Visual Basic

The Offer

Once all the assessments are complete, the interview team needs to get together immediately to consolidate the information and make decisions. People who haven't made the grade should be informed as soon as possible. We normally do this over the phone and explain the reasoning behind the decision and give plenty of feedback. This is nearly always appreciated, so long as it is done in a positive and constructive way. We also take the opportunity to listen to what the candidate thought of us. We find this approach much better than a brief "thanks, but no thanks" letter.

For people we would like to employ, we always phone and discuss our level of interest and listen to their views. If there is a match, we discuss the remuneration package and reach verbal agreement. (This might take more than one call, obviously.) We follow up in writing as soon as verbal agreement is reached.

You might be left with a strong impression that it is extremely difficult to get a job at TMS. We put candidates through a lot! We are aware that we might be missing out on excellent developers by this very stringent selection process. We realize that many techies are primadonnas and are not prepared to go through all of this when they believe that they can walk into any large corporation and get a job. But for those who persevere, we believe TMS is a good company to work for, and part of the reason for this lies in how we treat our staff once they are with us and the perks we provide: Personal Development Plans (PDPs), regular 1:1s, performance reviews, regular market research on salaries, our family atmosphere, our company culture, our beliefs and values, our commitment to training and development, the opportunities to be exposed to leading edge technology, and so forth. That takes us to step three.

Step 3: Retaining Great Developers

Too often, staff can be forgotten once they've been recruited. It's important to have a well-planned induction process and an ongoing career development process. Once you've hired someone you usually don't want to lose him or her! This employee cost a lot of money to find and train and, after a surprisingly short period of time, accumulates an intrinsic worth that's hard to quantify-the employee's knowledge is of high value (for example, they know how the company operates and all about its clients). All in all, you really don't want to lose good people. One of the ways to address this issue is to realize why people up and leave. People generally do this because:

  • They're not being rewarded in a manner commensurate with the effort they're expending

  • They feel they're not valued in some other way

  • They're not being stimulated or challenged in their current role

  • They're not getting the recognition they feel they deserve

  • They can't see how to progress within the organization (or feel that they can't progress, period)

There are other reasons, of course. Typically, remuneration is not the main reason people leave; so long as they're getting a fair rate and they don't have any of the above complaints, they're happy.