Coding is an essential skill for programmers. Choosing the right candidate for your team is always an uphill task. They not only have to look for the best coding abilities in candidates but also scan for non-technical skill sets. Conducting several tests to cover all these aspects would be a stressful and tiring job. 

Here is where a coding assessment test becomes a solution to the recruitment process. It effectively simplifies the tasks that go behind finding the right candidate for the role. Since this evaluation easily shortlists the candidates based on coding and non-technical skills, a coding assessment test is considered to be a comprehensive and all-inclusive assessment that can filter out the top most skilled, and deserving candidates for your organization. This write-up here will give you insights into the essentiality of programming aptitude test, and coding assessment test, and how these are beneficial in leading you to the right candidate. 

What is a Programming Aptitude Test?

A programming aptitude test is an umbrella test that is conducted for the role of a programmer. The applicants are scrutinized for their programming abilities like coding, logical and mathematical reasoning, algorithm skills, etc. This test can be conducted to shortlist applicants for different roles like software developer, web developer, software engineer, and many more.

This assessment test will allow the hiring manager to have an inclusive understanding of each applicant. A programmer aptitude test constitutes a wide range of tasks, that includes simple programming tests like live coding challenges, and take-home assessments, to non-coding, skill-based tasks like language comprehension, situational assessment, personality tests, etc. Hence, this is an all-encompassing assessment test for the right programming candidate.  

Benefits of Using a Programming Aptitude Test

In a traditional setup, the candidates are often shortlisted based on resume screening and several consecutive rounds of interviews with the programmers, department manager, and finally the head of the organization. Imagine this being done for 100+ candidates for one specific role, and also for multiple other open positions. This process tends to take a longer time to complete. 

Instead, the coding aptitude test will provide you a space where the hiring manager/test-initiator can single-handedly get done with the initial shortlisting. The test-initiator can auto-generate the test with a coding assessment tool with pre-existing sample questions. This will help the evaluator assess the candidates objectively, with zero unconscious bias, which will land them on the right candidate. 

While evaluating candidates for the role of a programmer, a lot of parameters must be considered before making the final call. Firstly, the past knowledge and experience of the applicants and how as a programmer they can be beneficial. But most importantly, you also need to consider if the candidate will fit in your team and organization. A programming aptitude test is a combination of several technical-oriented tests like coding bootcamp assessment test, software developer aptitude test, computer science assessment test, etc, along with non-technical assessments on behavioral, situation-based thinking and judgment, etc. 

Also, the organization’s requirements or criteria with respect to the role might change. To meet the requirements of the role proposed by you, a programming skills test like this will deliver the candidates who would match the criteria the best. 

Some of the benefits of opting this evaluation method are:

  • Takes minimal time in shortlisting the candidates
  • The test-initiator can set the time limit for the test
  • The test-initiator can decide on the difficulty level of the test 
  • Results can be generated instantaneously once the test is completed
  • Bias is removed since the results are based on the skills
  • The built-in sample questions are customizable

Skills You Can Evaluate in a Programming Aptitude Test

All of the crucial programming skills as well as necessary aptitude abilities can be effectively deciphered from the performance of the candidates. Combining both these aspects, the skill sets in a programming assessment are majorly classified into three categories:

1. Programming Language Skills Assessment

The programming aptitude test will have coding assessment tests for evaluating the programming language competency of the candidates. These tests involve questions where the candidates are asked to solve coding questions/challenges in a given amount of time. The online coding assessment, which is conducted online, can be used to assess the candidates’ degree of knowledge of the different programming languages, their frameworks, and technologies. With this programming assessment, all these determiners can be checked and evaluated simultaneously for all the candidates.

2. Assessment of Cognitive Abilities

The focus of this particular assessment is to evaluate the candidates’ creative caliber, problem-solving capabilities, and potential to capture and learn new things. They are given situations where they will have to create, identify, generate an algorithm, figure out solutions, and code them for the problems that they are assigned.

