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Interview Techniques (Java) – For Interviewers

Hello and welcome to my fresh new blog. My name is Pruthwiraj Ghadge and I have come with a very interesting topic this time. Yes…!!! Interview Techniques for Java Geeks. Ohh! But what did you say? 

For Interviewers?

Yes… For Interviewers…!!!

What do you mean by that? Why will interviewers need Interview Techniques? They are recruiters and they just need to ask questions and select the appropriate candidate for the post.

Yes, of course, they are but don’t you think that asking questions is an art? Oh yes, you heard me right. It is, by all means.

So come on, let us discuss it. And yes, before we begin…

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Disclaimer:- Any of the contents written here may not be any proven techniques or practiced methods of interviewing the candidates. These are my own experiences and techniques followed by me in my general routine. I do not claim that these techniques are very strong but yes they might help. Interviewing candidates is a very crucial task and it takes a lot of effort to choose the right candidate for the right post. These techniques helped me in some way and I think they may help my friends too.

Interviews are one of the ways by which we recruit the candidates for the job posts. Interviews are conducted for various reasons by the recruiters, some of them are;

To know the technical know-how of the candidate

Their proficiency level in the domain they are working

The ability to learn and adapt to new environments

The capacity to handle complex problems and solve them

The pressure handling abilities when put in adverse situations

Application of the concepts and implementing them

Team handling and/or peer working capabilities

Innovativeness, research and developing nature

A company always needs efficient and loyal employees who can put 100% in the growth of the company and hence they always choose the right candidates by various methods of recruitment. An interview is one of them and is one of the most effective and easy(?) ways of doing so. However, an interview is considered as very easy to carry out but actually it is not. It is one of the most difficult and complex processes. 

We are not going to talk about general interviews or HR Interviews but Technical Interviews specifically related to Java. And for recruiting fresher candidates who have just passed out their graduation and looking forward to a great career in the IT industry.

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Over a period of time, the interview processes have changed a lot and nowadays we are doing it more technology-based processes rather than traditional methods of Face-to-Face interviews. So lets us have a look at the various different ways of Interview conducting methods.

  1. Aptitude Test
  2. Face-to-Face Interview
  3. Telephonic Interview
  4. Skype or Video Conferencing
  5. Demonstration
  6. Programming/Coding Test

When it comes to Java, we must think of it as a “C-C++-Java” suite because the core concepts of programming in Java come from C and the Object-Oriented concepts from C++. Without knowing the core concept and basic Object-Oriented concepts one can not learn Java directly. So if you are interviewing a candidate for Java you must check his knowledge for C and C++ as well. We will try to understand the candidate’s mindset and approach towards the interview first. Then we will discuss the facts that one must consider when interviewing a candidate. We will talk about two main profiles i.e. Developer and Trainer (being a Trainer for 11 long years is not a joke).

Facing an Interview is not a kind of simple and easy task. It is a very difficult and stressful situation and so while conducting an interview we must understand that the candidates are under tremendous pressure whether they are freshers or laterals (professionals). So treating them carefully is very necessary as we may lose a good candidate only because he was not able to answer due to stress. However, this is possible mostly with the freshers as they are not very used to interviews and may fail as a reason for that. On the other hand, laterals or professionals can steady their nerves quickly and settle fast as they are well through it many times. But yes professionals also get nervous and they may also face the same problems at times.

Students who have just passed out and are looking for jobs are very eager to work and earn money…!!! Yes, earning money is their prime target these days and of course, it should be, if the industry is paying you so lucratively, why not? However, in the horde of earning money, they completely forget about grooming their interpersonal skills and interview skills. As a result of this, they face special problems like Ergophobia or Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) i.e. fear of finding Employment or talking to people in social forums and facing interviews. Such people can face difficulties in interviews and may fail. But, does that mean that they are bad candidates? Or they are not capable? No, obviously not. The only thing that they need is a little bit of courage and self-confidence. But we are not talking about Interviewees, we are talking about Interviewers. So what does an Interviewer should do now? An Interviewer should identify such candidates and treat them a bit differently. An Interviewer should know about the situations in front of them and take the necessary steps accordingly.

The general practice that we can follow is to make the candidate feel comfortable and relaxed. In most cases, the candidates are very anxious and nervous due to which they may totally go blank and undergo tremendous pressure, which could result in unable to answer. Upon identifying such candidates, the Interviewer should ask them to be relaxed and sit comfortably. When they make themselves comfortable, ask them if they need water (drinking water releases pressure and helps in most situations) or anything else. Once they seem to be fully adjusted to the environment we can begin with the interview process.

Making them comfortable is one thing but what is important is to make them answer. So let us now talk about how to ask the questions. Now you may ask, what is so difficult in asking the questions? Answering them is a really tough job if you do not ask questions appropriately. Yes, as I said in the beginning, asking questions is an art.

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So, how to ask questions?

In a Technical Interview, the sequence of the questions matters. The questions should be arranged in such a way that they should be linked to each other. Every question that is being posed should have some connection with the previous question. In other words, when we begin an interview, we should have a list of questions to be asked and more precisely they should be in proper order with some link between each consequent question. If we have a list of questions handy we can easily conduct an interview without making it a mess.

The questions are prepared beforehand and listed in a sequence, from basic to advanced. Begin with the fundamental questions and try to understand how well the candidate is at ground level. If the base is clear then you can start with the core part and ask some higher-level theory. This will test if the candidate really knows something about the subject. If the candidate is through then it’s time for some application-level questions to see his/her applicability. This basic procedure will make us be sure of one thing that we are on the right track. However, there is a catch. Sometimes candidates use some technical terms in answer to impress the Interviewer and the Interviewer could not stop him/herself from asking questions related to those terms and suddenly leave the track. This may lead to unnecessary stretching of the interview as the Interviewer may go on asking such questions based on the answers of the candidate. Try to avoid such questions as much as possible.

Alright now let’s talk about technology. The interview process should begin with the Basic Knowledge of C Programming. The very fundamental concepts of programming are tested with the knowledge of C. Most of the core concepts are covered in C programming and therefore we can take more time with C rather than Java. Once C Programming is done the important part is Object-Oriented programming concepts and that can be done with C++. If the candidate is at par with those things we can be sure that he/she is good enough and can be groomed further. Now without entering the core part again, we can stick to the Java-specific things and ask only related concepts from Java. Java is a vast technology and we can take leverage of asking almost everything. I would suggest not going back to C & C++ but staying in Java.

For now, I would like to take a break. But this is not the end of this conversation I will soon come up with the next part of the blog. In that part, we will discuss various different methods of interviews and how to carry them out. What methods could be more effective? How the time matters and how it plays an important role?

I hope you liked the blog. Stay tuned for the next one…!!! Till then have a nice time…!!!

Happy coding….!!!!

Author:
Ghadge, Pruthwiraj | SevenMentor Pvt. Ltd.

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