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Re: Brainbench tests (response to post by Krzysan) | Reply
Anybody else recently got emails like "My name is XXX and I am a recruiting representative at Microsoft. I recently came across your name on Brainbench and would like to consider you for technical positions at Microsoft." ? I already got several this week - it seems that Brainbench is getting even more popular among Microsoft recruiters than I originally thought.
Re: Brainbench tests (response to post by Krzysan) | Reply
I got one a few months ago.
Re: Brainbench tests (response to post by Krzysan) | Reply
You're right on that count, except I'd go one step farther. Brainbench tests, for any top employer, are only helpful for the most junior candidates, and even that's questionable. A resume, as a headhunter knows, is not a marketing tool. It's a summary of experienced tailored in such a way that it won't put the candidate out of contention for the job. That is: A resume may get a person an interview, but it's rare. Most often, it's connections that set up that first round. If a potential employer sees Brainbench scores on the CV, it looks like the candidate is trying to sell his/her abilities. There is a perception in this industry, whether right or wrong, that a great programmer should have that swagger that says "I've got nothing to prove that an interview won't prove for me."
Re: Brainbench tests (response to post by Krzysan) | Reply
Well, as a headhunter named XXX myself, I take great offense to the person at Microsoft who is trying to cut in on my racket.
Re: Brainbench tests (response to post by SCohn) | Reply
A resume may get a person an interview, but it's rare. Most often, it's connections that set up that first round.

Maybe for more senior people.. but straight out of college when you have no connections? I've been through at least 7 company interviews, and I only got 2 of those interviews because of referrals by people I knew working at the company. For the other 5, I did no more than send my resume.
Re: Brainbench tests (response to post by Minilek) | Reply
I agree. Especially coming out of college, you don't really know anyone, so the connections things doesn't really play any factors.
Sending my resume got looks for getting interviews for Google, Microsoft, Amazon, HP, Intel, and Lehman Brothers, to name a few. Not that I am good, but sending my resume did initiate an interview like Minilek said. Also, I did not attend a school that was even close to a Top 10 school as others. That's possibly the reason why the looks are hard to get, but you tend to get them.

Would anyone like to comment on the latter part of my statement? I'm not even in the top 50% of Topcoder members, though for most of the interviews, you don't really have to be that great...maybe that speaks for the lack of intelligence in the CS fields nowadays? (Well except MS and Google)
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