These days, the IT industry is growing much faster than the number of skilled programmers available. That is why, along with conventional recruitment processes, it is equally, if not more, important to seek and reach talent in innovative ways – and to do so more rapidly than the competition can. Only those brands that can showcase their unique image in a new eye-catching way and, in so doing, capture the interest of those with exactly the right IT skills will find themselves positioned to attract the best future employees and guarantee sustained business development. This is especially the case in a sector that prides itself on the creation of evermore innovative solutions. Here we describe one such solution which saw incredible success.
The objective of the Samsung Algorithmic Challenge was primarily to reach and engage a specific group of specialized candidates with skills in the field of algorithmics and NLP. Eight dedicated SkillChallenges helped select IT specialists who could potentially join Samsung's R&D team in Warsaw or Krakow. Taking advantage of the capacity to pre-assess candidates' competences makes it possible to easily check whether their skills would fit the roles available. Here the specific aim was to pinpoint those who would be most suitable to work on current projects in the field of algorithmics and NLP and thus co-create software for Samsung Electronics products. These challenges represented an irresistible enticement for many of those most skilled at this work.
The main goals of the Samsung Algorithmic Challenge were:
- To build and engage a talent pool around the Samsung brand and its recruitment offer, composed of candidates interested in the subject of Natural Language Processing (NLP).
- To strengthen the positive image of Samsung as an IT employer who the best specialists in the industry would wish to work with.
- To offer NLP and algorithmics programmers a fascinating, customised experience with the brand, and gain instant insight into their skills thanks to the SkillChallenge formula.
- To be able to verify the candidates’ skills and test their ability to successfully pass a real interview at Samsung by going through a simulated technical interview.
The key to grabbing the attention of just the right profile of programmers was to create and involve them in a series of creative algorithmic and NLP tasks which stimulated interest in the brand's activities among high-level IT specialists. For this purpose, eight online programming challenges were used which included five algorithmic tasks (e.g. Samsung Challenge #1) and three NLP tasks (e.g. Samsung Challenge #2). The tasks were highly demanding and thereby allowed for the selection of top tier candidates in the technologies Samsung excels at.
The implementation of the Samsung Algorithmic Challenge involved:
- Building the commitment and engagement of potential candidates around the brand by establishing the dedicated Samsung Candidate Hub, i.e. a place where candidates can find new development opportunities and get the chance to familiarise themselves with the employer's brand better.
- Sparking the interest of specialized programmers in the brand and in the initiatives of Samsung R&D by launching a series of eight SkillChallenges online in the field of algorithmics and NLP.
- Operationalising the 100% online pre-assessment of skilled candidates and the selection of the best specialists for future and current positions.
The modern phenomenon of chronic shortages of talent is the most daunting hurdle in the area of recruitment faced by companies currently. Nowadays, to succeed in meeting tough hiring goals and to stand out in the market, the most crucial factors are the appeal of the employer's brand to candidates and the manner in which the brand reaches out to and engages candidates. To do so, we delivered a series of challenges for the Samsung brand.
The most significant outcomes of the Samsung Algorithmic Challenge were that:
- We engaged over 380 programmers – the candidates displayed their skills in algorithmics and NLP and joined a growing community gathered around the Samsung brand.
- 9 specialists demonstrated an exceptional level of skills in the field of algorithmics and NLP, obtaining a score of 100% in at least one of the SkillChallenges (at an advanced level of difficulty!).
- We reached 12,689 people, all showing keen interest in the Samsung Algorithmic Challenge ; by viewing these challenges, the brand's activities were made familiar to a large pool of professionals.
- The individual pages of eight SkillChallenges had a total of 10,255 visits within a month, drawing the attention of candidates to very involving and highly unusual tasks.
- We received 604 registrations for individual challenges from programmers, and 70% of these participants began the task of solving the challenges; this enabled Samsung to gain valuable insight into their skills in the area of algorithmics and NLP.
- An impressive 80% of participants showed interest in joining the recruitment process, which represents a rich pool of candidates for current and future recruitment purposes at Samsung.