FAQ for Candidates

What are the benefits of working at Nearsoft?

The primary benefit is personal growth. There are lots of opportunity for growing your technical skills. But also, and perhaps more importantly, there are lots of opportunity to grow personally.

You are going to be working with a group of very skilled and very wise people. And you’ll have the opportunity to learn from them and with them.

In more traditional terms,

  • We get 25 paid days off (see How many vacation days will I get?)
  • We have a training budget. This can be spent on trips to conferences and the like, not just traditional classroom training. This helps to keep us up to date with the latest and greatest technology.
  • We have a very simple book policy: send in the URL to the book you’re interested in, and we’ll get it. That’s it. Oh, and this is not limited to hardcore technology books (we have been known to buy a couple of book on neuroscience).
  • Everybody gets high performance desktops or laptops, at least two displays, and whatever other tools they may need. For example, these days we’re upgrading everybody to SSD drives.

How many vacation days will I get?

We all get 10 days of paid vacation and 10 holidays throughout the year. That’s typical stuff.

We also get five days of Personal Time Off (PTO). You can take time off for any reason or no reason at all. Just let the rest of us know, “taking PTO tomorrow morning.” Mostly these are used for personal appointments, child care, extensive car repairs, etc.

In practice, nobody keeps track of your time, except you. But everybody in your team will implicitly keep track your results, simply because they depend on you as you depend on them.

BTW, if you have a family emergency, go take care of your family. Take whatever time you need. We’ll worry about the formalities later.

Please, read about the context for these answers.

Why should you join Nearsoft?

You should join Nearsoft if you are convinced that doing so will help you grow and allow you to have a bigger impact on the world.

If you are looking for your next 9-to-5 “job,” or you want to do the safe, same-as-last-year work, then Nearsoft is definitely not the place for you.

What kinds of benefits do you offer?

Besides our base pay, our benefits include 25 paid days off, private health insurance, annual aguinaldo, and full Social Security benefits, including INFONAVIT. In addition, we get monthly vouchers (e.g., gas, groceries), and as many books as we want. Each of us gets training budget, and, depending on business conditions, we get an annual profit-sharing bonus. These are, of course, the short-term benefits.

The real, long-term benefits is what you will learn at Nearsoft. The remarkable people you’ll meet and make lifelong friendships with. The things that you’ll discover you can accomplish when you work without restrictions. The ability to reach as far and high as your creativity takes you. The opportunity to take the lead on anything you are passionate about.

What is the salary range?

You will be offered a competitive salary and nice benefits. Our goal is it to offer you great work, good pay, and time to play with your kids.

What are the expectations of the hiring manager?

First of all, we don’t have managers. Each team hires its new members as it needs to grow. The requirements vary. But the expectations are pretty consistent,

  • Come ready to hit the ground running—don’t wait for somebody to tell you what to do next (nobody will)
  • Be serious about your work, but don’t take yourself too seriously—enjoy life
  • Own up to your commitments, and help others live up to theirs
  • Take the lead on issues that you feel passionately about
  • Ask for help, don’t get stuck—adults know that they don’t have to do it all or be heroes
  • Lead with trust—the relationships you build today are going to last you a long time
  • Be resourceful, get it done—look for the smart way there, not excuses
  • Innovate, make mistakes, learn from them, innovate some more

What are some of the challenges that I might face at Nearsoft?

The number one challenge that people go through is getting used to the culture. In spite of everything that we may say during the recruiting process and all the conversations, people come in and try to find “the boss.” This takes many shapes, but it all comes back to “but, really, who’s the boss?”

What’s expected of me?

Be an adult. Be responsible. Don’t take yourself too seriously, have fun. “Always make new mistakes.”

What is the culture like at Nearsoft?

Relaxed. Committed. Driven. Balanced. Nuts. Fun. Family-friendly.

At Nearsoft, our culture is one of our most important assets. It drives the company to success or failure. We have proved that this is true for us. Culture has shaped the level of service we provide to our clients, the quality of people we hire, and our financial results.

Our culture is shaped by our values as we live them everyday. During your interview, we will be looking for how well you already live these values.

I’ve heard a few things about the Nearsoft “culture” but what does it all that mean?

At Nearsoft, our culture is one of our most important assets. It drives the company to success or failure. We have proved that this is true for us. Culture has shaped the level of service we provide to our clients, the quality of people we hire, and our financial results.

Our culture is shaped by our values as we live them everyday. During your interview, we will be looking for how well you already live these values.

