Phase 1 of Hiring, Getting from 0-30

Towards the end of 2017, we reopened hiring on the mobile team at Automattic which had been shut since the start of the year as we got things in order. I think of this as phase 1 of hiring on the team – nailing the basics of the process, and making some progress with diversity […]

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Interview: How to create momentum on day zero

I did an interview with GitPrime about hiring and onboarding. I really like how it came out, and I hope you like it too! “We talk about how engineers hate process,” says Cate Huston, Mobile Lead at Automattic, “but here’s my theory: engineers often love process, but when they love it, they call it culture.” It’s […]

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The Receptionist Test

The receptionist test: how does someone treat the receptionist? Alternative: a person with power or authority is someone’s first interaction with a company, e.g. by staffing the front desk. How are they treated (i.e. do people assume they are the receptionist). In the modern era there are three ways to pass the receptionist test. Look the […]

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On Improving Diversity in Hiring

Caveat: Diversity is more than gender. I’ve used gender in some of these examples because I have enough anecdotal data to support these theories wrt to gender but I don’t want to extrapolate beyond that. In general my policy is to test and measure women because we can actually have data for that, but then […]

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Things You Don’t Learn in Technical Interviews

I can see now...

I spend more time than I thought I would thinking about technical interviews lately, because something I’ve been doing is conducting technical interviews for a few startups including Glowforge (they’re hiring!). Since March I’ve done ~36 interviews. Designing hiring systems is hard because you only have partial data – specifically you don’t know who your […]

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