Every day, senior developers solve complex problems. Hence, the assessment that is most representative of senior developers' natural work environment will be the most appropriate. Find a case that illustrates the daily challenges faced by senior developers.
Using frameworks and libraries on your team will allow you to see if the candidate is comfortable using them. The candidate also gets the chance to experience the company's coding process.
Technical skills can be evaluated in three ways:
1. Time-boxed online coding assignment
Real-time evaluation of technical knowledge using this methodology is time-saving and efficient.
You can find coding challenges online on hundreds of websites. To use frameworks and libraries, you can try Coderbyte. Framework Science has Coderbyte’s vast testing libraries integrated into the industry's first Remote Team Management system to build effective engineering teams with greater accuracy and at the velocity required in the U.S.
If the candidate is coding, they can share their screen and explain what they are doing. Try to think of it more as a team effort than a skill test.
Online coding tests may not reflect the daily work required in the role.
2. The technical interview
Generally, a conversation about a senior engineer's technical interests and recent projects will give a deeper understanding of their technical background. An additional formal skill assessment might not be necessary in some cases.
3. An assignment to be completed at home
Time and dedication are required for both sides of this evaluation method.
There is a deadline (usually up to a week), and a candidate is given a simple task to make an app or refactor some code.
To make sure a candidate knows the exact style of writing code that corresponds to the code quality gates used in your team, you may want to have them do a take-home assignment. It isn't always necessary to check this before hiring since a competent senior can adapt to the team's style when joining the team.
Take-home assignments require senior developers to spend hours (approximately 2-4 hours) writing a test on top of their regular job responsibilities. It can also be detrimental to lose a candidate if you leave them on their own for a week. This is because they may accept an offer from someone else.
The candidate should be able to complete the assessment quickly and without any pain. People will appreciate it if you do not waste their time.