3. Evaluation of Soft Skills

Assessing soft skills mainly is oriented toward the candidates’ critical thinking abilities, communication skills, and also time management skills. These are essential abilities for a programming assessment to enhance the efficiency of the role. 

4. Checking Coding Sequences and Patterns

This is an important skill for any coder. The evaluator should be able to judge the candidate’s understanding of the sequence and patterns that are repeatable to general software designs. Reviewing this ability would make the selection much simpler. 

5. Model Questions in a Programming Aptitude Test

Some basic types of questions are common and crucial to understand the programming and the coding ability of a candidate. For this, there are a general set of questions that are frequently included in a programming aptitude test. The following are the areas that are covered in it:

  • Timed entry-level algorithm questions
  • Programming languages debugging 
  • Use programming language to solve real-life issues
  • Query-related questions using databases
  • Choice-based questions 
  • Multiple-response questions

Top Programming Skills Employers Look For

In any programming aptitude test, programming skills are prioritized by the hiring managers. Generally, A coding assessment test is conducted to determine the skills and the candidate’s understanding of some programming languages. Here we have listed some of the top programming skills that hiring managers generally assess candidates on.

1. General Coding

Coding is an important skill for a programmer. In any job role from a front-end developer, or back-end developer, to a data scientist, coding stands as an important aspect. General coding is the process of writing a set of instructions for the computer to carry out a particular process.

2. HTML and CSS

In developing and designing a web page, HTML (HyperText Markup Language) and CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) are the most used technologies and are considered to be a basic necessity.

3. JavaScript

JavaScript is again very widely used in constructing web applications. Many purposes are served with this programming language like the interaction of the elements on a website, developing web servers, making video game applications, etc. 

4. React

As a JavaScript library, which is a set of pre-written code, React is extensively used for building UIs in web applications. A notable feature that makes it popular is its ability to break complex User Interfaces into simpler components. 

5. SQL

It is a language that is used to manage data stored in relational databases and it is supported by almost all of the database management systems. A lot of small, medium, and large business benefits in areas like managing data and reports.

6. Python

Python is again one of the most popular programming languages which is uncomplicated in approach and has a large reservoir of libraries and resources for the users. It can also be used across several applications like artificial intelligence and data analysis. 

Apart from these, some other important programming languages that are preferred by hiring managers include General Database, Node.js, Rest, Git, and TypeScript.

Non-technical Skills Assessment in a Programming Aptitude Test

Programming tests combined with different aptitude-oriented tests will give a panoptic coverage of a candidate’s ability. These aptitude tests will cover the non-technical aspects of a candidate like language comprehension, cognitive ability, role-specific ability, and many more. 

Language Comprehension

Communication is a very essential skill that any role will require in an organization. Developers, software engineers, managers, and every other role has to have proper and accurate communication to carry out their jobs perfectly. Companies often prefer multilingual candidates who are specialized in foreign languages for a global appeal. For this, a language comprehension assessment or simply a language test can be adopted with the programming aptitude test. 

Cognitive Ability

Testing of cognitive abilities will give an idea of the candidates’ overall behavior. Through this test, you will be able to ascertain their ability to perceive things and gauge their memory and attention span. When a cognitive test is combined with an aptitude test, you can assess areas like critical thinking, numerical reasoning, attention to detail, etc.

Situational Assessment

Time management skills and communication abilities can be evaluated in depth with this situational-judgment assessment. A critical situation will be assigned to the candidate along with the programming test to choose the right candidate. 

Role-Oriented Test

Role-specific tests are integrated into the programming skills test. These are role-based where each role can be assessed with their respective algorithm for that role. For example, a web developer aptitude test can be used for the role of a web developer. In the case of a software developer, you can combine an aptitude test for a software developer with a programming test like the software engineer assessment test. In a different scenario, a coding bootcamp aptitude test can be conducted for a coding-based role or a programming logic test for programmers in general.

Personality Test

This test will evaluate the candidates based on their personal traits and values to match the criteria of the role. 

