Tips for Facing a Selection Process

Give your best during an interview

Woman working on a computer.

Each industry has its own specifications in terms of hiring processes, and the software sector is no different. This industry is growing at an accelerated speed, always competitive and looking for new talent. However, it’s also a demanding sector that only looks for the best candidates. Read further for tips to shine during interviews.

Our selection process in Octobot

I’m a psychology student in love with the HR world, and for the last year I’ve been leading Octobot’s Talent Acquisition area. Every company follows its own selection steps and recruiting style, but in our case we prioritize having agile, friendly hiring processes in which people feel comfortable to show who they are and get to know us better. At the end of the day, it’s a mutual choice of both employee and company, so we like to face our hiring process with this mindset.

In our industry, we receive applications from candidates through our website or hiring portals such as Workifit, but the majority of the candidates come from our own hunting initiatives. This means we look for people that match our open positions and contact them directly using LinkedIn, for example.

And this is our first tip: always have your LinkedIn profile updated. The recruiting teams are always checking them out and they will contact you if they like what they see. You never know what unexpected opportunities can show up! 

Step by step

Once the interested pre-selected candidate accepts, the fun begins! First, we have a cultural interview in which a Talent Acquisition team member talks with the candidate with the goal of checking if the person matches our values and purpose. We are looking for a cultural match at this stage.

After we validate the person is a fit with our culture, we have another chat to get to know the person’s English level. In this industry, being able to communicate in English is a plus! Tip number two: study English. It’s vital for growing in this sector.

The next step is a technical interview, led by a person from the engineering team. It may be a Team Leader or any dev from the team we’re hiring for. This person will evaluate the candidate’s technical skills and experience.

Throughout this process, we ask candidates to ask questions, but also welcome inquiries. Whenever you schedule a job interview, take some time to research the company beforehand. It is important to see yourself as a part of the team and culture. If you have questions about the company, or doubts in your interview, let us know. It is proactive and compassionate – and we want to be aware.

Between the cultural and technical interviews, there’s another step for the junior dev roles. We send candidates a case so they can solve a programming problem. Based on this test, we can better understand their knowledge and dev skills. At the end of this process, we have enough information to decide if we want this person to join the team. If that’s the case, we make an offer and hope they accept it! If it’s a “yes,” they join our team and start the onboarding process.

What we evaluate in the hiring process

We always make offers to candidates that fit our culture and have the knowledge required for the position. To reach this conclusion, we strive to create an interview environment where the candidate feels comfortable enough to be themselves. We want to truly know the person and the professional, so we ask them questions about their job experience, as well as their life circumstances and personal interests.

Nervousness in an interview is common and okay – we believe in the importance of comfortability and authenticity, so we conduct our interviews with an informal approach.

At Octobot we believe in giving opportunities to fresh talent, we have a lot of interviews with junior developers. In the majority of the cases, these candidates are living their first selection processes and, despite their nervousness, we break the ice with jokes and a cozy approach so they are able to relax and present their best interview.

More tips for a successful selection process

  • As we are more digital than ever, we have many online interviews. In these cases, we always ask candidates to turn their camera on. If you are having an online job interview too, we recommend you prepare your environment so it looks professional and organized. 
  • For online or physical interviews, we expect candidates to be 100% present and focused on our conversation. It says a lot about their interest in the position.
  • The IT industry offers many opportunities to grow and develop. There’s always room for learning new things and improving yourself, so be humble in the conversation and show us that you’re open to new challenges.
  • It’s also a good idea to keep your resume updated and nearby during the conversation, don’t leave anything important out of the conversation!
  • If you’re thinking: what should I say in a job interview? Reroute your question. Ask: how can this job’s team and I work together? Research the company. Learn what they value.

When we reach out to candidates, we like to showcase what it’s like to work in Octobot and present the best experience throughout the recruiting process. In talent acquisition, this approach is called inbound recruiting, and we’re big fans! It’s all about facing every step of the selection process in such a way that candidates understand the benefits and feel welcomed, listened to, and, hopefully, engaged with our work culture. And we expect the same courtesy from our candidates as well.

If you’d like to know more about our open positions, visit our Careers page. You can also listen to my tips for recruiting processes in our podcast, the Octobot Tech Talks (in Spanish only).

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