When looking for the right person for the job, you don't just grab some IT person by the arm and say "You're hired. Welcome aboard". It's prudent to first look at what kind of work a programmer has done in addition to work references, etc. before making a decision. Below you will find coding I've created that shows my diverse capabilities.
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Let's examine a hypothetical scenario to further illustrate my point. Imagine your company needs to have custom software developed for your human resources department that will maintain a "past employee database". This system will maintain records of departed employees going back a dozen years, but it will have a very important purpose. It will also run a battery of reports from the stored data records using an array of varying input criteria. The idea is to use this reporting utility to track how often employees were terminated and for what reasons. This will function as a guide to hopefully prevent bad hiring choices in the future.
Now you are at a crossroads. Your company sales are way down and you are trying to save money wherever you can. You are contemplating hiring a rookie programmer with very little experience, because the price he quoted you was quite low. But is it really worth it? You'll save substantial money on the project cost to be sure. But beware - that move could open a Pandora's box.
So you hired bargain basement IT guy. The application that "newbie programmer" created for you was riddled with bugs. And it didn't prevent more poor and costly hiring decisions, because it never worked right to begin with. The point of the story is that choosing someone with a proven track record of success is both sensible and cost effective over the long run.