Tech Hiring @ Headout

There's been some interest and more confusion regarding Headout's hiring process for engineering. And I only see it increasing from day to day. This is a minimal list that tries to (but doesn't) sum up what we look for in our next hires.

Let's establish some ground rules for this post:

  • These are just some pointers and NOT the holy book.
  • This is a developmental list. But when something changes, I will come back (hopefully, soon enough) and change the content here.

Perfect candidate syndrome

Let me try to jot down what has been in our mind till now. Each role requires its own set of skills or expertise. But there are some common pointers that go along with all of our engineering roles.

Logic-Algo-DS (and anything that you want to include)

You need not know a particular algorithm or a fancy data structure. But we think if you are a logical guy, you can generalize the problem, break it into pieces and solve it. None of our problems require you to think of an algorithm from the other side.

The one who 'did-doing-does'

Simple way to put it - "Have you worked on anything by yourself till date?". This is something we strongly believe in. We count experience by your learning curve not your work-years in MNCs. Our culture is built around this. (Internal hackathons, personal and pet projects for the win!)

Hiring funnel

Let me run through some important stages of our hiring process (which change every other month). Some disclaimers:

  • These might not occur in the order that they appear
  • Every one might not go through each stage
  • The entire process (with all the stages) will not take more than a day
Programming test

We love competitive programming. If you come to our pad, you will see us shooting programming questions at each other all the time. If you are someone like us, we would love to see you solve some interesting problems in our online challenge. (I am yet to meet a person who has 2+ years experience and does this! If you are that person, see EndNotes.)

Interview - 1

Typically, we have a first round for 45mins - 1hour. It strongly focuses on Algo/DS/Logical domain. And also we would like to hear about your personal projects and expectations from the role.

Interview - 2

Second round takes ~2 hours on average. Along with logical thinking, we will be focusing on design. By design, we don't mean abstract painting. These will be architecture design questions relevant to the role that you are applying to. This is also the place where we discuss domain level problems.

To help you and us

  • Do we ask logical questions for all the roles? - Yes
  • Do we ask logical questions for all the experience levels? - Yes
  • What matters more? Your current work projects vs your personal projects? - Your personal projects by a mile.
  • Are we looking for project managers? - not yet.

What will you be working on?

  • Big words: Hit our careers page
  • Simple words: Depends on the domain you want to work on (read again. depends on the domain not role)
    • Front end: Revamping our web app
    • Back end: Building infra for our recommendation engine
    • Android: Making our to-be-released-in-2weeks app the best with conversational UI
    • iOS: Making our featured-twice-in-app-store app the best with conversational UI
    • Data Analyst: Building first-cut tools to convert our product gut-calls to data driven decisions
    • Data Scientist: Build our recommendation engine
    • Full Stack: (This is just to list). Any of the above.

End note:

  • If you've stuck along this long and are thinking, "Damn! This is what I am looking for!", ping me at or get connected on LinkedIn. Let's grab a beer sometime.
  • If you are thinking you can crack our process but not convinced enough to apply, ping me. I pitch better on phone :P
  • Either way, join us in the interview. They are pretty fun (disclaimer: 95% success rate on what I just said)
  • Hiring is a tough nut to crack. If you are playing with the problem as much and have interesting insights to share, let's talk and hire better.


PS: Just found this blog while searching for some fun tech comics to go with the post. Cool stuff.
Geek & Code

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