Hiring the right technical skills is one of the top priorities for companies relying on technologies, according to CompTIA’s 2023 Industry Outlook.

Still, the challenge remains. 46% of HR leaders anticipate high attrition rates of in-demand tech talents caused by the current market situation and “the grass is greener elsewhere” syndrome. It includes:

  • talent scarcity
  • skyrocketing salaries
  • increased management costs caused by inflation rates

There is hypercompetition for the best engineers.

Hiring time averages 36 to 45 days for businesses. Startups need six months to hire a new specialist.

The talent shortage will lead to 85 million unfilled positions by 2030, resulting in an estimated business cost of $8.452B in unrealized revenues.

In this situation, businesses must act effectively and efficiently to hire and integrate talented developers. It is wise to consider alternative ways to improve your competitive edge when in-house hiring slows beyond acceptable limits.

Consider staff augmentation.

Below is IT Craft’s guide to help you hire top software developers for your project.

1 Why Hire Top Developers?

Although hiring the best software developers is taxing, the benefits are bountiful.

Companies that hire best software developers enjoy:

  • optimized processes
  • improved ROA (return on assets), 16.2% for top performers compared to 3.5% for tech laggards
  • improved cost-effectiveness
  • transformational capacity needed for sustainable growth

Based on a report by Boston Consulting Group, businesses investing in competent software developers grow 50% faster than their competitors.

Here is how talented software developers increase companies’ bottom lines:

  • Productivity growth

Experienced software developers have higher performance and positively affect the entire company. According to a study by the National Bureau of Economic Research, when the company increases the number of top-performing developers by 1%, it leads to a 4% boost in company’s productivity in return.

  • Creativity and disruption

Top talents work proactively. Finding solutions to its identified challenges helps the company gain a completely different position in the market and leave principle competitors behind. Companies should listen to their top talents and find the best application to their skills. When talented engineers see no growth opportunities within a company, they will do it independently by creating a startup.

Remember Steve Wozniak offered his computer design to Hewlett-Packard. HP refused. The rest is history of which HP played no part.

  • Solution quality

Experienced and talented developers think several steps ahead. They produce flexible, modular architecture that is easy to expand and maintain. Total cost of software ownership decreases. Also, clear maintainable code increases chances of retaining developers for a longer time.

  • Cost savings

Top-level engineers focus assiduously on security and quality assurance, enabling businesses to eliminate data breaches and user privacy issues. (Data breaches are a money pit. Lack of security for user privacy is illegal.) According to a McKinsey report, within the last three years alone, regulators fined North-American tech companies over $5B for failing to comply with data rules and provide information on breaches and affected data.

  • Brand reputation and trust

According to another McKinsey survey, consumers equate data protection and trustworthiness as important as price and convenience. 46% of all consumers seriously consider moving away from a company when its privacy policy and use of customers’ personal data is unclear. Hence, it is crucial to outline a transparent privacy policy and hire top software developers capable of implementing it.

  • Challenges of choosing staff augmentation provider

Follow the example of 76% of executives: when top talents are unavailable for a quick hire in your domestic market, broaden your search and outsource at least some of your tasks.

Still, risks remain that your chosen staff augmentation isn’t a good fit for you—more time wasted! To avoid this, you (as a client) must carefully focus on potential pitfalls.

Keep these in mind throughout your vendor selection process:

  • Quality

Cost savings are among the top reasons for outsourcing. However, they become slim to none when source code quality is low. CISQ estimates losses of US companies caused by poor software quality by $2.41T in 2022. The long-term reasons for increased expenses include:

  • delayed deliveries
  • high support and maintenance costs
  • inability to scale/expand

Check the company portfolio. Read reviews and recommendations from former clients to evaluate the quality and complexity of completed projects.

  • Expertise

Expertise has a direct impact on team performance and quality. Expert teams take over client requirements or an existing project quickly and effectively. They have the same mind stack as your in-house team, initiating clear communication.

Go through the company’s website and profiles in directories to get a clear impression. Check reviews on how its engineers perform and how well they get on with clients.

