On the developer side, whiteboards feel like having to study for the SATs again, which is doubly frustrating at the senior level because you know better than before how little these questions correlate to qualification. Irrelevant, spam-esque LinkedIn messages from recruiters confirm how sloppy the whole process feels. And you spend the whole time thinking, there just HAS to be a better way.
On the recruiter side, they have to wade through a horrifyingly-unmanageable torrent of unqualified resumes with the help of bad tools. When a great candidate fails their test and can't move forward through the process, the recruiter is almost as frustrated with the process as the applicant (management, I'm told, remains unwavering in their commitment to "establishing a baseline"). Even worse are the candidates who are filtered out from the process by Applicant Tracking Systems because their resume lists "8+ years of experience with a wide variety of NoSQL databases" and not "MongoDB"
I think both parties recognize the inefficiencies in the process. Where we've landed is the following:
- Developers need to learn to play the game. Understand how much of a black hole "Easy Apply" buttons can be and not rely on them, optimize their resumes for the role (including anticipation of boolean searches based on the job posting), and make meaningful connections with their local tech communities so recruiters know where to find them.
- Recruiters need to advocate for flexibility and transparency in the process. Workflows involving "shoving as many people into the funnel as possible and use an ATS to sort through the noise" are untenable. Reconsider systems that treat whiteboards or tests as requirements and not just data points. Offer up relevant information earlier, with the hope that good applicants will use that info, and their honesty, to help you figure out if they're a good fit.