James Nock

Web Development & Management

2 weeks, 2 interviews, 2 offers

A few weeks ago I wrote my first ever blog post and I quite enjoyed it. It came after I was sacked from my previous job as I was more expensive than outsourcing the work to foreign lands. I wish them the best of luck on their future endeavours, I’m not convinced that it’s the best way forwards for them but then I would say that wouldn’t I? At first I was gutted and angry that I’d done literally nothing wrong. I quickly put together my brand new website, as the old was a little er, hum, old and set about trying to get some work myself.

At the same time, I applied for two jobs. One, was over in Brighton and the other, just 2.6 miles from my front door in Eastbourne. Both companies put out very interesting job adverts and so I was pleased to receive interviews for both.

First up was the interview in Brighton, it went very well, although I have to say that I worry about companies that use ‘codility’ testing to screen candidates because, quite frankly, it’s not even testing skills that are close to those of a Web Developer. I know I’m not the only one who feels that pulling array values from a binary tree in a particular order, calculating the difference in those values and then comparing each of those result sets against the other branches of the tree is a little different to web-programming. Oh yeah, and the binary tree can be of practically infinite size too so unless you really ‘get it’ there’s no way you’ll code it without crashing Apache, especially as the testing environment is practically non-existent whilst you’re writing the code from scratch. Those with a degree in maths will probably do better at some of the questions than programmers do. Although, that said, I did very well, and 5 hours later I got offered a job. The word ‘relieved’ would just about sum up my feelings at the end of that day. I thanked them for the offer, informed them that I had another interview in a few days time and told them that I’d get back to them as soon as possible. In fairness, this company used the codility test as more of a ‘discussion starter’ than as a definitive ‘can code/can’t code’ test. I’d encourage other companies to use it for this purpose and this purpose only.

A few days later came interview 2. This interview went very well, and if I’m brutally honest I really wanted it to. The job advert had appealed to me slightly more than the other one and it’s a whole lot closer to home too which can only ever be a good thing, especially if allows us to get that dog that I spoke about before. During the interview I learned that there would be a little bit of travelling with the job from time-to-time and that they’d like the successful candidate to travel to Denmark at some point. The job involves turning all of their websites around by modernising them, de-flashing (sorry Adobe) them and making them rank higher in Google. There was no element of the interview where I had any doubt in my mind that this was the job for me, I wanted it and I was pretty sure they wanted me for it. Not counting my chickens before they hatched I went home and told the other half that I thought I’d got it but wasn’t sure. As the day went on I thought more and more about the role and wanted it even more. Just before the end of the day I received a phone call offering me the job. I was ecstatic and accepted instantly.

I start my new job on the 6th of January 2014 and I’m really looking forward to it.

I wish everyone who has read this a very merry Christmas and a happy new year, I hope Santa brings you all of the toys that you asked for.