We want to introduce you the interview with Andreas Venieris- IT Director of Care Direct SA - a BTL Advertising & Digital Marketing Company.
He will tell you about the recruitment process in this company. Why is it worth to work as an IT Specialist in Care Direct SA Greece.
Andreas Venieris- Andreas holds a MSc in Artificial Intelligence from department of Computer Science from Queen Mary College - University of London and a BSc in Statistics from University of Piraeus. He was a PhD candidate with a scholarship in Department of Informatics of University of Piraeus in thesis “Architecture of an intelligent and secure database record”.
He has contributed to the design and implementation of several management information systems for both commercial, industrial and web fields, for more than 10 years. He has worked in Software houses as well as Information Consultant Companies such as: ABC Professional Services (at Piraeus Bank), IMS Informatics (at Τoyota Greece), Industrial Technologies SA, Greek Telecommunication Organization (OTE) and currently he is IT Director of Care Direct SA - a BTL Advertising & Digital Marketing Company. He is a member of the Economic Chamber Of Greece as well as the Greek Organization Of Scientists and Professionals of Informatics and Telecommunications. He likes programming and he is a computer security hobbyist and enthusiast.
Patrycja: What is the main objective of recruitment in your company? What do you want to achieve?
Andreas V.: Although my company’s main objective is mostly the marketing, I will focus to the main objectives of the IT department since I am responsible of.
Technically speaking, for every position we published, we create two lists of requirements: a list of must-have and list and a nice-to have requirements. A candidate must satisfy 100% the must-have requirements and as much as possible of the nice-to-have. A very important aspect that will be counted equally along with requirements is the professional ethics and candidate’s performance under certain circumstances. According to the interview we check, how (and at what degree) affect the candidate’s performance things like working under pressure, overtime working, salary delays etc.
For every new employee in IT department we will try to achieve many things that depend on the specific position. As a base, we try to achieve the following:
-We prefer employees that have prior professional knowledge on topics that we count as strategic for current or future company’s moves.
-Every employee will be assimilated in our team, which means that he/she will learn every technical detail we have develop so far.
-As a result of the above, the employee will share his/her knowledge and experience with all the members of our team.
The last two, will give to our team an opportunity to be more experienced, robust and be aligned to new technology aspects satisfying and (most important) leading the technology company’s requirements.
P:What qualifications, experience is required to become a part of your IT team? How do you check candidate's skills?
A: As I note above, the qualification depend on the specific position. Generally speaking, we are interested on mid to high experienced developers specialized on many areas (web, e-shopping, mobile, databases) as well as system administrator and web administrators.
We will develop a specific questionnaire that matches any position we publish. According to the interview face we ask questions in a discussion fashion. We don’t want to ask student-level questions or ask the candidate to do exercises on white board. We believe that this is an old fashion approach that will not expose any real talent. On the other hand, the questions we ask are such that will expose most of advantages and disadvantages of the candidate for the specific job according to our requirements.
P: How do you manage the recruitment?
A: There will be 4 to 5 interviews, 30 to 60 minutes each. The 1st one is with HR and COO following 2 interviews with IT people and COO and the last with the HR, COO, IT and the CEO of the company.
P: Do you have separated person for recruiting hackers?
A: Computer security guys (if needed) used as outsourcing to perform white and black box attacks to test the company’s infrastructure. We prefer specialized companies to do this. According to my involvement to the security I am the person to interview these guys and to suggest to the company’s board the most appropriate one.
P: Do your employees must work in office or there is possibility to work remotely?
A: Working in office is obligatory. In addition, remote working is also obligatory too since most of our departments located in many countries. The source point of work is most of the time (90%) to our HQ in Athens Greece for many reasons (and yes, security is one of them).
P: How long lasts recruitment?
A: The recruitment procedure lasts 2 to 3 weeks per published position.
P: How does the recruitment process look like?
A: As I noted above, we do not except (and we don’t want) the candidate to solve elementary information technology problems such as to find the greatest common divisor or to implement a recursive algorithm (in lisp!!) to implement the Fibonacci method.
We like the candidate to relax and to feel free in order to express his/her real talent. To measure the candidate’s reactions under pressure or other factors we use less obvious and more relaxing ways like simple questions and free discussion. Interviewing in our company is not like university exams while our company is not a… university.
P:What problems do you meet during recruitments, any hard issues?
A: Many times interviewers wrongly following some general rules (or expressions) that many recruiting companies instruct them that is a “must”. This makes our decision-making procedure more difficult since the candidate is not his/her self and sometime tells us lies or at least exaggerating. Some very common mistakes are:
-They answer “yes I know this” in every question. The candidate must know that there is nothing wrong if you are a programmer and you never program in PHP or even C#.
-Their experience seems disproportionate according to their age and the duration of their studies. Example: a 23 y.o. candidate with MSC in Computer Science declared in his/her CV, a 5 years professional experience in C++.
-The university experience is not considered as working experience unless you working at the university.
Other times seems difficult to find senior level programmers that are good professionals on specific topics. There are cases that only the 5% of the CVs we receive met
the requirements of the specific position and most of them failed due to other factors.