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Re: Some help for interviewing



Quoting Shane J Pearson (shane_(_at_)_flashbsd_(_dot_)_net):
> On Tue, 9 Dec 2003 10:14:07 -0500
> "Alex J. Avriette" <alex_(_at_)_posixnap_(_dot_)_net> wrote:
> 
> > "and their answers"? What are you doing asking these people questions
> > that will result in their getting (or not getting) hired if you don't
> > know the answers to them?!
> 
> I know someone who was denied a position, because when he was asked to
> name some networking protocols, he failed to mention NetBEUI.
> 
> Managers and other interviewers who don't know about the position
> they're trying to fill, perpetuate the sad state of affairs which exists
> with candidates. They not only entertain the clueless, they hire them.

And I was asked to describe the difference between pop3 and pop2.
(got the gig anyhow).

The biggest issue is often getting to be interviewed by people
not reciting from a list, but who understand what the answers are.
Sometimes I need a guy who knows AIX 5.x really well.  Most of
the time, I want someone who is an able system admin.

And yes, when a resume says "Senior Admin" but they know ONE
Unix, I'll grill them hard.  Being fucntional with 3-4 unixes
generally means they understand the platonic form of "unix"
(SCO notwithstanding).

But I've done phone interviews where I hear book pages being rifled.

Offhand do I recall the order of headers in a BIND zone file?  No,
but I have 200 on my machiens to glance at.  I'd much rahter the
person demonstrate that they understand how to debug subsystems.

Machine.  You ping a machine off your net.  50% failure.  Go.
Ah yeah, there are 2 interfaces. 

I don't care if you say "look at the routing table" or "netstat -r".


Many people fail at quizes.  I do.  Port for lpr?
 "er, grep print /etc/services"
Why would I fill my brain with that crap?
How did I deploy 50 desktop unix boxes in an evening?  Let me run through it.


If someone does well at rote questions, you may end up with a rote system
admin.  "Sorry, I can't reset the terminal servers; I don't have a procedure
for that."   Likewise, if you want a hot shot cowboy, you're going to clean
up after him.  ("I think he was running some IDE program he had, let me see
if I can find it...").

The balance is in between.

I'd rather have a good System Administrator who doesn't know OpenBSD
than a rigid operator who only uses OpenBSD and won't touch anything
else.  One of them can learn.