How To Hire Software Engineers Efficiently: Reliable Technical Hiring

Hiring manager using a tablet PC and data-driven recruiting technology to “find the right people” for their company’s open positions.

The hiring process for software engineers has become increasingly difficult as the demand for technical talent increases. Learning how to hire software engineers and refining your hiring process is essential to staying ahead of the competition. Here we’ll break down the hiring process and how to optimize each part with data-driven recruiting technology. These tools will streamline hiring and attract tech talent to your open positions.

How To Hire Software Engineers: Process Necessities

It’s not new knowledge that the demand for software engineers far exceeds the supply. That is why the hiring process for software engineers needs to be swift and efficient. An advanced hiring process that uses data-driven technology will give the best impression to potential employees while assessing true real-time skill sets necessary for your open position(s). 

Plan Ahead

It’s crucial to plan before the interview. Assessing your current software engineering team can help evaluate potential employees. This assessment allows you and your hiring team to gather a list of the current team's strengths and weaknesses. You can assess these known skill-set gaps in all potential candidates to find the best fit.  

An interview is not only a first impression for the potential employee. It is also an opportunity for the potential employer to give a great first impression. At best, it leads to a talented new hire. At worst, it can result in a negative review of your company’s hiring practices—possibly discouraging other applicants. Planning invites your team to identify tactics to give candidates the best interview experience.

Using artificial intelligence (AI) for resume screening can help you determine each candidate's unique skill sets before the interview. This planning enables your team to craft relevant questions for the candidates to assess necessary strengths and weaknesses not presented on their resumes. 

Verifying candidates' identities before the interview by syncing LinkedIn account information can help you pick customized personality questions for the face-to-face interview. Those questions are based on different accomplishments they have linked and their different LinkedIn connections. 

Take-Home Test

Interviews should start with a take-home test. These tests will mainly assess the hard skills of a software engineer. The first step to identifying a software engineer candidate should be based on their practical skill sets. 

Data-driven recruiting technology increases efficiency and speed by implementing automated grading functionality. Automated grading systems give your team time to focus on other aspects of the interview process. 

Learning how to hire software engineers through a take-home test can be challenging because multiple-choice questions are often insufficient for software engineers. Despite this, some multiple-choice questions are necessary. When writing multiple-choice questions for software engineers, include questions such as:

  1. Given a slice of code, what does this return? 

This scenario tests the software engineers' ability to read and interpret written code that is not their own, a very useful skill for programming.

  1. What is the difference between a void pointer and a null pointer?

A void pointer references the data type, which is unknown. A null pointer refers to the value of the data, which is nothing.  

  1. Which language does not require a variable declaration prior to assigning?

Python does not require the declaration of a variable before assigning because it assumes the data type from the assignment operation.  

Short answers are the best implementation on a take-home test. Unfortunately, short answers can be copied and pasted. Use fraud prevention methods and systems to notify your team when a candidate submits a fraudulent answer. Data-driven recruiting technology also records short-answer questions on take-home tests.

Face-To-Face Interview

The face-to-face interview occurs after your team has removed unqualified candidates and is ready to assess the personality types of the frontrunners. Soft skill questions are necessary for this portion of the interview. 

Assessing whether the candidate is a fit for the team comes down to this interview portion. Determining if the candidate will clash with any existing team members is vital to the success of future projects. Keeping this assessment closer to a conversation can be beneficial because it puts the interviewee at ease. 

Ask questions and encourage dialogue to assess soft skills, such as:

  • Communication
  • Confidence
  • Patience
  • Self-Awareness
  • Critical Thinking
  • Collaboration
  • Time Management

Coding Analysis

This step is arguably the essential part of how to hire a software engineer. After assessing generic technical and soft skills, a coding analysis allows the current software engineering team to assess the real-time skills and talents of the chosen candidates. 

Using specially designed coding environments assesses the adaptability and comfortability of the candidate within different environments. These integrated development environments (IDEs) run code in real-time and give candidates real-time debugging features. 

Using on-the-job scenarios for the candidate to assess provides a preview of their responsibilities if offered the position. It also gives the hiring team insight into the candidate's aptitude for pertinent real-life programming scenarios. 

Coding is not necessarily about if a person can program on the spot. Much of what separates a good software engineer from a great one is their ability to research and learn fundamentals quickly. Encouraging candidates to research during coding application assessments will provide useful insight into how a candidate navigates a new obstacle.  


After your team has weeded out all unqualified candidates, comparing the results can be difficult and time-consuming. However, at this point in the hiring process, your team has little time before a competitor makes an offer (if they haven’t already). 

Gathering complete information for each candidate takes too long if your team waits until after all the interviews. Unfortunately, during the interviews, you might not have enough time to focus on putting together candidates' profiles. Therefore, it’s essential to use a specialized coding environment that automatically saves code and outputs it into candidate profiles during the assessment.

After the comparison, it’s key to be transparent to candidates who were not selected. Keeping a good relationship with all the candidates for future opportunities is especially important for software engineers. Since software engineers are in such high demand with such a low supply, that relationship can come in handy later. A candidate you passed on may grow exponentially in skills when a position opens down the line. 

Data-Driven Recruiting With Filtered

By utilizing data-driven recruiting technology, your hiring team can assess and hire the best candidates for your software engineering position(s). Filtered has all the features and integrations mentioned above and more for your team's utilization.

  • Artificial intelligence resume screening
  • Candidate identity verification
  • Automated grading functions
  • Virtual screen sharing platforms
  • Specially created IDEs for software engineers
  • Automated candidate profile creation
  • And much more

Getting ahead of the competition has never been easier. Learn how to hire software engineers better than the competition with Filtered. 

Filtered is a leader in skills-based hiring. Our end-to-end technical hiring platform enables you to spend time reviewing only the most qualified candidates, putting skills and aptitude at the forefront of your decisions. We’ll help you automate hiring while applying objective, data-driven techniques to consistently and confidently select the right candidates. To get started, contact our team today or register for a FREE demo.