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It’s true what they say, “finding a job is a full-time job.” After all, as the hiring process becomes more global and recruiters are constantly inundated with an influx of applications, on the other end of that equation are the candidates submitting those applications, who grow weary as the days go by with no response.

As with most things, processes change over time, but, with some technical exceptions, the hiring process has mostly remained the same. Until now. Vivek Ravisankar felt called to address the pain points of hiring after speaking with a recruiter. a

“I remember walking up to a recruiter one day and asking, ‘Hey, can you tell me how this whole recruiting process works?’ He pulled out his Macbook and he had two folders: pass and fail. He would look at a resume for 10-15 seconds and determine which folder [the resume] was actually going to go into. I was thinking, ‘Man, you have way too much power in your hands.’ But I can also understand and empathize with them because if you’re Amazon, you don’t have a better way to do it either. So that was a trigger point. This needs to be fixed.”

The fix came in the form of HackerRank, a platform that helps developers put skills over pedigree. On this episode of IT Visionaries, Vivek explains what that means, and how it helps developers stand out from the crowd. Plus he explains  the dangers of utilizing A.I. throughout the hiring process and why distributed workforces are great for company diversity.

Main Takeaways

  • Supply and Demand: As companies continue to trend towards software companies, developers currently remain one of the most sought after candidates. However, that trend is drastically changing as the number of companies that employ developers rise.
  • A.I. Is Not A Magic Pill: When it comes to the hiring process, A.I. should be used as a way to streamline your workflow, but not as an indicator of if a person is fit for a particular job or an identifier of their hard skills. Instead, use the technology to identify if candidates have similar skills to past hires and then sort them into individual piles to accelerate the process.
  • Whatcha Going to Do With all That…Data: Data is what fuels HackerRank’s platform insights. In order to build a comprehensive candidate profile, the company conducts hundreds of thousands of challenges and assessments a day. The data that is then gathered, sorted and distributed to help construct a candidate profile, but is also used as a learning tool for each applicant to better understand where they rank amongst their peers.

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For a more in-depth look at this episode, check out the article below.


It’s true what they say, “finding a job is a full-time job.” After all, as the hiring process becomes more global and recruiters are constantly inundated with an influx of applications, on the other end of that equation are the candidates submitting those applications, who grow weary as the days go by with no response.

As with most things, processes change over time, but, with some technical exceptions, the hiring process has mostly remained the same. Until now. Vivek Ravisankar felt called to address the pain points of hiring after speaking with a recruiter. a

“I remember walking up to a recruiter one day and asking, ‘Hey, can you tell me how this whole recruiting process works?’ He pulled out his Macbook and he had two folders: pass and fail. He would look at a resume for 10-15 seconds and determine which folder [the resume] was actually going to go into. I was thinking, ‘Man, you have way too much power in your hands.’ But I can also understand and empathize with them because if you’re Amazon, you don’t have a better way to do it either. So that was a trigger point. This needs to be fixed.”

The fix came in the form of HackerRank, a platform that helps developers put skills over pedigree. On this episode of IT Visionaries, Vivek explains what that means, and how it helps developers stand out from the crowd. Plus he explains  the dangers of utilizing A.I. throughout the hiring process and why distributed workforces are great for company diversity.

Hackerranks is a full-service end-to-end platform that helps companies create their own customized “challenges” for job seekers rather than accepting traditional resumes. The process, Ravisankar said, is designed to help those organizations to not only put an emphasis on applicants’ skill, but rather to have a better understanding of their skill level prior to screening them.

Ravisankar said these challenges help to streamline a three-step hiring cycle that begins with the pre-hire phase, where developers can go to the HackerRank’s website and prepare for interview by taking similar challenges, all the way to the post-hire phase which occurs after an applicant has secured an offer. Each offer helps Hackerrank have a better understanding of the skills a candidate needs and the requirements the employer is looking for in a hire. 

“What are my gaps and how do I up-skill the workforce or augmented external hiring,” he said. “Now we can think about this whole suite of products that span across the entire lifecycle journey of a developer, starting from preparing and applying for jobs to the post-hire and the common thread that connects all these products is what we call the developer skill platform.”

The first version of HackerRank was a company called InterviewStreet, a platform designed by Ravisankar, geared towards the developer. Interviewstreet helped developers prepare for interviews with coaching from industry personnel, but the platform ran into some key problems — especially when it came to scale and efficiency. 

In order for a business designed to help developers crack the interview code, Vivek said they needed to be doing hundreds of thousands of interviews a day or a month, but instead they were maybe doing 10 a quarter. So they changed the model, and instead of catering to job seekers, they provided companies that were seeking candidates to utilize their platform.

So with so much data and insights from the hiring process, what areas are companies focusing on?

“I think every company has their own version of what areas they are going to attach a higher weight or a focus on,” he said.. “You start to understand the scale competence at a certain companies that you can actually measure in an automated way that can give you a good signal as to how proficient this person is on this skill. Now when you send an assessment and then as a hiring manager, instead of looking at a resume, now you get a candidate scorecard, which lists their level of skills. And here is where this person falls under different proficiency levels.”

Hiring reform is what HackerRank is built upon, but Ravisankar wanted to be clear that these assessments and challenges are not a replacement for actual performance and the intricacies that go into offering a candidate a position. But what they are designed to do is help employers make better judgments, while helping them identify what technical skills are needed, without relying on A.I.

‘I believe you can get a lot of signals from A.I. on the hard skills, but on the soft skills,” he said. “I will not allow A.I. to help me know if I need to talk to you or if I need to get a sense of  how it was to work with you and things. The areas that we focused on, hard skills, we make sure that we can actually give you a pretty high signal.”

At HackerRank A.I. is used more as a predictor for a person’s fit with a company, rather than a judgement on their abilities. They also use past hiring process to help candidates understand why they are and are not a fit and then those candidates can use those case studies as a road map to how they can eventually get an interview.

“The state of A.I. mostly as a piece of recruiting is more of automating existing workflows and just making you more productive,” Ravisankar said. “It’s not at the point where it can solve your deeper rooted issues. Like what skills and abilities you have within your organization.”  

To hear more about HackerRank and how they are revolutionizing the hiring process, checkout the full episode of IT Visionaries below.

To hear the entire discussion, tune into IT Visionaries here

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