Interviewing for an IT Job

A few months ago one of my clients asked me to help him interview candidates for an IT help desk position.

He had several candidates lined up. The HR department forwarded their resumes so I could pick the more qualified candidates for an in-person interview.

As you can imagine, some of the resumes were poorly written, full of spelling errors and weird formatting with all sorts of fonts and layouts.

Right there you can tell if the candidate took the time to create the best representation of his/her skills and qualifications.

After carefully reading all the resumes, I narrowed down the candidates that met most of the requirements for the IT position and called them for an in-person interview.

As someone who has been working in the tech industry for more than twenty years, I have been through numerous job interviews, on both sides of the table.

As a job candidate, I always strived to understand the company I was being interviewed for. I tried my best to demonstrate to the interviewer what my strengths were and what I could do to contribute to that company and/or team.

As a hiring manager, my approach was holistic: the resume, although a very important aspect in understanding the technical qualifications of the candidate, was not the deciding factor when calling a candidate for an interview. I always liked to have that face to face meeting because first and foremost I wanted to understand if the candidate’s personality matched my team’s and second I always liked to understand the candidate’s potential and motivations rather than looking only at his or her technical knowledge.

Don’t get me wrong. I do think the candidate’s technical knowledge is important, but what that person can be taught or developed into is what I value the most.

For example, if I am looking for a database administrator, it is great when I find someone who has been working as a DBA for a number of years; however what I often found were hard-core DBAs who would not even consider working on anything other than databases, such as programming.

On the other hand, sometimes I find mid-level DBASs who are driven and motivated to try out new things, work on new technologies and take on new challenges.

Now, back to the interview, what drives me insane, are two things:

  • Lack of motivation
  • An unprepared candidate

Let me explain…

I’ve interviewed candidates who had absolutely no motivation whatsoever to go through an interview. Once I interviewed a very knowledgeable gentleman who had been out of work for more than six months. Technically he was very good; however he did not seem excited about anything. I tried talking about hobbies, sports, gadgets, etc. The response was clear. He’d either given it up or he was not interested at all.

Other times, I’ve interviewed candidates who had good skills on their resumes; however they could not answer simple questions during a troubleshooting scenario, such as how to ping a device.

Then I came to a realization:

What if I could write a series of posts that might help someone looking for a job in IT. This person could either have just finished his or her degree in Computer Sciences or be looking to start interviewing for a job in the IT field.

So, in the next weeks I am going to start publishing posts that should help you through the preparation and interview process for an IT job.

Do you want to join me? Just sign up and I will let you know when new posts are published. They will be free.

BTW I hate spammers, so be assured that I will not share, sell or spam your email.

Cheers!

Fabio.

 

Index of Related Posts:
1. Interviewing for an IT Job
2. What You Need to Know When Interviewing For a Job in IT
3. What to Expect When Going Through the Technical Interview
4. What You Should Know about Headhunters and Recruiters
5. Tips for Networking Success
6. 5 Tips for Successful Webcam Interviews
7. The Basics of Troubleshooting – Part 1 – Ping
8. The Basics of Troubleshooting – Part 2 – Traceroute
9. The Basics of Troubleshooting – Part 3 – Firewalls
10. The Basics of Troubleshooting – Part 4 – NAT
11. The Basics of Troubleshooting – Part 5 – PAT
12. The Basics of Troubleshooting – Part 6 – 1:1 NAT
13. The Basics of Troubleshooting – Part 7 – Port Forwarding

1 Comment

  1. Your two posts in regards to interviewing have been great! Thanks for taking the time to share your knowledge – I have definitely benefited.

    Reply

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