Beyond that, our culture has been described as relaxed, committed, driven, balanced, nuts, fun, and family-friendly. Take your pick.

Why is Nearsoft listed as a Democratic Workplace?

WorldBlu measures workplace democracy in terms of its ten principles,

  1. Purpose and Vision
  2. Transparency
  3. Dialogue + Listening
  4. Fairness + Dignity
  5. Accountability
  6. Individual + Collective
  7. Choice
  8. Integrity
  9. Decentralization
  10. Reflection + Evaluation

Nearsoft has had the honor of being included in WorldBlu’s list of Most Democratic Workplaces since 2009, the first year that we participated.

We are a very flat organization, with no titles and no “management elite.” We each have a role, but no titles, per sé. We have a CEO, for example, but that defines his responsibility, not his place in a “hierarchy.”

We treat each other as responsible adults. And we help each other to to live up to our highest potential.

Why do they say that Nearsoft is a Great Place to Work?

The Great Place to Work Institute studies and identifies great workplaces throughout the world.

Nearsoft has been ranked in the TOP 20 since 2008 (i.e., since the first year that we participated). We started in number 17 and we’ve moved up every year. In 2012, we ranked #6 in Mexico and in #24 in Latin America.

We work very hard at making Nearsoft a great workplace. Every day. And this is reflected in our ranking.

The GPTW “measures employee engagement by surveying employee opinions, attitudes and perceptions on the level of trust between colleagues and between management and employees.”

The GPTW does an annual audit of our company culture in terms of “an analysis and inventory of the policies, practices, programs and day-to-day management behaviors that form the foundation of your workplace culture. Responses are rated for variety, originality, all-inclusiveness, human touch, and integration.”

What is the office environment like?

Relaxed. Sometimes noisy, sometimes quiet. Nuts and fun on Fridays. Lots of color on the walls. Always family-friendly.

How do you live your values?

For starters, we use them to measure how well candidates fit with us culturally. We live up to our commitments. If we can’t meet them sometimes, we own up to it and clean up after ourselves.

Every one of us has at one point or another lead on a topic that she’s passionate about. We nurture our relationships because they’re going to last for a long time. This is so with our clients, with each other, and with everyone else we’ve touched, even people we’ve decided not to hire.

We hire smart people for sure. We are also very interested in bringing in folks who are resourceful and get things done. In spite of obstacles. We are not looking for heroes. Sometimes you get things done by declaring failure and ask someone else to give it their best.

We can do what we do because we support each other as a team. It would be impossible to be a TOP 10 Great Place to Work if we didn’t embrace the team culture. We would have never been honored to be included in the WorldBlu list of Most Democratic Workplace if we didn’t lead with trust for each other as a team.

What are your core values?

  • Commitment
  • Leadership
  • Long-term Relationships
  • Smart and Get Things Done
  • Teamwork

To be clear, these are not a list of five “power” words and phrases that “the boss” came up with one day. These are the core, living values that we identified as a team.

Who are your clients?

Software product companies. Exclusively.

We don’t work on software that’s only used for internal consumption. We work only with organizations that value their software and their software developers and it is in line with their business to do so. Their software has to be high quality, world-class stuff and they know that it all starts with great engineers.

If you put a lot of love and care into creating software, if you consider it your craft, then we definitely want to work with you.

Do you have flexible work arrangements?

Besides vacation and holidays we get five days of Personal Time Off (PTO). This is time that you can take off for any reason or no reason at all. Mostly these are used for personal appointments, child care, extensive car repairs, etc.

People in your team will expect you to let them know ahead of time when you are not going to be available so they can make whatever accommodations may be necessary.

Please, read about the context for these answers.

Why Hermosillo?

One of the co-founders is from Hermosillo. So, that kind of gives you a hint of why we started there. But we’ve stayed there for other, really good reasons, like,

  • Hermosillo is a quiet city, with a low crime rate and none of the insecurity that other cities in Mexico are suffering from.
  • It has a very reasonable cost of living.
  • It has a bunch of Universities, 12 of them with software programs.
  • It has a healthy technology ecosystem where we can draw experienced candidates from.
  • It is well connected by air to the rest of Mexico and the US.
  • It is in the north of Mexico which has a very high cultural affinity to the US (e.g., major sport: baseball—go Naranjeros!).
  • It is time-aligned with the Pacific and Mountain states in the US.

