My specific situation is based on finding a jack-of-all-trades employee in Software Engineering or IT, but the core question can apply to more than a few areas.
Over 7 years ago I was hired by a mid-sized company that had a small IT team of 3 people. My initial responsibilities were to design and write a major corporate n-tier application. Today, I am responsible for maintaining and writing new software projects, troubleshooting servers (both hardware and enterprise software), managing databases and much more.
There is a chance that soon I will have the opportunity to hire a new employee to take care of most of these responsibilities because they are secondary to my current title of being an Embedded Systems Engineer. Yes,I've worn a lot of hats around here! We would be looking to hire a person to take on all of the IT & software related work so I can return to my primary job but that person will still need to perform as a jack-of-all-trades IT worker.
When I think about hiring this person, the primary competencies that come to mind are:
- ...a very good understanding of general computing and software development principles.
- ...a tenacity to manage IT infrastructure that "just works" for its users.
- ...the ability to use one or two tools well but isn't a guru in every tool.
- ...ability to learn how to use new tools and write excellent software through continual self-education.
These are broad competencies and make for a job description that isn't as specific as most descriptions for IT workers.
This leads to a bit of a hiring problem because weeding out the pool of potential applicants by resumes and then asking the right questions for the right hire is a bit intimidating since bullet-points aren't as important as personality.
The specific questions I have are:
- What are some effective techniques for finding a good jack-of-all trades? In my case, a jack-of-all-trades IT professional that can both code well and manage infrastructure?
- What should I look for in resumes and what type of general questions should I ask in interviews?