Friday, September 4, 2015

Toptal recruitment process

I have stumbled upon a couple of blog posts speaking very negatively about Toptal... I have (proudly) passed their first 2 stages of interviews - then I have decided to opt out because I prefer to employ my free time to study, do sport and read books, rather than trying to make extra money coding websites for which I have really no knack.

Here a few considerations

The Codility tests are difficult, yes. But they are not impossible and with some exercise (I have invested maybe 3 days) you can really improve and learn some common strategies. For me it was very rewarding to learn all those algorithms, and I found the tutorials published on Codility site tremendously interesting. Maybe in real life very rarely you have to implement such algorithms, just like in real life you don't have to use Maxwell equations, but still being able to code complex problems is part of your engineer background, so stop bitching.

Part 2 of the interview can be some time after the Codility tests, so I suggest you review your code before part 2, because they might ask you to justify your coding.

The "face to face" interview is also quite challenging, you must code real time while the interviewer watches you. In my case the interviewer was extremely kind and this helped me a lot not to go totally in panic. The problem was relatively simple, much simpler than the Codility problems, but honestly having to code while someone watches adds quite some hindrance to the task. On the whole it was stressful but rewarding. Hey I know nobody loves being interviewed, but unfortunately no pain no gain, it's part of life, so stop bitching.

I have no clue how much you get paid and which kind of projects you can work on.

And no, nobody in Toptal asked me to write this panegyric post.

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