> Technical interviews
> Try to get a real sample of work (which we already do for developers by working on GitLab issues) Avoid puzzles or weird algorithm testing questions. Probing for data structures is fine as long as it is relevant to the job the person is going to do.
> Be mindful of the background of the candidate, someone who knows 10 languages already (and some languages in particular, Perl for ex), may pickup ruby in a second given the right chance. Don't assume that someone with a Java background will not be capable of moving to a different stack.
> Consider including non technical people performing soft skills questions. Because technical people should be capable of talking to non-technical just fine, we should assess it.
Kudos to GitLab for these sentences. I think this is far better approach than the usual technical interviews.
1 : https://about.gitlab.com/handbook/hiring/#technical-intervie...
I mean, kudos to them if they changed their view on this. I just wanted to let you know about my experience on the topic at hand.
I promise that your open solicitation to GitHub http://octohire.me/ was not held against you :)
Some of my favorites:
We're a distributed, remote-only company where people work remote without missing out. For this, we use asynchronous communication and are as open as we can be by communicating through public issues, chat channels, and placing an emphasis on ensuring that conclusions of offline conversations are written down. https://about.gitlab.com/handbook/#communication
Don't frown on people taking time off, but rather encourage that people take care of themselves and others. https://about.gitlab.com/handbook/#paid-time-off
Runbooks for the on-call person for common issues https://gitlab.com/gitlab-com/runbooks
Edit: Link formatting
GitLab is by far the best company I've worked at and the best company you could work for, as far as I can see. The values that you see in the handbook are really what every single one of my colleagues works and lives by.
People frequently take time off and the team is always supportive, whether it is for a long vacation, personal matters or just to play a newly released videogame. This happens at every level in the organisation.
Asynchronous communication is hard. We were lucky that we've stuck to insisting on doing this well since the very start of GitLab Inc and we're continuously working on making it easier to contribute to documentation and to encourage everyone to do the same.
Interestingly, more and more of my colleagues (and myself included) are moving house to their favorite places to live. Often in other countries. Remote work in itself does not guarantee that you're comfortable enough to make big life changes, you need trust in the company you're working for. I believe that by being transparent, fair and understanding of what makes a good work/life balance, we are slowly achieving to gain that trust.
I definitely like the ethos of GitLab, but unfortunately most of the remote-only companies I've interviewed with just don't offer salaries competitive with either SV/NYC tech or what I can make doing remote contracting.
Another consideration is that people's costs are strongly related to where they live.
But I can also see the case for paying everyone the same. But I think other remote friendly companies are doing the same as us, this video shows how Travis CI thinks about it https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N8u9H6JDAzo
I think what's more important is that their competing offers from local companies will necessarily be higher, so assuming they're worth the higher price, you have to pay it.
How does pay vary with location changes? If I live in SF now, and get that pay, then move, do I wind up getting paid less? If I start in a small town with low expenses, does that mean I can never afford to move to SF?
For now only are principles are detailed on https://about.gitlab.com/handbook/people-operations/#compens... one important one: "We pay on the lower end of market rates for engineering positions because we offer the benefit of working on open source (great workflow, peers, build reputation); most engineers take a pay cut to join."
I look forward to seeing a blog post when you have that compensation framework completed. :)
I've seen/heard words like that meaning anything from a 10% paycut to a 55% paycut in practical terms, its too big a range for me to really take away an effective idea of GitLab's pay level which is why I was curious about the more concrete form.
A 10-15% haircut for a place as good as GitLab sounds on paper seems reasonable, a 50% haircut...not so much.
We don't have any hard data on this but I think we're in the reasonable range.
there are places in the world where, say, the real estate is red-hot (obviously making higher salaries more desirable) but where local companies have not kept up with that (making cross-company surveys skew really low) so in that case what would you do?
Managing a distributed remote-friendly company definitely seems challenging, of course you're open source and have an awesome reputation, so salary is very likely not something prospective employees consider as much as they would otherwise when joining (which likely works in your favor in creating a very nice working environment full of engaged folks)
We will maybe end up with a mix of cost of living, cost of labour, and rent.
We address red-hot real estate by considering to add rent to the mix, but it is tricky since some team members might be living in rent-controlled apartments and we want to have a number that doesn't depend on personal circumstances.
And we're working on a Global Compensation Framework https://docs.google.com/document/d/1TEHZTvg9jxlwvKvsc5fm2FvZ... so that you can calculate your compensation before even applying.
Screw it, I'll be applying soon.
We're not looking for project managers. But you can see all our current jobs on our job page .
(Not to be a nag - I think it is great that you folks are sharing this, and it sounds like a great place to work.)
