When I started college at BYU I wanted to go to law school.

My 3rd semester in I took the pre-law class and decided “what the heck am I doing??? Attorneys all hate their jobs!”

I graduated in computer science. 

I don’t do programming anymore (I hire developers in the Philippines) but I still use the knowledge I gained in computer science classes as I run a software based business.

In hiring developers, I have a major knowledge advantage which I can’t transfer to other people simply because I understand programming.

Here’s MY best advice.
In hiring a programmer/developer (they both mean the same thing these days):

– The more experienced they are, the better they are. This also means they’re more expensive.
This isn’t always the case…but if you don’t know what you’re doing hiring someone newer is a major risk.

– Someone who says they can do everything isn’t likely to be very good.

– Programmers aren’t designers.  Stuff they make looks crappy. Hire a designer.

– Tests are usually helpful in weeding out bad programmers. Here’s a test we’ve used over the years:
But it’s really only useful if you’re going to look at someone’s code.
I never got into more advanced tests.

– If you don’t know what you’re looking for, ask a friend who is techie.  Or, preferably 3-4 friends. They’re all likely to give you different answers.  Find a commonality. 

What I’m really looking for here is your advice about hiring a programmer/developer.
How do you know if someone is good? 
How do you test people? 
What’s your process?
I’m offering a free month at OnlineJobs.ph for really good answers.
Reply to this email. It comes to me.


Dan (my business partner) and I in 2005 still doing the programming work ourselves. We thought we were so cool!