We also have offices in Mexico City, Chihuahua, San Luis Potosi and Merida.

Can I work remotely?

Yes. Let people know that you’re going to be working away from the office and how to get a hold of you when needed.

Like everything else, if you go overboard with the #remote thing, so much so that it gets in the way of our commitments, then somebody from your team will probably talk to you about it.

Please, read about the context for these answers.

Do you have a dress code?

Not really. Come as you are. Be comfortable. But do wear something.

What are the working hours at Nearsoft?

There are no standard “working hours.” Each team, including the folks in the US and elsewhere, decides what their hours is. Within that, each individual usually sets her own pattern as well. So “early” teams, have some people who work “late” and viceversa.

What counts is that you deliver on your promises.

And in order to deliver on your promises, you have to interact with your team throughout their working day. It would definitely not work to have somebody working throughout the night when the rest of the team is at work during the day.

Please, read about the context for these answers.

Contact your recruiter and they’ll send you a new link to the test.

I completely identify with your values and what you want to achieve. What is it expected from me as a potential candidate?

Besides the obvious technical skills, we expect you to have the courage to lead whenever leadership is needed. We expect you to voice your concerns openly and clearly. If you identify a problem, then it will likely be taken care of, maybe even by you. But just grumbling about it won’t change a damn thing. And we are mostly interest in change. We expect you live the values of the company and to encourage and lead others to do so.

We expect you to want to be the best at what you do.

We expect you to love to learn and to always question everything.

Most of all we expect you to make mistakes and learn from them. Or as Esther Dyson put it, “always make new mistakes.”

I may not be experienced enough to join Nearsoft, but I really want to be part of your team, what are my options?

We have two programs that may be applicable in your case, the Nearsoft Academy and the Talent Incubator. As for all candidates, you must pass the Logic Test and the English Interview. These are followed by a Profile interview.

The Nearsoft Academy is for college students or recent graduates. College students must be in their ninth semester, ready to join Nearsoft full-time at the end of this six-month program. They must have no other courses during the semester or at most one course.

For more experienced candidates, there’s the Talent Incubator. This is appropriate for people who may not know a particular framework or tool that we use or may not have enough experience with a particular practice (e.g., unit testing). In these cases, a short tour through the Talent Incubator may be enough to bring them up to speed. This program is tailored made for each candidate and lasts at most three months. This is paid position, with limited benefits; full benefits kick in once you graduate from the Incubator.

Will you offer relocation aid?

Yes.

What types of pre-qualification steps are there?

If you send us your CV, one of the recruiters will contact you. You and your recruiter can discuss your qualifications versus our immediate and future needs. If Nearsoft seems to be a good match for you, then you’ll be invited to enter our hiring process.

What is the timing of when a hiring decision will be made?

Ask your recruiter and she’ll map it out for your specific case.

In general, the whole process should take two weeks at most. This is the time that it should take you from the time that you pass the Logic Test to the time that we make a decision to offer you a position.

Sometimes this may take longer for good reasons (e.g., you are not available for interviews, our developers are busier than normal). In any case, your recruiter will keep you informed of what’s going on.

My resume has been updated. Can I send in a new copy?

Please, do. No need to ask, just resend us your CV.

If I am not selected for a position, will you review my resume against other job openings or do I need to apply directly to those?

If you are a good match for Nearsoft, we’ll figure out a way to make things work. If you are our type of crazy, we’ll want you in the asylum with us.

So, no, you don’t have to apply separately for different positions. That’s our responsibility.

Now, if you have learned a new skill or technology or there’s been other significant change with you since we last talked, then, by all means, contact your recruiter and let her know. New information about you is always welcome and it may put things in a different perspective.

I didn’t find any positions that match my qualifications or interest me, should I still submit my CV anyway?

If you are interested in joining Nearsoft, then send us you CV, please. Together we will figure it out.

How many rounds of interviews will there be?

Although the details of a session will vary according to the role, the number of steps of our process is the same,

  • Logic Test. This really is more about self-discipline than logic. It is a 20-question, multiple choice test. We highly recommend that you take a full hour to complete in a quiet place, without interruptions.
  • English Interview. A 5 to 10-minute call to determine if you can hold a conversation in English.
  • Tech Screen. A 10 to 15-minute call with an appropriate technical person to determine if it makes sense to continue with the process.
  • Profile Interview. Traditional Q&A interview to get to know you better and figure out what you are strongest at.
  • Task Interview. In this session, we’ll ask you to do something specific to your skillset. Something like write software, design a UI, implement a page, create test cases, etc.