  • Trustworthiness

Trust is the top concern for many companies seeking to enhance their team. Unreliable developers could ruin all your project processes.

A thorough preliminary research is essential. Check the company’s cases. Read reviews from clients on Clutch while evaluating project size and complexity. Pay attention to recommendations.

If doubts exist, ask for references. Start small with a pilot task to see the engineering routine and approach to task completion.

  • Scalability

Scalability is crucial for adapting to evolving project requirements.

According to a Project Management Institute (PMI) report, 69% of projects suffer from limited scalability. It is always wise to discuss possibilities of team growth with a prospective partner when you wish to hire software developers on a long-term basis. Or look for a vendor capable of adding developers fast.

Of note: If project-based cooperation is planned, limited scalability does not pose a problem. You will transfer the completed project to a new, bigger team.

  • Velocity

Speed matters.

Atlassian State of software development report states 57% of companies prioritize speed of delivery. The vendor’s developers must be able to work autonomously while also able to coordinate their efforts with the entire team. They must be an asset for you to achieve regular, consistent deliveries.

Select the provider with an established workflow and completed projects on automation and optimization. Ask about team reaction to unforeseen challenges. Ensure everyone has a clear vision of how to meet them.

2 What to Look for When Hiring a Developer (Nine Key Factors)

Just as you do with in-house team members, you must follow several steps when hiring external developers.

how to hire a software developer

Here are some important ones dissected in three main stages:

PRE-SELECTION

It makes sense to start with planning and clarification:

01 Identify your needs.

Needs are different. You might:

  • seek specific, rare expertise
  • increase capacity
  • make an urgent replacement
  • optimize costs
  • establish a long-term partnership

Decide why you want to hire software developers for team augmentation.
Prioritize your needs.

Narrow your search criteria.

Set the right expectations for the new team member(s).

02 Think of capacity and seniority level.

Determine what skills you need and how much scope you want to cover with external force—you might need several specialists.

Consider lowering the seniority level to close positions faster. Obviously, middle-level engineers are less rare and expensive.Add a dedicated project manager when your onsite management is overloaded with tasks.

03 Set a timeframe

Set a completion date. But be realistic about the time you need to hire the best software developers.

Make sure you have enough time to:

  • understand core gaps and required expertise level
  • do proper market research
  • understand expertise level of a vendor
  • remove ambiguities in contract details
  • return to previous vendor choice if your first choice does not pass during probationary period

SELECTION

Focus on careful vendor selection even if hiring time is limited:

01 Make a list of vendors.

Look for evidence of successful experience relevant to your requirements, ensuring you hire the best software developers for your project.

First-hand experience is the best. Ask friends and colleagues for recommendations. If those recommendations have no or less-than-perfect experience, browse through resources where you can read real feedback, such as Clutch, Goodfirms, or Upwork.

Check company websites. Go through cases, offered solutions, and client testimonials. Make sure your selection provides the services you need.

Make a list of 5 – 10 vendors to contact for candidates.

02 Filter candidates.

This step consumes considerable time and effort. You must carefully evaluate available options in order to select the best one.

Send requirements to the selected vendors. Study their response. For instance, it takes IT Craft 3+ business days to:

  • Pick up engineers matching main criteria (hard skills, working style, and values alignment).
  • Check their availability.
  • Send CVs to the client and schedule interviews.
  • Look for the best balance during interviews with engineers.

Select candidates who have necessary technical expertise, respond fast, and provide a track record of successful cooperation.

03 Negotiate cooperation details.

Take extra care during this step to eliminate unrealistic expectations. Discuss cooperation details, including:

  • access and security policies
  • availability within specified hours
  • communication and reports (frequency and formats)
  • contact point on the vendor’s side (in case any emergencies occur)
  • timeline and budget limitations
  • renewal options

Cover specified points in the agreement with the IT staff augmentation services provider.

