An Effective Guide to Hiring Software Developers in a Candidate-Driven Market

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It is no easy task trying to recruit software developers in the current market. Due to the shortage of talent, it’s certainly not getting any easier. This article is going to provide some advice on how to conquer the candidate-driven market.

  1. Understanding the Developer Tech Market

Generally speaking, the unemployment rate for developers is at an all-time low. The latest study in the US showed that the unemployment rate for software developers was down to 1.3%. Each tech candidate in the US has an average of 4 jobs to choose from. When looking at San Francisco City, there were 10,000 vacancies that come under this engineering criteria. In the same area, there were only 1,400 receptionist jobs and 600 postings for non-technical positions.

  1. What does a Recruiter Do?

One could look at the Law of Diminishing returns to look at the requirements of a recruiter. The law simplified means that the greater the input, the lower the output. So, a recruiter actually needs to reduce the number of emails, calls, messages, etc. in order to find tech talent. A recent study showed that to recruit one developer, you should contact 20 quality candidates instead of the 100 you would be tempted to reach out to.

Rather than sending a general message to every potential candidate, a recruiter should focus on personalized communication with a select few that meet the needs of the business.

  1. Learning How to Source Candidates Correctly

 Put yourself in the candidate’s shoes and ask yourself “what’s in it for me?”, essentially, how is this candidate going to benefit from working at this company rather than where they are now.

  • Be specific. Tell them straight away what they have the chance to work on, the learning opportunities, and the future they could build within the company.
  • Don’t try and do it alone. You are a recruiter; don’t try answering tech questions when it’s not your field. Make sure you have the right people at hand to talk to candidates. You may need an engineering manager or if you are recruiting senior developers, general managers or CEOs.
  • Less is more. Focus your attention on 10 extremely well written and personal emails instead of 100 general emails. Your contact must be personalized, which includes understanding the progress they have made in their careers so far.
  • Keep it short and sweet. LinkedIn statistics show that messages and emails with less than 100 words tend to get more responses than those with more than 200 words.
  • Be helpful. Don’t just talk about the job. Ask candidates if they have questions or doubts. Clear up any myths about the company that can be found online.
  1. Keeping the Candidate Engaged

Give the candidate a chance to talk about what drives them. Find out the things that you can’t read on their curriculum. Ask them what they want to talk about. Your candidate needs to feel like they are valued and it’s important at this stage to make a connection.

It is necessary to be honest with the candidate, particularly with the feedback you provide. Show that you appreciate the achievements they have made in both their professional and private lives.

  1. Back your Candidate during the Hiring Process

Part of the role of the recruiter is to make the candidate believe in themselves. They need to feel that they have your support throughout the hiring process. Talk to them about what to expect and each stage and anything they should watch out for. Hiring tech talent is a long process and you don’t want to leave them along the way. Keeping them informed prevents the feeling of not knowing.

It is necessary to assess the candidate on their relevant skills. Their curriculum may have a range of skills and qualifications but try to focus on those that will be used in the job.

Understand what they are looking for to improve their current situation. Some people want more money, but there are many others who would like improved working conditions like flexibility or an alternative location. Boredom is also another reason for a candidate to look for another job. It is necessary for you to actively listen to what the person is saying.

Be completely honest about the compensation and what is required of them. Also, ask what they are expected in this area.

  1. Closing the Offer

This is the final chance for the recruiter to appreciate what is important to the candidate and to emphasis how this job is going to benefit them. It is the moment to address false myths about the company and provide the right environment for the candidate to say yes.

Don’t just focus on the financial benefits. In many situations, a developer is more interested in the tasks they will have, the culture they are working in and the work-life balance. Developers are interested in professional growth; show them the potential in this company.

Even if you have done everything in your power, there will be times when a candidate says no. It’s important not to take this personally and to respect the decision of the candidate. Try to use it as a learning opportunity and always leave the candidate with a positive image of the company.

  1. Everyone Should Play Their Part

While you might be tempted to take on all of the responsibility of hiring, this will often work to your disadvantage. Make sure your hiring manager is involved. Finally, don’t just rely on the Internet for resources, as there are still a number of people who avoid social media. Attend meetups, conferences, and hackathons in order to actively seek new talent. or take the easy way and work with a staffing company to find the right employee.