recommended reading

For Coders, Tests Will Replace Resumes and Interviews


Companies mostly guess at the quality of potential hires. They rely on exaggerated resumes, and often unreliable references. Most people aren’t especially good at interviewing, and are prone to bias. Even with exhaustive pre-screening, many interviews end up being a waste of time on both ends. HackerRank, a Bangalore and Palo Alto based start-up, aims to fix that problem for the competitive tech-hiring space.

The company has built a rapidly growing platform where computer scientists attempt coding challenges and contests that measure them—in real time—for speed, accuracy, completeness and elegance of their work. In turn, potential employers can invite individual high-ranked coders to attempt challenges, or host open contests to find candidates who meet their score requirements.

The company’s corporate product is HackerRankX, a platform that streamlines the technical interviewing process to save companies time.

Together, the two products replace resume-based screening with skills-based screening. It fits coding where objective skill is pretty easy to measure, but doesn’t work for things like marketing or client facing jobs.

The company recently raised $9.2 million in funding from Khosla Ventures and Battery Ventures.

The platform’s database of programmers is nearly half a million strong, and 50,000 visit each month. Corporate clients include Facebook (which has a long standingculture of code competitions), Yahoo, Amazon, Morgan Stanley, Bloomberg, Evernote, and Square. HackerRank was the first Indian company to be accepted into YCombinator.

“Our vision is to build a complete skills graph of all the hackers around the globe—that’s like the core problem,” co-founder and CEO Vivek Ravisankar tells Quartz.

The appeal to engineers is obvious: it’s an opportunity for anyone anywhere in the world to hone their skills, get a sense of how they stack up, and put themselves in front of companies. But more broadly, it’s an attempt to fix a fundamental issue in the way tech companies hire.

“A good resume does not directly correlate with the fact that you’re a good programmer, and vice versa,” says Ravisankar. “It doesn’t matter which school or which company or wherever you went, what matters is how skilled you are.”

HackerRank fits squarely into a movement towards bringing more quantitative datainto the hiring process. Ravishankar says his goal is to create a process where skill alone matters, and to give companies a streamlined, data-driven filter to identify “diamonds in the rough” and hire them quickly.

Hiring is surprisingly subjective, and things like a candidate’s attractiveness, school prestige, and traits shared with an interviewer play a bigger role than they should. A product that seeks to eliminate such biases has great appeal in Silicon Valley, a place that likes to think of itself as a meritocracy.

Reprinted with permission from Quartz. The original story can be found here

(Image via Undrey/

Threatwatch Alert

Stolen laptop

3.7M Hong Kong Voters' Personal Data Stolen

See threatwatch report


Close [ x ] More from Nextgov

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from
We think these reports might interest you:

  • It’s Time for the Federal Government to Embrace Wireless and Mobility

    The United States has turned a corner on the adoption of mobile phones, tablets and other smart devices, outpacing traditional desktop and laptop sales by a wide margin. This issue brief discusses the state of wireless and mobility in federal government and outlines why now is the time to embrace these technologies in government.

  • Featured Content from RSA Conference: Dissed by NIST

    Learn more about the latest draft of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance document on authentication and lifecycle management.

  • A New Security Architecture for Federal Networks

    Federal government networks are under constant attack, and the number of those attacks is increasing. This issue brief discusses today's threats and a new model for the future.

  • Going Agile:Revolutionizing Federal Digital Services Delivery

    Here’s one indication that times have changed: Harriet Tubman is going to be the next face of the twenty dollar bill. Another sign of change? The way in which the federal government arrived at that decision.

  • Software-Defined Networking

    So many demands are being placed on federal information technology networks, which must handle vast amounts of data, accommodate voice and video, and cope with a multitude of highly connected devices while keeping government information secure from cyber threats. This issue brief discusses the state of SDN in the federal government and the path forward.

  • The New IP: Moving Government Agencies Toward the Network of The Future

    Federal IT managers are looking to modernize legacy network infrastructures that are taxed by growing demands from mobile devices, video, vast amounts of data, and more. This issue brief discusses the federal government network landscape, as well as market, financial force drivers for network modernization.


When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.