Glenn Carstens-Peters developer

Tip Tips to reduce candidate drop out rates

Technical assessments are an essential part of the hiring process but they can also be one of the main causes of candidate drop-off.

Lots of customers come to us because they are seeing high numbers of their candidates drop out of their process, sometimes as many as 50%. With a well thought out process there is no reason you can’t get that down to ~20% drop out, perhaps even better.

Not the news you are looking for but there is no magic bullet here. Shorter code challenges are not the answer, neither is copying someone else’s process. Getting the process right takes a lot of time and effort (we’re here to help too of course)

Let’s look at Tech Assessments as they seem to be a major cause of friction.

Tech assessments are used to evaluate the skills and abilities of candidates and ensure that they have the necessary technical expertise to perform the job. However, the assessment process can be time-consuming and sometimes ineffective, leading to poor hiring decisions. In this blog post, we will discuss ways to improve your technical assessment process to make it more efficient and effective.

  1. Be clear about the process up front  and make it as streamlined as possible - One of the most common reasons candidates drop out of the hiring process is because of its length and complexity. Simplifying the process and reducing the number of steps can make it easier for candidates to navigate and increase their engagement in the process. Review your hiring process and look for opportunities to streamline it.
  2. Clearly Define the Job Requirements - Before you start assessing candidates, it’s essential to define the job requirements clearly. This includes the technical skills, experience, and knowledge required for the role. Without a clear understanding of what you’re looking for, you’ll struggle to evaluate candidates effectively. Make sure you have a job description that outlines the specific technical skills and experience required.
  3. Develop a Consistent Assessment Framework - Having a consistent assessment framework ensures that all candidates are evaluated using the same criteria. This helps to eliminate bias and ensures that candidates are assessed fairly. It’s essential to develop a framework that covers all the required technical skills and knowledge for the role. You can also include behavioral and communication skills to ensure that the candidate fits into your team culture.
  4. Use a Variety of Assessment Methods - Using a variety of assessment methods helps to evaluate candidates’ technical skills and knowledge more effectively. You can use online coding tests, technical interviews, whiteboard sessions, or even ask the candidate to complete a real-world project. Different methods allow you to evaluate different aspects of the candidate’s technical ability, providing a more comprehensive assessment. Here’s a page we wrote about two types of assessment we have at Geektastic.
  5. Keep the Assessment Realistic - When assessing candidates, it’s essential to keep the assessment realistic. Avoid asking candidates to solve problems that are unrealistic or not relevant to the job. Instead, focus on real-world problems that the candidate is likely to face in the role. This helps to evaluate the candidate’s ability to solve problems in a real-world environment.
  6. Provide Timely Feedback - Providing timely feedback to candidates is crucial. Candidates invest a lot of time and effort in the assessment process, and they deserve to know how they performed. Providing feedback also helps to improve the assessment process. You can ask candidates for feedback on the assessment process and use this to improve future assessments.
  7. Use clearly defined review guidelines - Assessors play a crucial role in the assessment process. They need to be trained to ensure that they are evaluating candidates fairly and consistently. They also need a clear set of pre-definied guidelines that are updated and recalibrated. Training assessors can help to eliminate bias and ensure that all candidates are assessed using the same criteria. Here’s a page we wrote about How to review a Code Challenge.
  8. Evaluate the Assessment Process Regularly - Evaluating the assessment process regularly helps to identify areas that need improvement. You can use candidate feedback, assessors’ feedback, and data on hiring outcomes to evaluate the effectiveness of the assessment process. Use this feedback to improve the process continually.


Improving your technical assessment process is essential for ensuring that you hire the best candidates for your team. By defining job requirements, developing a consistent assessment framework, using a variety of assessment methods, keeping the assessment realistic, providing timely feedback, training assessors, and evaluating the process regularly, you can create a more effective assessment process. This will help you to identify candidates with the necessary technical skills and expertise to perform the job and build a successful tech team.