I just finished yet another [code test](ajmadison-code-test] plus I noted in my Media Ecosystem article a excess, mess of perpetual, perennial code tests, skills assessments, code challenge, code review, etc. (different names, same games) including (but neither prioritized by nor limited to) TestDome, Hired Assessments (yep, they bought another firm, GetPy, for it), Codility, TopCoder, TripleByte, StackOverflow, LeetCode, HackerRank, CodeForces, LinkedIn Assessments, etc. Time to share my thoughts on them to help recruiters and candidates both so I’ve a better time getting jobs.

Each role wants a different thing and always includes a code test to affirm their purported checklist (note, often what they market the description and initial screen don’t match their test’s contents, if so, run, they don’t know what they want or they want everything). Full stack roles further mean an unsustainable tide of them which robs candidates of invaluable time, attention, and focus more than giving them technical stimulation and a route to an actual placement. Recruiters should lead with these code tests with all details public so candidates know, confirm whether the alleged tech stack actually matches the hiring managers’ teams’ actual code test which reflects actual skills wanted.

My goal is a successful recruitment, not tests for their own sake or employers’ sake, so I don’t have time to discuss with recruiters and their clients what candidates can offer so they can either figure out, refine for market realities, get an education about recruitment, just conduct the top hirer’s open rolling approach of interviewing until they get some top talent for less-than-top rates, or whatever approach is happening.


Certifications are pre-completed code tests, often with only the result summarized, thus have the same problems aforementioned. I could bother with the AWS ones of which there’re 100s then SalesForce ones for which there’s an entire grey (because prep and registration help are unnecessary) market then goodness knows what more. Vendors herein want profit not recruitment thus not useful.

Old school ones circa CompTia are all for enterprise. I know few certs that’re for startup types as they lag the hiring market due to their marketing, anti-fraud, and acceptance (i.e. business development) needs.

I got my first such certification which is nice, but it’s unsustainable as I’ve finite labors for so/too many such competing services thus won’t chase others.

An idea is a new subcategory “Code Tests” under Programming Contests.

What’s the term for where a company is just hiring on an open basis without an actual open role, hoping for top talent?