You can take a look at all the steps here.

In addition to technical skills, our decision weighs heavily on “cultural fit,” that is, our estimate of how closely you already are living our values. Even if you are very skilled and experienced, we won’t make an offer if we feel that there’s not a good cultural fit. On the other hand, we have hired people who didn’t didn’t have as much experience as other candidates, but because these folks were so well attuned to our culture they advanced very rapidly with nominal mentorship.

How long is the typical hiring process?

We really try to get it all done in less than two weeks. Sometimes it may take longer for good reasons (e.g., you may have limited time, our developers are busier than normal).

How does the hiring process work?

You can find the full explanation here.

Can I follow up with someone? Who can I call?

You can talk to your recruiter. If you can’t get a hold of her, send us an email. Somebody will get back to you within 24 hours.

What happens if I don’t make it through an interview or a test?

It all depends on how far you get in the interview process.

The main reason people fail the Logic Test is because they try to rush through it. In fact, this test is more about self-discipline than logic. So, if you were a question or two short of passing, you and your recruiter can determine if it makes sense to give it a second try. If the test freezes on you or you had to walk away from the test for whatever reason, just alert your recruiter and she’ll resend it. She can easily check if a test terminated prematurely.

However, if you answered all the questions and got a very low score, then that’s it. For now. You can try again later, in a few months. Talk with your recruiter about it.

If you don’t pass the English Interview, that ends the process, too. The interviewer will give you specific feedback on what you would need to improve (e.g., understanding, pronunciation) and suggestion on how to work on it.

If you don’t pass the Tech Screen, the Profile Interview, or the Task Interview, then your recruiter will let you know and will share with you the feedback from the interviewers. If you’d like, you can ask to talk to the interviewers directly.

TIP: If your interviewers do not offer any feedback at the end of the interview, ask. Ask them how you did, how well you answered the technical questions, and about your cultural fit.

At the end of the process, everybody who has talked to you gets together to decide whether not to make you an offer.

In all cases, we will give you the most detailed feedback possible. Our intention is that this feedback is of value to you, regardless of whether or not you end up joining Nearsoft. As part of this feedback we may recommend reading material or other means of improving weak areas. In a few cases, one of interviewers has served as a mentor to the candidate, even though we decided to not hire him at that time.

In addition to technical skills, our decision weighs heavily on “cultural fit,” that is, our estimate of how closely you already are living our values. Even if you are very skilled and experienced, we won’t make an offer if we feel that there’s not a good cultural fit. On the other hand, we have hired people who didn’t didn’t have as much experience as other candidates, but because these folks were so well attuned to our culture they advanced very rapidly with nominal mentorship.

The Context for these Answers

Many of these answers may sound like platitudes, lies, or just plain crazy. For example, on the topic of time off part of our answer is,

BTW, if you have a family emergency, go take care of your family. Take whatever time you need. We’ll worry about the formalities later.

Most people will read this and think, “This cannot be true. They can’t mean this.” People would most certainly abuse it, right? Well, not at Nearsoft.

We put a lot time, money, and energy into hiring smart, responsible adults, people who personify our values of commitment, leadership, long-term relationships, and teamwork. Given that, the answers in this document make more sense.

For example, on the issue of family emergencies, we trust that a smart responsible adult will let the rest of us know what’s going on, as appropriate. Once things calm down a bit for her, she will try and let her team know how long she might stay away; whether she’ll be able to work remotely or if she’s going to be completely off, to focus on her family. Once the emergency passes and she’s fully back at work, she’ll make up the lost time in some way, shape, or form. Of if that’s not possible, she’ll make other arrangements to make things right. This is what a smart, responsible, committed adult will naturally do, for her own sake and the sake of the team. As she did for her family, she will do for her team when she gets back.

Those are a lot of assumptions but we’ve found that it does work. Sometimes a person may forget to tell us how long they think they’ll be away taking care of their family. So, somebody will ask. Next time, she’ll know to bring it up on her own. And the time after that, she may be the person asking and helping somebody else act responsibly.

We have found that leading with trust works much better and it’s less stressful for all. It is even better for business since we don’t have to hire managers to run around and “make sure that people follow do their job.”

© 2020 Nearsoft, Inc.

Let's Connect

All your info is kept private. We'll never spam you.

Send Your Resume!

Send us your resume and we’ll guide you trough the process of landing your dream job.