Pixum Software Engineering Blog
An insight into our development team, what we do and how we work

Pixum Schnuppertag for Developers

Christian Seifert

The “Schnuppertag” is one of the essential steps within our hiring process. It gives both Pixum and you as a candidate the chance to get to know the other side and evaluate if we want to work together.

In this article I would like to give you an overview of why we think a Schnuppertag is useful and how a Schuppertag is organized.

What does “Schnuppertag” mean?

Schnuppertag is a German word that’s a bit tricky to directly translate into English. The closest English equivalent would be “trial day” although the original German meaning is a bit more playful and fun.

How does the Schnuppertag look like?

A Schnuppertag consists of a whole day that you as a candidate spend in our Pixum office in Cologe, learning about Pixum as a company, what we do, how we work and who the people are who are doing all the work.

The Schnuppertag starts with a meet and greet, where you will be welcomed by someone from our recruiting team as well as the head of the department where you might work if both sides give a thumbs up at the end of the process. You will most like already know these people from your initial interview.

In case of a developer the head of would be one of these three people:

  • Christian, the head of the backend development team
  • Dominik, the head of the frontend development team
  • Patric, the head of the DevOps team

After the meet and greet you will be given a tour around our office and will learn about the most important places: The coffee machine and the candy bar.

Our candy bar Our coffee machine

Once settled in and provided with the necessary cup of coffee you will have a chance to meet your future team. This will be your chance to get to know your potential colleagues, who will tell you about the projects that we currently work on, the technologies that we’re working with any anything else you’re curious about.

After meeting the team you will have a chance to meet Marc our CTO who can give you a bit of inside into our company vision in general and our technical vision in particular.

Next you will meet two colleagues (usually from a completely different department) for the “Cultural Fit” interview. Here we’re interested in learning more about your personality, your working style and your past experiences in working collaboratively with other people. We will also present you our Pixum culture and given you the chance to ask any questions you have about our culture, our working style and anything else you’re interested in.

By the time the Cultural Fit interview is over you will most like be hungry and we will invite you to a lunch where the colleagues from your potential team will join again.

We have a variety of options available: We own a real pizza oven so if you like you can have a fresh pizza in a little under five minutes. If pizza isn’t your cup of tea we also have a canteen just across the corner which usually has something for everyone.

After lunch you will have two hours for a coding challenge.

We would like to get a bit more insight into your development skills and will give you a small assignment to complete. Don’t worry - nobody expects you to deliver a high-end solution or solve any real world problem for us. We’re just curious about your programming style and the way you tackle a programming task.

Finally, at the end of the day you’ll have the chance to present your solution to the coding challenge to a series of people you already met during the day: The head of the department you might end up working, the colleagues you might be working with and others you encountered during the day.

This will also be the chance for you to ask any questions that came up during the day and haven’t been answered so far - so that you can leave with everything you need to know to make a decision whether or not Pixum is the right place for you.

Note that this is the typical version of a Schnuppertag. The order of meetings might be shuffled around a bit to accommodate the schedule of the people you’ll be meeting.

We’re also happy to accommodate any special requests you might have. Want to know a bit more about how our infrastructure is managed or how our agile teams are working? Just let us know anything you might want to put focus on in advance and we’ll do our best to make it happen.

Why do we think the Schnuppertag is important?

Spending a whole day at Pixum - isn’t that a bit too much?

Again and again we have seen that a Schnuppertag is extremely useful - for both sides.

A Schnuppertag is not just Pixum evaluating you but also you evaluating Pixum!

It’s like a first date where both sides check if the other one thinks as you do, feels as you do and would be a great partner to spend more time with.

We put a lot of effort into giving you a realistic view into how we work at Pixum and bring the most important people to the table that you’ll actually be working with.

A whole day gives us the chance to talk a bit more about what’s important to us and what’s important to you so that - in case you decide to start working with us - no side is surprised when we meet each other for your first working day at Pixum.

So, who knows - maybe the next Schnuppertag is with you?