Pair Programming Test Drive

An InterviewingStrategy for XP where you evaluate a candidate by putting them through a few hours of PairProgramming, possibly working on actual tasks for the current iteration.

A few hours? I might accept 30 minutes to an hour, but you are asking the candidate to work for free, essentially, if you expect them to sit down and pair with one of your team on current project tasks for more than that. Perhaps someone fresh out of college could justify it, but for anyone with experience, you're taking time away from them with no compensation.

Yes, that's something of a problem. I got my current and immediate previous jobs through this sort of interview. I really enjoyed it -- it gave me a feel for what the actual work was like, and it gave the team a more realistic impression of me than a conventional interview. However, it is working for free, and I have a serious problem with that (I'm not just out of college...). I think employers should be encouraged to pay candidates for their time in cases like these. --MarnenLaibowKoser, 8 Oct 2011

These days, an interview that lasts four or more hours is not terribly uncommon for candidates of all levels.


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