A recent posting on Slashdot titled Testing IT Professionals on Job Interviews? was similar to a question posed to me by my manager. After I had forwarded him the test I was planning to use for candidates for our web developer position, he cautioned me that he thought it was possible that someone with years of experience might just be a little insulted at having to take a skills test. I understand that thought completely, and I would never want to insult someone in that manner-- but I just don't think that a test would or should be a problem for a candidate. From my perspective, any smart employer will want to measure just how good of a developer you are, and I would really hope that they've applied the same care in selecting the other developers I'd be working with.
So I want to pose a question to the rest of the community: do you think it's fair to test a candidate during an interview? Oh, and here's the manner in which I apply the test: I always tell the candidate before they come in that I'm going to be testing them; and, I let them browse the web during the test for solutions as long as they're not copying-and-pasting the answers-- after all, I look up other people's tips and solutions myself several times a day. As long as a developer can produce good code in good time during the test, I don't necessarily care whether they wrote it all from scratch or had every answer in their head.
What do you think?(Edit: Someone made the good suggestion that I post the skills test that I use. Here's the web developer skills test that I use.)