Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Why Phone Interviews are not always a Good Idea

Phone interviews are great if you want a developer that's just going to sit in their little bubble, coding away. They are impartial, fair and you aren't influenced by anything woolly like appearance or first impressions.

But the problem is: the rest of the world will be.

If the developer has to go out to meet clients, these clients are going to judge the developer based on these woolly things. It has been said that you form extremely strong opinions of someone in the first 10 seconds of meeting them. So why shouldn't you form the same opinions as your customers?

By meeting an interviewee face to face you will be putting yourself in the same position as a client. If you are immediately impressed, there is a good chance your client will be too. And if you are immediately put off, chances are your customers will be.

"But I just want them to code!" I hear you cry. However, will you in a year's time? In two?

In this age of versatility and Total Business (the business equivalent of total football, where colleagues are expected to take on each other's roles) having a more rounded individual that can liaise with customers might just be the better option.

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