What do the best interviewers have in common? We looked at thousands of real interviews to find out.

By Aline Lerner | Published: November 29, 2017; Last updated: July 14, 2023

At interviewing.io, we’ve analyzed and written at some depth about what makes for a good interview from the perspective of an interviewee. However, despite the inherent power imbalance, interviewing is a two-way street. I wrote a while ago about how, in this market, recruiting isn’t about vetting as much as it is about selling, and not engaging candidates in the course of talking to them for an hour is a woefully missed opportunity. But, just like solving interview questions is a learned skill that takes time and practice, so, too, is the other side of the table. Being a good interviewer takes time and effort and a fundamental willingness to get out of autopilot and …

If you care about diversity, don't just hire from the same five schools

By Meena Boppana | Published: October 24, 2017; Last updated: June 20, 2023

EDIT: Our university hiring platform is now on Product Hunt!

If you’re a software engineer, you probably believe that, despite some glitches here and there, folks who have the technical chops can get hired as software engineers. We regularly hear stories about college dropouts, who, through hard work and sheer determination, bootstrapped themselves into millionaires. These stories appeal to our sense of wonder and our desire for fairness in the world, but the reality is very different. For many students looking for their first job, the odds of breaking into a top company are slim because they will likely never even have the chance to show their skills in an interview. For these students ...

We analyzed thousands of technical interviews on everything from language to code style. Here's what we found.

By Aline Lerner | Published: June 13, 2017; Last updated: July 14, 2023

If you’re reading this post, there’s a decent chance that you’re about to re-enter the crazy and scary world of technical interviewing. Maybe you’re a college student or fresh grad who is going through the interviewing process for the first time. Maybe you’re an experienced software engineer who hasn’t even thought about interviews for a few years. Either way, the first step in the interviewing process ...

LinkedIn endorsements are dumb. Here’s the data.

By Aline Lerner | Published: February 27, 2017; Last updated: May 1, 2023

If you’re an engineer who’s been endorsed on LinkedIn for any number of languages/frameworks/skills, you’ve probably noticed that something isn’t quite right. Maybe they’re frameworks you’ve never touched or languages you haven’t used since freshman year of college. No matter the specifics, you’re probably at least a bit wary of the value of the LinkedIn endorsements feature. The internets, too, don’t disappoint in enumerating some absurd potential endorsements or in bemoaning the lack of relevance of said endorsements, even when they’re given in earnest. Having a gut feeling for this is one thing, but we were curious about whether we could actually come up with some numbers that showed how useless endorsements can be, and …

Lessons from 3,000 technical interviews… or how what you do after graduation matters way more than where you went to school

By Aline Lerner | Published: December 28, 2016; Last updated: May 1, 2023

The first blog post I published that got any real attention was called “Lessons from a year’s worth of hiring data“. It was my attempt to understand what attributes of someone’s resume actually mattered for getting a software engineering job. Surprisingly, as it turned out, where someone went to school didn’t matter at all, and by far and away, the strongest signal came from the number of typos and grammatical errors on their resume. Since then, I’ve discovered (and written about) how useless resumes are, but ever since writing that first post, I’ve been itching to do something similar with interviewing.io’s data. For context, interviewing.io is a platform where people can practice technical interviewing anonymously …

You can’t fix diversity in tech without fixing the technical interview.

By Aline Lerner | Published: November 22, 2016; Last updated: July 14, 2023
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In the last few months, several large players, including Google and Facebook, have released their latest and ultimately disappointing diversity numbers. Even with increased effort and resources poured into diversity hiring programs, Facebook’s headcount for women and people of color hasn’t really increased in the past 3 years. Google’s numbers have looked remarkably similar, and both players have yet to make significant impact in the space, despite a number of initiatives spanning everything from a points system rewarding recruiters for bringing in candidates from diverse backgrounds, to increased funding for tech education, to efforts to hire more candidates from diverse backgrounds in key leadership positions. Why have gains in diversity hiring been so lackluster across …

After a lot more data, technical interview performance really is kind of arbitrary.

By Aline Lerner | Published: October 13, 2016; Last updated: August 28, 2023
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interviewing.io is a platform where people can practice technical interviewing anonymously, and if things go well, get jobs at top companies in the process. We started it because resumes suck and because we believe that anyone, regardless of how they look on paper, should have the opportunity to prove their mettle. In February of 2016, we published a post about how people’s technical interview performance, from interview to interview, seemed quite volatile. At the time, we just had a few hundred interviews to draw on, so as you can imagine, we were quite eager to rerun the numbers with the advent of more data. After drawing on over a thousand interviews, the numbers hold up. In …

People are still bad at gauging their own interview performance. Here’s the data.

By Aline Lerner | Published: September 8, 2016; Last updated: May 1, 2023

interviewing.io is an anonymous technical interviewing platform. We started it because resumes suck and because we believe that anyone, regardless of how they look on paper, should have the opportunity to prove their mettle. In the past few months, we’ve amassed over 600 technical interviews along with their associated data and metadata. Interview questions tend to fall into the category of what you’d encounter at a phone screen for a back-end software engineering role at a top company, and interviewers typically come from a mix of larger companies like Google, Facebook, and Twitter, as well as engineering-focused startups like Asana, Mattermark, KeepSafe, and more. Over the course of the next few posts, we’ll be sharing some …

We built voice modulation to mask gender in technical interviews. Here’s what happened.

By Atomic Artichoke | Published: June 29, 2016; Last updated: August 7, 2023

interviewing.io is a platform where people can practice technical interviewing anonymously and in the process, find jobs based on their interview performance rather than their resumes. Since we started, we’ve amassed data from thousands of technical interviews, and in this blog, we routinely share some of the surprising stuff we’ve learned. In this post, I’ll talk about what happened when we built real-time voice masking to investigate the magnitude of bias against women in technical interviews. **In short, we made men sound like women and...

A founder’s guide to making your first recruiting hire

By Aline Lerner | Published: April 26, 2016; Last updated: May 1, 2023

Recently, a number of founder friends have asked me about how to approach their first recruiting hire, and I’ve found myself repeating the same stuff over and over again. Below are some of my most salient thoughts on the subject. Note that I’ll be talking a lot about engineering hiring because that’s what I know, but I expect a lot of this applies to other fields as well, especially ones where the demand for labor outstrips supply. Don’t get caught up by flashy employment history; hustle trumps brands At first glance, hiring someone who’s done recruiting for highly successful tech giants seems like a no-brainer. Google and Facebook are good at hiring great engineers, right? …

We know exactly what to do and say to get the company, title, and salary you want.

Interview prep and job hunting are chaos and pain. We can help. Really.