For an example see https://about.gitlab.com/jobs/production-engineer/
Please let me know if you have any other suggestions.
That team page has very few women listed, not to mention women in engineering roles.
Do you see this as an issue, and if so, what steps are you taking?
> You don't need to worry about taking time off to go to the gym, take a nap, go grocery shopping, doing household chores, helping someone, taking care of a loved one, etc. If something comes up or takes longer than expected and you have urgent tasks and you're able to communicate, just ensure the rest of the team knows and someone can pick up any urgent tasks.
Still... circumstances might force me to move out of state next year, and if that happens and I can't stay with my current employer, I'm certainly going to check GitLab's openings first.
The marketing team has their OKR embedded in the handbook https://about.gitlab.com/handbook/marketing/#okrs
If we meet our sales target everyone in the company gets a free dinner https://about.gitlab.com/handbook/#sales-target-dinner
There is a pretty sweet Kramdown SSG guideline https://about.gitlab.com/handbook/marketing/developer-relati...
It is always sad to see people go, but it happens and after the decision is made we do have a checklist for the process https://about.gitlab.com/handbook/offboarding/
A recent addition (thanks Eliran) has been our remote coffee break calls https://about.gitlab.com/handbook/#coffee-break-calls
As someone who works remotely, that is something I will be doing as well from here on out :)
How does it make sense to not show me your company handbook before I decide if I want to work with you?
Now, I'm always pro-active and during the negotiation I'm very upfront: "I will not sign any new document after accepting this offer. If you have a non-compete, NDA, handbook, IP, etc I want to see them and review them with my attorney before accepting the offer." Has worked pretty well so far, helped me avoid very agressive non-compete.
GitLab.com is completely free, public and private repositories, CI and unlimited collaborators. 
However they do allow early exercise. That means if you can afford the strike price when you join, then you won't lose your vested equity when you leave. Taxes are the main reason people can't afford to exercise their vested options when they leave, but if you early exercise then you pay no up-front tax (or very little).
So that's better than average, but not as good as the new hotness of 7-10 year exercise windows like what Quora or Pinterest are doing. Reason being, the strike price can still be expensive for folks so it's better if you can just keep your vested options.
I've pointed our CRO (Chad) to your comment to provide further insight.
You can add people to specific vaults and it works really well.
One recent hire tried to have their department write down more to help with scaling. It was hard to convince the rest of the department so he ended up joining GitLab.
We're always working on improving our hiring practices, which can be different for different positions. Anyone applying to GitLab should have a great experience, independent of the outcome.
Anyway, we know there is a lot we can improve, feel free to reach out anytime to sid at our company domain.
> Asked how many days off she took last year, Dawkins was surprised. Forced to think about it, she realized it wasn’t very much: just 14 days, although “it felt like a lot.” There is a game to play, she admits: “You are subconsciously thinking about ‘does this appear to be too much time,’ but that’s human nature,” she said. “There have to be checks and balances with management so there’s a process in place.”
Kickstarter last year reportedly rescinded its policy because of this effect:
> It’s always been important to us to ensure that our team is able to enjoy a quality work/life balance,” the Kickstarter spokesperson told BuzzFeed News. “What we found was that by setting specific parameters around the number of days, there was no question about how much time was appropriate to take from work to engage in personal, creative, and family activities.”
Another side effect: with no minimum number of vacation days in place, employers are not required to compensate employees for accrued vacation days when they quit.
> with no minimum number of vacation days in place, employers are not required to compensate employees for accrued vacation days when they quit.
Hmm...how does that work for employees in other countries? In the UK full time workers are entitled to 5.6 weeks holiday per year (so if you work 5 days a week, you get 28 days). And employers are obliged to pay unused days when the employee leaves.
The US average includes lots of different employers in lots of different industries. In most of them, seniority and other factors (many of the same ones that are correlated with pay) are positively correlated with time off. So, it could be both "above the US average" and below, e.g., what would be typically granted to knowledge workers of otherwise similar education and experience in fields of similar demand.
I have 30 days vacation, which is fairly typical. Giving twice the vacation length as notice (two weeks for one week off etc) is usually reasonable, but it's usually in the company policies.
Somewhere with unlimited vacation would need to ensure the employees used at least the legal minimum (20 days, plus public holidays).
We expect that our people make sensible judgements about the time off that they take, but if it's not written in our handbook, there are no further rules.
> Always make sure that your job responsibilities are covered while you are away.
We do have a few talented interns that could get started immediately as they already showed some experience with the position they'd be taking.
If there is a position you're interested in as an intern, you can consider applying to the position, but it's up to the team lead and the circumstances whether we could give you a position as intern.