Programmer Test

A programmer test helps organisations and clients assess whether candidates seeking roles within their development teams have the skills and aptitudes necessary to be successful.

  • What is a programmer test?

    A programmer test aims to determine whether a candidate has sufficient knowledge in coding and programming principles to build applications and software using their skills and aptitude.

    The test uses multiple-choice questions to evaluate a range of coding concepts needed to perform well in the role, as well as identifying cultural fit and personality traits.

    Performing well on this test demonstrates a candidate has the required traits and abilities to perform well at the level needed within a development or engineering team.

    The test is becoming more commonly used to ensure candidates are competent and possess the right skill sets needed to work well within teams.

About the Programmer Test

Programmers are an integral part of most software companies – whether developments teams are remote or in an office. A programmer must write lines of code to support the ever-changing needs and requirements of a software business, which is why it's so important to make the right choice when hiring.

The programmer test assesses whether a candidate possesses the required knowledge and skills to write code and problem-solve successfully, so you shortlist the right candidates.

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  • Why should you use a programmer test for recruiting?

    Programmer positions often require certain traits, competencies and skills to perform well. Traditional methods of recruitment such as CV and application reviews are not that effective when it comes to assessing candidates skillsets, as applications tend to be weighted more towards experience than skill.

    A programmer test empowers recruiters to screen candidates with more precision providing them with valuable insight and data. This makes it easier to shortlist candidates and helps reduce bias in the early stages of recruitment.

    Job roles a programmer test would be suitable for include:

Picked Sample Report

View a sample report

Results for the Programmer Test along with other assessments the candidate takes will be compiled to produce a candidate report. The report is automatically generated and available both online and as a downloadable pdf so they can be shared with other team members and employees alike.

How our test assesses programming skills

Candidates will need to answer a range of questions that measure industry-specific technical skills where applicable (e.g. programming tests), soft skills (e.g. time management), aptitude (e.g. error checking) and relevant personality dimensions (e.g. team orientation). The results present a holistic view of how well suited each candidate is for the job at hand, using a data-driven approach.

The format varies by type of question, including multiple-choice for aptitude and technical skills, situational judgement for soft skills and agreement on a Likert scale for the personality dimensions. This approach ensures candidates are being assessed in an accurate and fair manner, and that results reflect the true underlying qualities of each candidate.

The characteristics, abilities and knowledge necessary to be a programmer were identified using the US Department of Labor's comprehensive O*NET database. O*NET is the leading source of occupational information that is constantly updated by collecting data from employees in specific job roles.

During the development process, test questions were rigorously analysed to maximise reliability and validity in line with industry best practices. They were created by our team of I/O psychologists and psychometricians – who collaborated with subject-matter-experts – and field-tested with a representative sample of job applicants who have varying experience, just like you might find in a talent pool.

Each test is reviewed by a panel of individuals representing diverse backgrounds to check for any sensitivity, fairness, face validity and accessibility issues. This ensures each candidate has a fair chance of demonstrating their true level of expertise.

Our programmer test is monitored to ensure it is up-to-date and optimised for performance.


Predictor of job success

Picked provides evidence-based recommendations for tests to use for over 750 jobs. Our recommendation engine leverages data from the Occupational Information Network (O*NET) developed by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA).


Access real assessments

Instant access to our full testing suite.

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    Fully accredited

    All our Programmer tests are written by accredited psychologists and fully validated.

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    For all levels

    We offer Programmer tests for all levels so you can assess all roles within your organisation.


Energize selection process

Streamline hiring with our out-of-the-box tools.

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    Smart automations

    Automated actions such as alerts and reminders ensure a smooth candidate experience.

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    Instant results

    Receive candidate results in real-time so you can make decisions in hours, not days.


Make better hires

Improve hiring with bias-free, data-driven decisions.

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    Analytics dashboard

    Our full array of candidate performance metrics will provide actionable data on each of your candidates.

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    Candidate comparison

    Simple, easy-to-use candidate comparison reports mean you don’t need to be a psychologist to interpret them.

“We used Picked as part of our Finance Graduate Scheme recruitment and it was just what we needed – really simple to send candidates the link to complete and clear to see how they all compared. And great value for money!”
Christina, HR Director, Cancer Research, UK
Christina, HR Director, Cancer Research, UK
Programmer Test expert

Written by a Programmer Test expert

Our team of assessment experts is made up of I/O psychologists and psychometricians who are dedicated to making all of our tests as reliable, valid and fair as possible. They strictly adhere to best practices in the industry and stay on top of the latest innovations to ensure job candidates’ unique profiles of characteristics, abilities and knowledge are being measured accurately while minimising bias. They leverage decades of research and advanced predictive analytics to build assessments that link to outcomes that matter, such as job performance, turnover, engagement, culture fit and more.

“Personality profiling allowed us to perform lookalike modelling of our most successful employees and use this as a blueprint for new hires.”
Nick, HR Operations, Airbus, Spain
Nick, HR Operations, Airbus, Spain


What are the key skills to be a programmer?

Programming is a broad role that requires many key skills such as:

  • Coding knowledge
  • Problem-solving
  • Mathematical skills
  • Problem-solving skills
  • Self-starter
  • Attention to detail
What other tests are useful to assess programming skills?

Programming requires a number of coding skills that could be useful to test for beforehand.

Coding tests that might be useful to test includes:

HTML5 PHP JavaScript Lavarel C#

Can I get a free trial?

Yes, sign up (no credit card required) and we'll give you a 7 day trial completely free. You'll get unlimited access to create as many jobs and test as many candidates as you like. You can cancel any time and you won't be charged anything.

What is the cost for Picked's programmer test?

We believe in simple, transparent pricing. We operate monthly and annual subscriptions so you can pick the perfect plan for you. Don't worry if you're not sure: you can always upgrade or downgrade later, or speak to us to discuss the option of a custom made plan to fit your needs. This is all you ever pay – no set-up or hidden fees.

“Focusing on data reduced the subjective decision making from our hiring process and allowed us to reduce bias and make better hiring decisions.”
Izzie, Head of HR, iZettle, Sweden
Izzie, Head of HR, iZettle, Sweden

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