Preparing to interview a lead and senior developer?

Before planning your interview with a senior developer, it makes sense to review the process you follow when interviewing regular software developers. You’ll need to decide whether your standard approach to the interview is the right approach, or whether you need to adapt it. Are your standard questions or tasks still relevant? Or do you need to replace certain questions or tasks with more suitable ones?

Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Make sure senior developers are interviewed by someone as advanced as they are
  • We do not recommend algorithm tests, so if you decide to ask seniors to take a coding test, make sure the test allows for more creative solutions or involves advanced debugging that only a senior developer could do
  • Consider paired programming interviews to get a feeling of what it’s like to work with this person, as well as ask them to talk through their approach and explain why they made certain choices
  • How do they feel about mentoring less senior developers? More junior developers are often attracted to companies that facilitate learning i.e. from mentors. Does your candidate see themselves as a mentor? Have they ever done that before?

If you haven’t done so already, this is a great opportunity to work with your developer team to create a document that details the “job ladder”, a document which clearly explains what the differences are between, for example, junior, middle, and senior levels.