain this clearly to them that you cannot legally provide examples from previous employment, though you'd be happy to describe them in detail.

    I don't do web development, I do a lot of reporting on confidential (extremely sensitive) data though. There's no way I could take my source code to another company for show and tell. I would never, ever consider it. 


    obviously they didn't ask for work from his previous employer.  They just asked for work that he had done.
     



  • Maybe you should offer them that they name a topic and you create a small demo web application especially for them, so they can check your skills.



  • Most likely they aren't looking to see how you solved complex problems, but just to see if you're competent at first glance or not.  For example, do you use a lot of GOTOs (obviously not in web development). Do you write everything in one long, hard to read function that is 5000 lines long?  Etc.

    I ran into the same problem when I started my current job.  They didn't hire anyone without seeing code from that person, almost all of my code (and all of my object oriented code) was proprietary of a large company that would have no problems squashing me.  I had, however, written a small app that I sold to some students at my school.  I sent them that, they looked it over (although with the turn around time there was no way it was detailed at all) and I got the offer.

     If you don't have any work you've done for a family member, or friend, create a sample app tonight and send it to them.  Tell them what the app is so they don't think this is what you've been working on for the past 6 months.

     By the way, it is possible that part of the test is that you don't send previous employer code.  After all, chances are this won't be your last job and they might want to see that you're not going to go around handing out their code to someone else.

    Oh yeah, I vote against the idea of describing how you would solve the problem.  That is essentially what the interview was for, you to do a bunch of talking.  A lot of people could describe how to solve something and then really suck at writing code.  They asked for a code sample, provide them one.  If they asked for a summary of how to solve problems, then provide a summary.  When it comes to interviews, it's almost always best to do what the interviewer asks (assuming it's legal, ethical etc).



  • It might be worthwhile to just write a few small demo apps "just for fun" and keep them around just in case you need them in the future.  I'm sure that most people that read this site do at least some programming on their own time.  Usually when I hear about a framework at work that I'm not familiar with I like to cook a little something up just to get familiar with it.  A competent interviewer could probably tell a lot about your coding abilities from a single class file.

    That said, I've never heard of a recruiter asking for code before.  I have seen them ask for stuff they have no business knowing, though.  My last recruiter wanted me to send him my references.  He doesn't need to see that, only the company hiring you does, and they'll ask right before they send you the offer.  

    Short version: Spend 1-2 weeks on a small demo.  Keep the code to yourself and only send it to employers.



  • Looks like it was the hiring manager and not a recruiter who asked for it.  I assume that means someone inside the company who decides who gets the job.



  • @Outlaw Programmer said:

    That said, I've never heard of a recruiter asking for code before.  I have seen them ask for stuff they have no business knowing, though.  My last recruiter wanted me to send him my references.  He doesn't need to see that, only the company hiring you does, and they'll ask right before they send you the offer.  

    Why shouldn't recruiters ask for references?  It makes perfect sense to me.  Weed out those that aren't up to snuff and minimize the impact of sending imbeciles, incompetents, etc to actual employers and ruining your reputation. 

     



  • Whoops.  For both companies I worked out I was hired directly by the lead developer and didn't deal with HR until setting up medical benefits, etc.  Carry on!



  • thanks for all the advice everyone



  • @lpope187 said:

    @Outlaw Programmer said:

    That said, I've never heard of a recruiter asking for code before.  I have seen them ask for stuff they have no business knowing, though.  My last recruiter wanted me to send him my references.  He doesn't need to see that, only the company hiring you does, and they'll ask right before they send you the offer.  

    Why shouldn't recruiters ask for references?  It makes perfect sense to me.  Weed out those that aren't up to snuff and minimize the impact of sending imbeciles, incompetents, etc to actual employers and ruining your reputation. 

     

    most people don't want a bunch of recruiters calling their boss every day for a month to weed people out.



  • @tster said:

    @lpope187 said:

    Why shouldn't recruiters ask for references?  It makes perfect sense to me.  Weed out those that aren't up to snuff and minimize the impact of sending imbeciles, incompetents, etc to actual employers and ruining your reputation. 

    most people don't want a bunch of recruiters calling their boss every day for a month to weed people out.

    I made that mistake once. Now I don't talk to recruiters at all. They are only a few steps up from lawyers. 



  • I'm also a web developer and I've run into that problem in the past.  

    I'm thinking about doing 3 or more medium sized web based projects(I might do one larger project).  I plan to link to these projects from my personal site.  I would also include the source code.  I figure this would give future employers a chance to see my skill set.

    Maybe you could do something like my idea?


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