Learning how to hire from Stack Overflow

Sam RuebySoftware Development, Uncategorized Leave a Comment

Take a look at how Stack Overflow quantifies the quality of a web developer. At first this just looks like a way to figure out what number to put into Stack Overflow’s Salary Calculator, but it’s actually saying a lot more than that. They are articulating what we should all be looking for in a development team. And the scale they use is perfect:

  • A+++
    • They are the poster-child. There’s no one better.
  • A+
    • They are the example other’s look towards.
  • A
    • They do everything required.
  • B
    • Not the best, but they’re working on it.

I put the above descriptions into my own words, but the letter-grades are the same. I like that the entire scale implies they focus on people who always want to improve.

They’ve narrowed-down what they look-for to 15 qualities. Notice that half aren’t even related to the industry, but just good qualities of a human. Here they are, summarized how I understand them, in the order I believe to be most-to-least important:

  • Communicates effectively.
  • Vigilant. Is organized and plans well. Turns problems into road maps.
  • Contributes ideas and actively participates in discussions.
  • Understands the values of the team and makes decisions based on those values.
  • Driven to learn more. Especially in their own time.
  • Gives back to the community. Teaches. Shares. Helps.
  • Web Development / front-end skills. HTML5, JavaScript, CSS. Frameworks, best practices.
  • .NET / back-end skills.
  • Security skills. Won’t accidentally fall victim to SQL injection.
  • Displays tangible results often. Happily accepts feedback and able to efficient get to the next step.
  • Creates and uses tools effectively.
  • Participates in recruiting.
  • Understands UX/UI. Knows the lingo, what to do, and what not to do.
  • SQL Skills
  • Performance skills. Knows how to measure performance issue sand what to do about them.

We should all take note of these suggestions from Stack Overflow when considering a dream development team.