4 Ways to Prepare an Effective Aptitude Test for Candidates

Building the right aptitude is essential in finding the right candidate since it is necessary for them to fit into the work culture of your organization. For this, the behavioral aspects of the candidates weigh heavier. Here are some steps you can follow while constructing an aptitude test:

1. Choose a Name for the Assessment

Choosing a name that is specific to the job role is crucial. They must be easily identifiable which would give out an idea of what it consists of or what the candidate can expect from them. 

2. Go for Five Tests Minimum

When generating an aptitude test make sure you include a minimum of five including the programmer aptitude test, and get an extensive report on each candidate. 

3. Include Customized Coding Questions

Along with regular types of questions like multiple-choice, essay, and video-based, customized coding questions based on the role will be apt for a programmer aptitude test. 

4. Set Advanced Options and Do a Review

Once you have created the questions according to the role, you can add additional options like extra time, anti-cheating, or even a qualifying question to determine their fitness for the role. 

5 Best Assessment Tools for Programming Skills

In recent times, many organizations have adopted the approach of choosing candidates through pre-set assessment, especially for programming and other technical job roles. These coding assessment tools will bring out more objectivity in the process making it much more reliable and error-free. Here are some of the best tools for you to have a seamless recruitment process. 

1. SkillRobo

SkillRobo is an exceptional online skills assessment tool where the major focus is on critical traits and skills. The users of SkillRobo can create tests based on job roles and hire the right candidates. These tests can be created and customized according to the criteria of the role bringing out a holistic understanding of each candidate. It is a platform that provides over 100+ pre-designed tests for a wide range of job roles. Some notable features are:

  • Customizable Pre-designed Tests
  • Wide range of skills tests across different sectors like BPOs, IT, KPOs, automobile, etc.
  • Instant analytics and results
  • Seamless integration with other applications
  • Interactive, engaging, simple to use
  • The hiring manager can share the assessment link directly with the candidates with ease.


It is a platform that has initiated the shift from resume-based screening to skill-based shortlisting, which allows managers to interview only the most eligible candidate. This tool lets you choose any project-based template or you can generate one by uploading the job description. Some notable features are:

  • Authentication is done through profiles on media like Linkedin, Facebook, etc so that the hiring managers can validate the real candidate.
  • Live video recording and interview interface are available

3. HackerRank

This is one of the oldest interview platforms. It is a customizable tool for online technical assessments and home assignments. This platform is also used as a skill-nurturing tool for developers. It is an apt tool for multinational companies where it will maintain the best compliance. Some notable features are:

  • Multiple assessment options in screening and assessing the candidates
  • Features like integrations and security at an enterprise level

4. HireVue

HireVue is a platform that offers video interviewing, scheduling functions, conversational AI, and assessments. Though not specific to developer hiring, it does render technical assessments. It is a tool that is great for assessments and is an expert in integrating with any non-specialized tool. Some notable features are:

  • They hold high-end reference customers
  • Objective assessment through structured guide for interviews

5. Tests4Geeks

The tests in this platform are developed by experienced developers. These designed coding tests are used for the shortlisting process which saves time from interviewing non-deserving candidates. 

  • Users can customize tests and reports according to their brand image
  • Wide range of programming tests

Choosing the right coding assessment tool is always essential when you aim for a capable candidate. Several parameters must go into consideration before you make a choice. Once the recruiter has standardized the objectives and criteria of the role, it will become much simpler to choose an assessment tool. 

SkillRobo is an all-in-one platform where you can find test templates that cover most job roles from any industry. As a pre-employment skills assessment tool, it can be used as the best tool to conduct a coding assessment test seamlessly. Hiring candidates are made hassle-free as it filters the skillful candidates precisely. With instant report generation, SkillRobo will offer you the list of candidates with the rankings, making it easier for you to just finalize the candidates for the interview. It equally covers both technical and non-technical assessment tests giving you an enhanced understanding of the candidates’ abilities. To experience this holistic and efficient hiring process, sign up with SkillRobo now!