This post was updated in October 2017 with new information.
So you need to hire a few developers? Get in line and be patient.
As famed VC investor Marc Andreessen has declared, software is eating the world, and developers are the ones building that software. So when you need to hire a few developers, just advertise a job once and the candidates will start rolling in, right? Wrong.
It’s no secret that it's incredibly difficult to attract and connect with talented programmers. In order to do so, it's in your best interest to always be advertising. Here's why.
Whether you're a two-person startup operating out of an office space the size of a closet, a well-established unicorn with a $1b+ valuation, or somewhere in between, brand building is crucial in the engineering community. Developers care about more than just salary when evaluating a potential job. They also want to work with smart people, have the flexibility to learn new programming languages on the job, and be able to enjoy a real work-life balance. Be honest about what your company values and what types of projects a candidate will be working on, and you’ll start to attract the types of candidates you want to target.
In our 2017 survey of ~64,000 programmers around the globe, only 13% said that they're actively looking for new jobs, while 62% of them said that they are open to new job opportunities. By advertising your job opportunities to passive developers (someone who is open to new job opportunities, but not necessarily always looking for a new one), you're increasing your potential candidate pool seven times over.
You’ll want to advertise your openings for an extended period of time in a place that they actually spend their time. With 5 available jobs for every 1 developer, being positioned in case one of those passive job seekers pops his or her head up to explore new options will increase the opportunity of you hiring a qualified candidate.
If your engineers are building an awesome product that's being adopted by clients, chances are that you're always going to need talented developers to further build, maintain, and test the software. Rather than advertise one-off, constantly build your candidate pipeline by always advertising your positions.
You may not have the need to hire at this exact moment, but keeping interested candidates up to speed on what your engineers are working on and what opportunities may arise in the future will jumpstart the hiring process when the right time comes. This way, the next time your hiring manager comes in and demands that she needs developers yesterday, you can breathe easy knowing that you have a crop of candidates ready to go.