Once you’ve landed yourself an interview with that developer that you have been chasing for weeks, you might be wondering – What should I do next? How do I make sure that they are excited, interested and feeling informed enough even after the interview? What do developers actually want to hear in an online interview?
When switching your interviewing process to online, you have to keep in mind that virtual presentations are harder to follow than the ones in person – and without the visuals, people tend to remember less. This also means that your presentation should be as concise as possible, which translates into only a couple of minutes to deliver a big chunk of very important information to the developer.
Here are some tips that our Talent Managers at WeAreDevelopers have gathered over the years:
Start with an introduction
This might be a given – but hey – we did want to give you an extensive guide on how to create a perfect company presentation after all.
- Start with some small talk to make them feel more comfortable and relaxed. You can even crack a joke, if it comes naturally to you.
- Introduce yourself, your role in the company, and the agenda of the interview.
- Introduce the company shortly (name, what the company does, location(s), number of employees, official language, etc.)
Emphasize your product/project(s)
Presenting your product(s) or project(s) is one of the two most important things in the whole pitch, because it is the essence of the company and the thing that might make or break the deal. However, from our experience, it may not be easy for one to grasp during a video call, because it is typically abstract and usually explained quite superficially. So, to overcome this, here are our tips in how to be effective:
- Describe the product/project in detail: It’s purpose, features, target audience, important numbers (e.g. the number of users). The current stage of the project might be very important to some developers for them to understand where they would fit in.
- Mention the milestones that have been already achieved and those that are planned for the future (e.g. “We have already expanded to India and our next step is opening an office in the US”).
- Then you can go ahead and talk about the tech stack used by the product team (make sure that you mention even the technologies that are not required for the position that you are interviewing for, because they are interested in the whole picture).
- Give them an idea of the product team, their way of working and composition (e.g. number of people, hierarchy, development methodologies used, etc.).
- Allow time for questions here.
Share your culture, values and benefits
While it is usually easier to get a feeling for a company’s culture during an onsite interview, virtual meetings can sometimes make it difficult for both the company and candidate. We suggest linking the benefits to the company culture/values if applicable and give as many examples as possible.
- Talk about the ‘physical working culture’ that they can expect (e.g. open space, remote work, home office, flex hours, etc.).
- Outline and explain the company values. (e.g. team work, transparency, open feedback, knowledge sharing, ownership, agility, continuous learning, etc.).
- Then you can list the real benefits that you as a company can offer (e.g. remember that in Austria 25 holidays is not a benefit – it is something they are entitled to byAustrian law).
What you should outline are things like: Inside academy (e.g. connected to knowledge sharing), or a budget for self development (e.g. continuous learning) or promotion plans (e.g. ownership), etc.
- If your benefits program has been revisited based on employee feedback, mention it – as this says a lot about the company culture.
- Allow time for questions.
Overall, WeAreDevelopers really recommends that you make your pitch as engaging as possible and not just list facts – it engages the human brain much more and it is more compelling.
Still feeling a bit unsure?
Here is an example of a company pitch:
Recruiter: Hi John. Thank you for joining the call! How are you today?
Candidate: Hi, I am very well, thank you. And how are you?
Recruiter: I am good, thanks. No one likes Mondays but I am happy to be here with you today. My name is Anne and I am a Technical Recruiter here at XYZ. I was hoping to give you a brief overview of the company, our product and our culture before we move on to talking about you and your accomplishments. Does that sound good to you?
Candidate: Sure, sounds like a plan!
Recruiter: Alright, great! So, as you probably already know, we are XYZ and we are helping people to learn the alphabet through our platform with the support of AI. The company was founded 4 years ago in New York. Our main office is still there, and we are operating in 20 other states in the US, as well as in Paris, Madrid and Vienna in Europe. The company employs 350 people globally and we have over 45 different nationalities working with us. English is, of course, our official language.
Let me tell you a bit more about the product itself.
XYZ was developed because we saw there was a need for an easy AI solution that helps people learn the alphabet in the most efficient way. Our users are mostly parents and their children. We have a lot of different games, quizzes and other interactive ways of learning, and it is all customized based on the users’ way of learning – the algorithm takes care of this.
We have both web and mobile versions of the product. So far we have reached a milestone of 1 million users, but we plan to triple that this year – we are always using goals as we believe it drives motivation.
Our product team is divided into 5 cross functional scrum teams that usually consist of two backend developers, one or two frontend developers, a tester and DevOps Engineer. Of course, in addition, there are Product Owners and Scrum Masters. As you can tell, we are using Agile Methodologies for development, namely Scrum, and our sprints are usually 2 weeks.
We firmly believe that scrum teams are self organizing. Therefore, we do not have team leads but instead, we have a team of Architects that is helping the Product Owners and Scrum masters.
Do you have any questions so far?
Candidate: No, all clear so far!
Recruiter: Great! Now let me give you a quick glance into our culture and benefits as well.
We have an open space office and we have no problem with remote work or home office. The only important thing is that you are present in the office for important meetings, unless there is something that is stopping you from doing so.
We try to embody and live our values fully and award our employees accordingly:
- Open feedback and freedom of ideas is one of them. There are no secrets between us, and everyone is welcome and encouraged to give feedback and their own take on any situation. One of our developers recently suggested changes in the code that our CTO recently made because he believed it would make it more clean – and yes it was implemented and worked like a charm.
- Here everyone is expected to take ownership and responsibility of their projects and take care of them accordingly. This is usually what leads to promotions and awards that we have each quarter.
- We are big fans of Continuous Learning, and we try to foster that within the company. Everyone should use 20% of their time to learn something new, and we also have a budget for each employee that can be used for online courses, conferences, etc.
Other benefits that might be interesting for you are – for example – subsidized lunch, gym membership allowance, donation allowance, coverage of the public transportation ticket, or a monthly allowance for gas, and a yearly trip where we take all of the employees to a party location and have a lot of fun all together.
That would be pretty much it. Do you have any questions regarding this part?
Candidate: This is a lot of information and it sounds very interesting, thank you! So far nothing has come up, but if something does, I will feel free to reach out to you, is that alright?
Recruiter: Sure thing! You can always reach me on email or Linkedin. Now it would be great to hear a bit more about you and your experiences so far…