Executives outside of the HR function tend to scrutinize cost-per-hire because they want their colleagues in talent acquisition to find ways to reduce spend. Although an abnormally high number might be a red flag for non-technical roles, this isn’t always the case when you’re hiring developers. At best, most of the top candidates are only passively interested in new jobs—and often, your tech recruiting strategy requires a separate budget.
Taking all of these factors into consideration, it’s not difficult to see that calculating cost-per-technical-hire can be tricky. It’s even more of a challenge when you’re recruiting for a variety of developer roles. Here are a few reasons why it’s important to go the extra mile and calculate cost-per-hire for each technical position on your team’s plate.
In this year’s edition of our Developer Hiring Landscape, we found that over 55% of respondents identified as Back-End Developers. If your company only wants programmers to work on back-end systems, this might be great news.
But what if you also needed to hire a System Administrator? That job title is far from uncommon, and yet only 11% of developers identified as such. With fewer candidates available, your recruiters will need additional time and resources to fill these roles. They might even need to increase their attendance at meetups and hackathons to hit their hiring goals.
When you add up the costs for online recruiting tools and recruiter salaries, your average cost-per-hire on a Systems Administrator role will probably be higher than it is for a Back-End Developer. The good news? This isn’t a bad thing! Additionally, you’ll see trends over time for each developer type that make your recruitment spend much more predictable.
If your C-suite wants to launch a new desktop product by the end of this quarter, filling open Desktop Applications Developer roles is likely the top priority for your team. In this case, you have a defined hiring deadline and a budget.
But imagine that you’re planning for a mobile application launch later this year. Your “hiring” goals might be to strengthen your pipeline, or to improve your company’s reputation in the developer community. Overall, you might end up spending more to hire for those roles, but only because your talent acquisition strategy was intentionally designed for long-term success.
For developer jobs with months-long recruitment strategies, use this free guide to calculate and track your cost-per-hire. It includes an easy-to-use document that tracks the timelines and costs for each of your tactics, which will ultimately help you justify your spend to your management team.
Speaking of defending your team’s budget, most executives will want to see more than an overall cost-per-technical-hire. If you were to tell them that you spent an average of $17,000 per technical hire last quarter, they would probably ask for more context for such a large number. Calculating this metric for each developer role gives them that context.
Put yourself in your manager’s shoes. You likely wouldn’t be happy to hear an overall cost of $25,000 per developer, either. This is why it’s critical to break it down by each role for your executives. Now, let’s say that you actually spent $7,000 to fill one immediate need on the team and invested an additional $10,000 on an employer branding campaign in preparation for another. That sentence alone makes it much easier for any of your colleagues to digest your tech recruitment spend last quarter.