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What can you expect from the recruitment process at Monterail?

Since the very beginning of Monterail’s operations on the market, we’ve been developing and perfecting all internal and external processes that show how we get things done.

It has never been imposed by management - it's the people who have always been a part of the company. They create processes, the way we work, and Monterail's culture. That’s why attracting, recruiting, and supporting the right talent has always been our focus and for 10 years we’ve been testing new ideas to improve our recruitment process.

Based on our research and experience a good recruitment process should be:

  • Focused on candidate’s experience and good information flow
  • Personalized and flexible
  • Short and adapted to the current reality of remote recruitment

Every one of us has been on the other side at least once - in the candidate’s shoes. And every one of us knows how it feels to wait for any information from the company after applying for a job or waiting for feedback after the interview only to get ghosted at the end.

We simply try not to make that mistake with our candidates. Obviously, it’s a human thing to sometimes forget about something or be late with information but we respect people’s time. If you’ve spent your time on our recruitment, e.g. you’ve been in an interview with us or have completed a test task, you can be 100% sure you will get the feedback within a couple of days. We also stick to the rule that we apply to every person who applied to any of our job postings.

We have created our general process flow but we don’t stick to it blindly. At every stage of the recruitment process we try to create opportunities for candidates to show their skills and knowledge.

  • We assess each candidate individually, there’s no minimum years of experience one needs to have to be considered in our recruitment process
  • The recruitment processes for junior, mid-level and senior developers are adjusted to the skills we want to assess
  • We want to get to know the most about the candidates, see their skills in practice. The aim is not to find your weaknesses but to create favorable conditions for candidates to show their strengths - both tech and soft skills.
  • We understand that the candidates have their private life. Sickness, vacation, other life situations don’t affect the recruitment process.

Our research shows that most people who work remotely don’t want to spend even more time in front of the screen. That’s why, in the frontend recruitment process we decided to skip one stage of the recruitment process (sending out the test task) for mid-level and senior roles.

For now, if we have enough information about a candidate’s experience after the first call with a recruiter, or there is a link to a Github or any other portfolio, we can invite him or her directly to the final stage - an online interview with developers where they can assess the candidate’s technical skills.

Currently, due to the pandemic, all of our recruitment processes are 100% remote.

One of the ideas that helped us improve our recruitment process was to establish special recruitment teams made up of senior and regular developers and the members of our People Team. We call them recruitment squads. The purpose of recruitment squads is to better understand the needs of the applicants, professionally assess their knowledge and skills, and help us continuously improve the experience for new recruits.

Read on to find out what both the members of our recruitment teams and new recruits think of the experience.

What’s so unique about the recruitment squads?

Currently, we have three recruitment squads - Frontend, Backend and QA.

The squad members are involved in important aspects of the recruitment such as:

  • Reviewing applicants’ CVs
  • Preparing the recruitment tasks
  • Taking part in the interviews
  • Assessing the tasks sent by the applicants
  • Giving feedback after the recruitment process

The process is unique because it’s focused on creating the best possible experience for the candidates. That’s why we make sure that the tasks are suited to the applicants’ level of experience and are based on real projects.

We make sure that the candidates feel comfortable and we keep the conversation natural.

After all, in our professional journeys we all went through some stressful interviews and awkward recruitment questions that we'd like to forget.

The added value of recruitment squads.

Recruitment squads add value not only for the applicants, but also for the developers who have direct influence over who will join their teams and are able to discover both the skills and personality of an applicant.

This is an important factor for recruitment squad members, after all it’s best to work with people who can enrich your team with a great skill set, but also are easy to get along with.

As the Frontend recruitment squad leader, Hubert says - “It’s all about recruiting great people for great projects”.

What the developers say about being a part of recruitment squads?

Hubert Białęcki, Senior Frontend Developer: 

When I first joined Monterail over 4 years ago, I received a typical recruitment task. I solved it, sent it back and was invited to the final recruitment - an interview. When I came I was surprised that I met 2 young developers who wanted to talk with me about code and exciting projects they were working on. 

It made a great impression on me because I was used to “regular” job interview processes that didn’t involve members of the development team. For me, being part of the recruitment squad gives a great opportunity to choose the people I’d like to work with based on skills, knowledge, attitude and personality. 

Wojciech Maciejak, Senior Backend Developer:

I think taking part in recruitment processes is a must-have experience for every developer and is a great addition to our everyday programming tasks. Every recruitment process is different, which teaches us not only to evaluate the skills of other developers, but most importantly, it helps us learn to approach problems from many perspectives and helps us look at our everyday work more critically and objectively. Another great thing about participating in recruitment is contact with other developers. We’re never in an applicant-evaluator relationship, we’re just a fellow developer who tries to understand how the recruitment task was completed step by step. From the perspective of a person who values soft skills a lot, I think it is the most important aspect of the whole recruitment process.

Piotr Czarny, Senior Fullstack Developer:

I decided to join the recruitment squad to try a new role, have an opportunity to confront my own experiences with a fresh perspective of people from outside the company and meet new developers, whom I might not meet in projects later.From the applicants’ point of view, developers are able to professionally assess their technical skills and they understand what they mean when they’re talking about their experience. We can filter out developers who don’t have the required skills, or give a chance to those who didn’t completely solve the task, but have great skill and potential. Apart from that, it’s the developers who will later work with the people they interview so they have a great chance to test not only their knowledge, but also attitude to teamwork, openness to discussion, independence, and reaction to feedback.

Michał Krawiec, Frontend Developer:

I decided to join the team to contribute to the company culture and help by making use of my people skills. The whole team at Monterail is very committed to making its members feel good and comfortable and we should also guide a conversation with a candidate in a similar way to help them present themselves in the best light.Besides that there is also the rewarding part - getting to know interesting people (many of them current fellow Monterail members), listening to their stories and observing solutions that other developers choose during tasks, like pair programming, give me a lot of joy and satisfaction.

What do the applicants say about the recruitment process?

After the recruitment process is over, every applicant is asked to leave their feedback. This year, 83.3% of applicants rated the process 5 out of 5.

They report the following strengths of Monterail’s recruitment process:

  • Honest review,
  • Developers' engagement and responsiveness to questions,
  • Friendly, informal atmosphere,
  • Interesting recruitment task - quite challenging, but not very time-consuming,
  • Good communication from the beginning of the process,
  • The meeting was conversational, not interview-like
  • The technical interview didn't feel like some kind of exam - it was just a conversation between two developers, very interesting and not stressful at all.

What the newly recruited Monterail members say about the process? 

Antanina Reznikava, Junior JavaScript Developer 

The developers who were engaged in the recruitment process gave me an expert introduction to the technologies that are used in Monterail, responded to all my questions and told me a lot about the specifics of work in the projects and work in Monterail in general. I also appreciated getting valuable feedback about my recruitment task and being able to meet the members of the team I am now a part of.

Tomasz Skuta, JavaScript Developer

I think for a new recruitee, meeting developers in the recruitment process is very important. They are, in fact, a window into how the company operates and can say a lot about the business’ approach to technology and developing apps. I appreciate being able to check if I’m feeling comfortable around the developers in charge of the recruitment process, after all they are the people the newly recruited developers will be interacting with most often.

Artur Rashkevich, JavaScript Developer:

I really liked the opportunity to ask a lot of technical questions and get thorough answers. Apart from that, I loved getting the information about the projects, work methodology, and team structure. It helped me prepare for the tasks that I’m now involved in.

As you can see, engaging members of the development team brings many benefits to both developers and candidates. We’re still improving the process to make it even better suited to the needs of our candidates. If you’re thinking of joining Monterail, see our newest job offers here.

 

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