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    Default Questions for Interviewing new CAD guy

    We are going to interview a CAD guy for our small business. Does anybody have any suggested questions? Here are the ones I came up with.....
    Questions to Ask CAD Candidates
    1. How many years AutoCAD experience as it pertains to architecture and hence, cleanrooms?
    2. How many years 3D CAD or AutoCAD experience in relation to engineered/parts/assemblies/systems? Have you ever designed an automated or semi-automated machine?
    3. Imagine you just discovered a mistake you made in CAD that affects a part Bruce put out for bid. How would you handle that error?
    4. How would you describe your attitude?
    5. We are in crunch time right now and are a small company. Would you be willing and able to work longer hours and possibly Saturdays for a few weeks at a time until the end of September?
    6. How soon can you start?
    7. What CAD system have you used most recently? How about SolidWorks? How about AutoCAD?
    8. Are you handy? Do you have experience doing construction type work? Working on cars? Machine maintenance? Please describe…
    9. Can you read, interpret and use standards? Which ones?
    10. Are you experienced with business travel? International business travel? Do you have a passport?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Neil View Post
    We are going to interview a CAD guy for our small business. Does anybody have any suggested questions?
    When we were hiring a few people for wheel design I skipped all that crap and made a napkin sketch. Then everybody got a half hour at the computer to draw it up. Best man wins.

    Of course, when you have a hundred people to choose from you can be pickier.

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    Neil,

    I think those are very good questions that will give you a clear feel for your applicant and I don't really have any to add.

    My advise is to be prepared to make concessions to what type of person you might hire due to a shallow talent pool of candidates.

    I think they fall into 3 groups.

    1. The person that checks every box. This person exists but already has a very good job. You probably don't even get the chance to interview them without a head hunter drawing their attention with an offer of "moon and stars" compensation.

    2. The person that has the talent but not the attitude. This person is always looking for a job and has had many due to whatever personality issues they may have (butts heads with co-workers, gets bored easy, etc.) They may get you out of a jam but view it as a short term rental.

    3. Good attitude but lacking skills. These are what I call the "draft & develop" candidates. This is typically a younger person that has some of the skills you require but also need some nurturing. This is the position I most often find myself in and while it may not provide the results you need immediately I think its the best method to build a sustainable group of talent.

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    How well and how accurate can he shoot a rubber band. Every great CAD designer I know is also fantastic shooting rubber bands.

    Do they understand GD&T and tolerance stackups?
    What have they done in the past to fix bad CAD files and bodies.
    what is their idea of ideal layer management and company layer standards

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    (Asshole hat on


    You for got one question:

    11: Can you fly a kite?

    I mean, half of your questions ain't got Dick to do with CAD, and the others are conflicting and confusing, so might as well ask about past time activities while you're at it.

    (regular hat back on )

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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffj View Post
    How well and how accurate can he shoot a rubber band. Every great CAD designer I know is also fantastic shooting rubber bands.
    HaHa! Man does that bring back memories. Back in the days of APT. I remember being a nc programmer trainee sitting in a room full of contract nc programmers. Man oh man, the tricks those guys could do with rubber bands. And why not, practice makes perfect. And they practiced a lot , especially on overtime. HaHa! Great programmers and very generous showing us newbies the tricks of the trade. And how to shoot rubber bands.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Neil View Post
    We are going to interview a CAD guy for our small business. Does anybody have any suggested questions? Here are the ones I came up with.....
    Questions to Ask CAD Candidates
    1. How many years AutoCAD experience as it pertains to architecture and hence, cleanrooms?
    2. How many years 3D CAD or AutoCAD experience in relation to engineered/parts/assemblies/systems? Have you ever designed an automated or semi-automated machine?
    3. Imagine you just discovered a mistake you made in CAD that affects a part Bruce put out for bid. How would you handle that error?
    4. How would you describe your attitude?
    5. We are in crunch time right now and are a small company. Would you be willing and able to work longer hours and possibly Saturdays for a few weeks at a time until the end of September?
    6. How soon can you start?
    7. What CAD system have you used most recently? How about SolidWorks? How about AutoCAD?
    8. Are you handy? Do you have experience doing construction type work? Working on cars? Machine maintenance? Please describe…
    9. Can you read, interpret and use standards? Which ones?
    10. Are you experienced with business travel? International business travel? Do you have a passport?
    Here is the problem ...those are the things you want to hear, a good interviewee will recognize that and will answer accordingly. For the factual stuff questions like that are ok. What system have you used, what was your last project etc? Do you have a passport, do you have any issues traveling? You will never find out if they are creative or can solve problems and work under stress. A much better approach is to ask them to tell you about the last time they had to correct something, react to problems, what was the problem, the solution, etc. What you will gain with that is two things: one you can gauge what kind of challenges your applicant faced in their past and if the solution was commensurate with the challenge. Make the applicant sell their experience to you. Ask them why they think they would be your best choice? Ask them what do they want to know about your operations? What do they want to know about the job? Do not just volunteer information make them work for it. You want a curious person. You also want to find out about their interpersonal skills.

