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Post by Rich Moy on Mar 31, 2016 12:00:00 PM

This post was updated in October 2017 with new information.

Before you reach out to a developer about an opening on your tech team, it’s important to understand what they care about. Sure, compensation is often one of the first things they consider about any developer job opportunity, but it’s not always enough to convince top tech talent to jump at the chance to join your company. Based on what we found in this year’s developer survey, here are a few things that developers prioritize when they think about the possibility of switching jobs.

Building Something Impactful

Ultimately, one of the most satisfying parts of being a developer for most people is seeing the impact of their work. While it might have been easy to assume that salary was the most important priority for all developers, 37% of the people who responded to our survey in 2016 did not include compensation on their list of job priorities at all. On the other hand, over 32% of respondents told us they wanted to work on innovative projects. If your tech team ships a lot of code, don’t keep that a secret. Give your candidates a clear picture of the opportunities they’ll have to see the results of their hard work as part of your team.


Quality Colleagues

It’s no secret that great developers want to work with other great developers. In fact, the desire to work with quality colleagues was one of the biggest priorities for developers who responded to this year’s survey. You should be proud of your current tech team, and because of that, don’t be shy about introducing them to the candidates you’re trying to recruit.

Your current developers can be great ambassadors for your company and ultimately could mean the difference between regularly hiring great tech talent and consistently missing out on candidates you know would have been big contributors. While you’ll need to have a solid plan in place to make it easy for your team to participate in the developer interview process, your preparation will ultimately turn your developers into some of your company’s strongest advocates.

Work-Life Balance

Some of the most talented developers you’ll meet will be so passionate about what they’re working on that asking them to describe the details of a project will make them forget they’re on an interview. That doesn’t mean they want to be working around the clock.

In fact, 48% of developers in 2017 listed it as one of the most important aspects of a potential job opportunity. As important as it is to offer candidates the option to work flexible hours, it’s just as valuable of a recruitment tool to keep your current developers happy. If managing a team working across multiple time zones seems intimidating, our VP of Engineering David Fullerton offers a few suggestions, including an emphasis on constant communication and team-wide commitment to making the arrangement work for everyone involved.

Company Culture

All too often, tech recruiters incorrectly assume that developers only want to work for companies that offer incredible perks and a healthy dose of craft brews. However, company culture does not begin and end with drinks with your co-workers. Although office environment scored a 3.0115 out of 5 on developers' list of job evaluation criteria in 2017, that does not indicate a desire to work with colleagues who think exactly like they do. In fact, our CEO Joel Spolsky says that developers want to feel like their work has meaning. He adds, “As a recruiter, your job is to identify the idealistic aspects of your company, and make sure candidates are aware of them.”

2017 hiring landscape


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