What 112k+ Coding Tests Taught us About the State of the Technical Recruitment Industry


Last year, 112,654 developers sat some kind of coding test that was made with our platform.

They may have been a security expert or a blockchain enthusiast, a front-end developer or a DevOps engineer. Or just about any kind of tech role in between. But what you can be sure about, is that with this amount of data, we were privy to some pretty interesting insights.

After assessing this data, we quickly realized that what we were seeing was information that could help the wider community. Whether it was about recruiting from abroad, or the specific languages that were tested, we learned a lot.

And we put it all together into one nice neat little package. The Devskiller Global Technical Hiring & Skills Report 2019.

To give you a little sneak peek, here are a few things we learned from it:

Java is the most popular language devs are tested in (37%)

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Java is popular - very popular. And if you’ve been in the tech recruitment industry for more than a few years, this should come as no surprise to you. The importance and popularity of Java as a language is reflected in the results of the TIOBE Programming Community Index, a tool many companies use to make decisions about programming language choice.

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SQL comes in a close second, while JavaScript makes up the top 3.

It’s important to note that multiple technologies can be tested alongside each other. Thanks to this, we noticed that front-end technologies are often paired with HTML/CSS and back-end is synonymous with SQL skills.

Many developers will get a front-end technical skills assessment, regardless of their main focus

JavaScript is the leading technology when talking about frontend. JavaScript is present in 5 of the 8 technologies most often tested together.

JavaScript, combined with CSS and HTML make up the core languages and technologies for a front-end developer. But JavaScript is also regularly tested alongside .NET, PHP and Java. This shows us that it’s important in both back and front-end roles.

Up next with 4 mentions is SQL. In the following image, you can see that alongside the main skills needed for a position, database technical skills are also required.

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Candidates wait on average 2.88 days to take a coding test

With the wealth of data we had at our fingertips, we were able to find some trends that weren’t tech specific. For example, it takes about 3 days for a developer to do a test, and they’re more likely to do this during the week than over the weekend. This is reflected in the fact that:

  1. Tests send on Tuesday get the fastest response
  2. Tests send on Wednesday get the slowest response and
  3. The average turn around is 2.88 days (69.23 hours).

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This is information that you can use to improve the way that you recruit. If you can plan your week as to have interviews on Monday and send follow-up tests Tuesday, you’re able to push through reliable and talented developers and cut off those that waste your time.

Your industry peers are working hard to develop domain expertise

It makes sense that a good recruiter is aware of the skills they’re hiring for. But a great recruiter knows the basics of the job they’re hiring for. In the world of tech recruiting, an HR specialist that knows a thing or two about coding is a very highly sought after asset.

That’s why more and more tech recruiters are learning about the industry in which they recruit talent. A committed IT recruiter now has some basic skills and qualifications in the development world.

Qualifications like Devskiller’s own Tech Recruitment Certification Course are proving to be a valuable item to have on the CV of an HR recruiter for one simple reason - they know what they’re recruiting for.

Recruiters are also taking their time to learn, study and bring them self up to speed with development skills. Most people who sit our recruitment test pass on the first attempt.

So, one can safely assume that your peers are also educating themselves about the skills they’re regularly hiring - which, in turn, helps them make better decisions and create higher-quality hires.

India sends more developers overseas than the US

It shouldn’t surprise you that the home of Silicone Valley, Apple and San Francisco, is the home to a lot of exported developers. The US developers are sought after all over the world but they are not the biggest source.

Indian developers make up over 25% of talent that’s picked up by international countries, whether Indians are highest by behemoths like the US or smaller countries like the Netherlands or Switzerland.

America does, however, come in second place when it comes to sending talent abroad. This is thanks to one fact - the sheer number of developers that the culture and environment creates.

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90% of the coding tests sent are completed

Tests made on the Devskiller platform consists of tasks and problems common to those common in the day-to-day life of a developer.

This is due to the simple fact that developers perform best when they know there will be no unexpected surprises or difficult questions. 90% of the tests started are completed with developers form some countries like Latvia completing as many as 98% of the tests they start.

By ensuring that the tests you send are actionable and relevant to the day-to-day tasks of your current developers, you can be sure that you’ll hire the most talented developer in a quick and timely manner.


Regardless of the tech role that you’re hiring for, there are some simple facts and actionable insights mentioned above that can be implemented all over your business.

Lack of experienced and diversified talent pools is only going to make the current skills shortage even worse.

Tech recruiters need to leverage trends like those found in the Devskiller report to make sure a skill shortage doesn’t cripple their talent pool.

Take a deeper dive into the trends, patterns, and habits of other tech recruiters in the: Devskiller Global Technical Hiring & Skills Report 2019.

Author Bio


Tom Winter

Tom Winter is the CRO at Devskiller, a developer screening & online interviews in one platform powered by RealLifeTesting™. Madly in love with everything tech, Tom specializes in streamlining the hiring process of tech talent and data-driven recruitment. He’s also an avid conference speaker.

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Thanks for reading and see you next time!

Your team here at skeeled


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