    You dictate when the employment starts, ask them if they can start whenever you need them, or feel reasonable to ask them to start. Leave that for the end, or toward the end of the interview. Make it conditional...like if we decide to hire you can you start next, month tomorrow, whatever you decide. Let them agree or push back. Make the whole interview such that you stay in control.

    I hope that helps, good luck

    P.S. If you interviewed me and asked any of those questions that are not just facts, I would conclude that you are desperate and you really do not know what kind of talent you look for.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dcsipo View Post
    P.S. If you interviewed me and asked any of those questions that are not just facts, I would conclude that you are desperate and you really do not know what kind of talent you look for.
    That right there, bold, red and underlined !

    Basically, EVERYONE will fail based on those questions, no matter who you have hired after a very confusing interview, and that includes YOU !!!

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    I'm kinda surprised that no one is going to ask this CAD guy to demonstrate that he can draw something ? You've got HR over in the US, too, I see ...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Neil View Post
    We are going to interview a CAD guy for our small business. Does anybody have any suggested questions? Here are the ones I came up with.....
    Questions to Ask CAD Candidates
    1. How many years AutoCAD experience as it pertains to architecture and hence, cleanrooms?
    2. How many years 3D CAD or AutoCAD experience in relation to engineered/parts/assemblies/systems? Have you ever designed an automated or semi-automated machine?
    3. Imagine you just discovered a mistake you made in CAD that affects a part Bruce put out for bid. How would you handle that error?
    4. How would you describe your attitude?
    5. We are in crunch time right now and are a small company. Would you be willing and able to work longer hours and possibly Saturdays for a few weeks at a time until the end of September?
    6. How soon can you start?
    7. What CAD system have you used most recently? How about SolidWorks? How about AutoCAD?
    8. Are you handy? Do you have experience doing construction type work? Working on cars? Machine maintenance? Please describe…
    9. Can you read, interpret and use standards? Which ones?
    10. Are you experienced with business travel? International business travel? Do you have a passport?
    How will YOU answer these questions that an applicant will ask you ?
    1. How much do you pay ?
    2. When I work Saturdays to fix up your schedule mess ups, how is overtime calculated ?
    3. When I innovate, and make your company shine, how do you reward me ?
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails beaver1.jpg  

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    As far as overseas travel. I have done that, if you haven't, most people will say "absolutely" but when reality sets in, and you are spending 16+ hours on a plane.....

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    Sounds like they have employees that drag their ass all week so they can work gobs of overtime.

    I would address that first

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    Quote Originally Posted by EmanuelGoldstein View Post
    I'm kinda surprised that no one is going to ask this CAD guy to demonstrate that he can draw something ? You've got HR over in the US, too, I see ...
    I interviewed at a place that wanted me to program a part with Mastercam. What a disaster! I asked what machine and he said oh just pick one () oookkaayy.... How are we holding the part, just make something up...... He didn't like one thing I did. How do you check the part? I use verify and stock compare..... But how do check the part? Well the setup guy dials in comp and stuff.... But how do YOU check the part.... I give up. Freeking tool!

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    Quote Originally Posted by digger doug View Post
    How will YOU answer these questions that an applicant will ask you ?
    1. How much do you pay ?
    2. When I work Saturdays to fix up your schedule mess ups, how is overtime calculated ?
    3. When I innovate, and make your company shine, how do you reward me ?
    All that fall under the answers you get for your questions on what the applicants want to know about their future with you. . If they ask whether or not you have an IP and patent policy. An overtime policy or performance-based bonuses. promotion, career path, raise, etc. You immediately know that you are dealing with a person who has been around the block, ambitious, or a hammer dropper. I like my questions to applicants to be open-ended so I can dig into specifics with them as they are revealing more about themselves. It also gives me the opportunity to be candid about things I do not know, I have to check with others, or need to resolve to get them to join if I really want them. I am selling an organization at the same time they are selling themselves. An interview is a complex negotiation process with very few strict rules. But since I am buying a very expensive asset and selling a job inside of a complex thing, I have to stay in control. The applicant is only buying a job, The context of the organization for them is just a complicating factor.

