Simon Willison’s Weblog

7 items tagged “recruiting”


Why we use homework to recruit engineers. Ad Hoc run a remote-first team, and use detailed homework assignments as part of their interview process in place of in-person technical interview. The homework assignments are really interesting to browse through—“Containerize” for example involves building a Docker container to run a Python app with nginx a and a modern cipher suite. I’m nervous about the extra burden this places on candidates, but Ad Hoc address that: “We recognize that we’re asking folks to invest time into our process, but we feel like our homework compares favorably to extensive on-site interviews or other evaluation techniques, especially for candidates who have responsibilities outside of their work life.” # 27th May 2020, 6:04 pm


Does Facebook fly you to London when you apply for this office or are the interviews done remotely?

If they are anything like Google (which I expect they are) they will do the initial interviews remotely and then fly promising candidates to the London office (or even to California) for in-person interviews.

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What are the top five items to pique interest in developers to join a startup?

It’s all about shipping.

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Why are front end developers so high in demand at startups if front end development is relatively easier than other fields of engineering?

You’re starting with an invalid assumption. Front end development is absolutely not “easier” than other forms of engineering.

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Where can I find great Java/Scala developers in London?

There are quite a few Scala events in London—here are the ones we know about at the moment:

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What specific skills are most important in a front-end web developer and in a back-end web developer?

Understanding of web app security. If they don’t know what XSS, CSRF and clickjacking are I’d be worried.

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Algorithmic recruitment with GitHub. Matt Biddulph crawls GitHub’s social graph using JUNG (the Java Universal Network/Graph Framework), JRuby and Yahoo! BOSS to find good leads on interesting developers in specific geographic locations. # 12th February 2010, 1:17 pm