Updated 21 May, 2013, 8:08 pm IST
Code your way to a job
| by Priyanka Tilve
You may be a good coder, but your resume leaves a lot to be desired. And unfortunately, the resume is often the first point of contact with potential employers. However, thanks to the latest trends, companies are increasingly looking beyond the traditional means when hiring, especially when it comes to the IT field. There are several platforms that organise coding contests partnered with tech companies, which you can be a part of. And if you are able to prove your mettle, you could easily land yourself a job. Almost all the leading tech companies have explored this channel, and the trend is slowly picking up. The benefits for job seekers are plenty. Firstly, they don’t have to apply for several jobs in several companies. Secondly, they will be judged based on their skills and thirdly, they get global exposure amongst other things. We have listed three such portals here that organise coding contests.
The InterviewStreet platform is being used by leading tech companies
Launched in 2009, InterviewStreet was co-founded by engineers Vivek Ravisankar and Harishankaran K. It started off as a part of their college project during the placement season when they got together to set up a forum to conduct mock interviews to filter right candidates. It was so effective that they decided to take it further and the result was Interviewstreet.com. Its roster includes companies like Zynga, Facebook, Amazon and even NASA. These companies use the platform to recruit programmers who have to take up the coding challenge and based purely on the score, an offer is made. Interviewstreet periodically conducts coding competitions for coders to test their skills and attract the attention of the recruiters. CodeSprint is its successful coding contest that attracts recruiters and programmers alike. The recently concluded CodeSprint 3, which was open for programmers from all over the world, attracted companies like Quora, Palantir, Coursera, OpenTable and RocketFuel, to name a few. It involves solving basic programming problems, AI and algorithmic challenges. Going forward, InterviewStreet plans to conduct CodeSprint every month. It’s usually held over the weekend; the participants are alerted over the email at the start of the contest and they can begin solving the problems. They earn points for solving the problem correctly; these points then determine their standing, on the basis of which companies contact them. When a participant gets hired by a company, then he/she has to pay a certain amount to InterviewStreet. Tech giants like Microsoft, Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Groupon, etc. have been known to make use of the platform. Some of them even customise the set of challenges to meet their specific requirements. You can get updates about the latest contest from its FB page.
Within a few months of its launch, iLiftOff has been able to garner a lot of response
Another platform on the similar premise as InterviewStreet is iLiftOff, but unlike the former, this one is not just limited to coders and the platform is open for several other disciplines as well. iLiftOff was established by siblings Raghav and Abhinav Aggarwal, both self-learnt coders. When they established their first company Trutech Webs, an online learning solutions provider, they experienced great hardship in finding the 'right' software developers for their organisation. They realised that a good resume need not necessarily translate into good developing skills and also the other way around. As the result, they ended up interviewing hundreds of candidates. That’s when they decided to come up with a series of online coding tests to pre-screen the candidates and were able to find the right kind of people. This led to the establishment of iLiftOff, which has over 125 online tests in areas of technology, finance, marketing, law and general aptitude. You can create your profile and give a test in your area of expertise, and you will be contacted by the recruiters, depending on your score. Companies also have their custom tests, for which you can appear directly from here; if successful, you will be called in for an interview. They have also launched an API for the test, for job portals to integrate the test on their platform. Since its launch a couple of months ago, the platform has been used by companies like Rediff and Justdial, and has attracted over 15,000 job seekers.
With TechGig you can test your skills as well as take part in contests
TechGig, which is one of the leading platforms where IT professionals can interact with their peers and share their skills, is also an avenue to put your coding skills to test. It has a feature called Skill Test that has tests for several skills like C, C++, Java, PHP, HTML, MySQL, Linux, Oracle, Windows, Android, Ajax, Web Designing, Software Testing, Facebook API, Perl, .Net and others. You can appear for as many of these test as you like to assess your skills. The results will provide you with a clear picture of your strengths and weaknesses, which in turn will help you work on your weaker areas. It will also give you an idea of where you stand compared to others. If you manage to be at or near the top of the leaderboard, then you will invariably attract the attention of the recruiters on the portal. Besides this, TechGig also conducts coding contests, which require you to solve programming challenges in your chosen language. There are attractive prizes for the winners. Another aspect of contests are the ones organised by the companies that are looking to hire. You can take part in these contests and if you do well, then you can earn a chance for an interview. Before entering any of the contests, you can practice by solving the previous challenges that are made available. You can even seek guidance from community members. TechGig also acts as a job portal where you can access jobs posted by employees of various companies as well as jobs posted on job-board of companies.
Cover Image: Getty Images
Tags: InterviewStreet , coding contest , coding for jobs , coding skills , online coding competition , iliftoff , coding contest India , TechGig , programming jobs , online jobs for coders , test your coding skills online , coding jobs
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