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    Quote Originally Posted by EmanuelGoldstein View Post
    I'm kinda surprised that no one is going to ask this CAD guy to demonstrate that he can draw something ? You've got HR over in the US, too, I see ...
    that is on the second interview . I do not care if they are freakin Da Vinci if they have an attitude that does not fit the team. Much harder to find the right team member than to teach someone to draw a circle . Having both is a bonus.

    dee
    ;-D

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    #1 question that should be asked is "Do you have a car?"
    #2 Do you have a valid drivers license?
    #3 Can you breathe on your own?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike1974 View Post
    I interviewed at a place that wanted me to program a part with Mastercam. What a disaster! I asked what machine and he said oh just pick one () oookkaayy.... How are we holding the part, just make something up ... I give up. Freeking tool!
    So the interview worked out really well. You discovered you didn't want to work for them

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    Quote Originally Posted by Neil View Post
    We are going to interview a CAD guy for our small business. Does anybody have any suggested questions? Here are the ones I came up with.....
    Questions to Ask CAD Candidates
    1. How many years AutoCAD experience as it pertains to architecture and hence, cleanrooms?
    2. How many years 3D CAD or AutoCAD experience in relation to engineered/parts/assemblies/systems? Have you ever designed an automated or semi-automated machine?
    -Seems like you would want to ask questions that are directly related to the tasks you want to hire the prospect for. Perhaps questions #1 and #2 are part of the business your firm does but architecture and machine automation seem rather unrelated. Software is also somewhat task specific. Is most/more of the projects 2D or 3D? I learned AutoCad first but neglected it after being introduced to 3D parametric/associative software and only drag out 2D for cut paths on machinery that require it (water jet for eg.) or the occasional plant layout. Horses for courses sort of thing so estimate what you need from the prospect. If he/she is sending drawings out to shops does he/she have enough experience to understand shop practices and communicate with the shop when questions arise?

    Attitude is important for teamwork and I wouldn't want to hire a loose cannon but I'd sometimes prefer more competence than a chameleon that knows how to provide a shiny side up at the interview. Too many companies I've worked for have an excess of employees that know who and what to kiss to get ahead. Being friendly only goes just so far in engineering/design work. They belong in sales and customer contact.

    Qualifications depend upon what they're doing.

    1) Does their work require only the concept or full detail down to the BOM and material selection?
    2) How do they handle incomplete or poorly modeled/constrained components/assemblies from a non-native file?
    3) What strength do you need the prospect to have more often 2D or 3D? Solid or surfacing skills?

    Those are the only questions I'd add, if those are relevant at all.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dcsipo View Post
    that is on the second interview . I do not care if they are freakin Da Vinci if they have an attitude that does not fit the team. Much harder to find the right team member than to teach someone to draw a circle . Having both is a bonus.
    Opposite ideas I figger what I am paying for is a skill. The human part of it is my responsibility to deal with. That doesn't include psychotic serial killers but normal humans, if I'm hiring a CAD person, the CAD part is what counts.

    Different strokes, and if it's just drawing a circle, heck, the Assistant can do that, I'll add it to her workload

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    Quote Originally Posted by EmanuelGoldstein View Post
    Opposite ideas I figger what I am paying for is a skill. The human part of it is my responsibility to deal with. That doesn't include psychotic serial killers but normal humans, if I'm hiring a CAD person, the CAD part is what counts.

    Different strokes, and if it's just drawing a circle, heck, the Assistant can do that, I'll add it to her workload
    Yes, I want both, a great team player and Boku skills, but I am more willing to pass up someone with difficulties being a good team member. I can teach people but have a harder time changing them.

    If I figure out first that they do not make a good fit, then I do not have remorse about giving up their skills.

    The circle was a reference to why Pirelli tires won't stay round. .... because Leonardo was the last Italian who could draw a good circle.


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