Decide on contract terms that fit best to your project constraints:

  • managed services
  • time and materials
  • fixed price

POST-SELECTION

Onboarding matters. If you want hired software developers to maximize their abilities, you must provide proper integration in the company processes:

01 Start small.

Start cooperation with a new vendor by assigning a pilot task or setting a probationary period. Both help you test your expectations against reality.

On one hand, you carefully evaluate new team members’ performance and attitude before trusting them with important tasks. On the other, probation is the time to adjust processes when remote cooperation from different time zones has never been a part of your plan. You check workflow for bottlenecks and conflicts.

02 Coordinate onboarding.

Delays occur when software developers do not start working because they lack access to the specific client resources.

Hence, it is essential that you:

  • Grant required permissions to tools and infrastructure.
  • Provide unrestricted access to knowledge base.
  • Appoint people on your side to respond when questions arise.

Add augmented staff into your workflow, e.g., create corporate accounts, whitelist IPs, or add to the task board/internal Slack channels.

03 Provide training and feedback.

Treat every developer as part of your team.

Do not leave external software developers alone. Initiate training when specific policies apply. Explain how things work on your project.

To facilitate cooperation, provide vendors and developers feedback after receiving their reports.

Also, encourage developers to express their reasoned suggestions and opinions. An outsider’s look may help you streamline processes, enable more deliveries within the same timeline, or increase software consistency.

3 What to Avoid When Hiring a Developer

Failure might occur for several reasons on both ends. It could be:

  • lack of vision by the client
  • miscommunication and chaotic processes on both sides
  • insufficient expertise by assigned engineers
  • dishonest provider
how to hire software developers
  • Leave no room for guesswork

Ensure 100% clarity between you and developers. They understand your goals, concerns, requirements, and limitations. Be clear about your expectations from staff to eliminate conflicts, e.g., the hired software developers must provide at least a 4-hour overlap with your business hours.

  • Do not limit options

Rearrange your priorities and change your search criteria when vendors from the selected location fall short of your standards. For instance, software developers from South-Eastern Asia might provide the least expensive hourly rate but not be a good fit due to the significant time difference hampering good communication.

  • Evade hidden costs

A dishonest provider could be a problem. The vendor might want to hook you with an enticingly low estimate, hoping to sign a contract then later increase costs of provided services via upsells.

When you see an estimate that is “too good to be true” with no clear itemization of what services are included, it is wise to look for an alternative.

  • Never skip verification

Dishonest providers often use this trick: they assign a senior engineer who impresses you with their expertise and experience during the interview. Then, they provide you with a less experienced replacement.

Schedule an interview with each single developer. Check each developer’s identity when they start their work for you.

  • Do not let vendor dependence happen

You, as an owner, must keep fundamental control over your software product. Ensure hired software developers update project documentation and share their accomplishments with your team.

If developers do not provide knowledge transfer, you might inadvertently slip into risky dependence. Avoid this.

4 Define What Type of Developer You Want to Hire

Overall, it is critical to clearly define and understand your ideal candidate. Think about its role and responsibilities. Determine the required level and tech specialization.

Based on expertise level:

  • Junior – works on simple, entry-level tasks under supervision of experienced developers.
  • Middle – knows several development tools; works independently using best development practices.
  • Senior – high-level position, engineers with comprehensive software development, troubleshooting, and optimization knowledge.
  • Principal – highly advanced position, decides on strategic aspects such as software architecture, development direction, etc.
how to hire software developers for startup

An important note. Determine your exact needs regarding scope, complexity, and tech stack. Save money by assigning specific tasks to the right person.

For instance, middle engineers are less expensive than principal engineers. However, if you ask them to design project architecture, you might need to redevelop the entire piece of software due to poor architectural decisions.

! IT Craft Expertise

IT Craft clients enjoy a proven, straightforward path to successful cooperation. Five steps apply:

01 Initial request

Send us a description of your needs.

02 Selection

We check your requirements and limitations, then select the best developers, matching your criteria.

03 Conduct interviews

We coordinate interviews, ensuring you can evaluate skills and make your own impression.

04 Candidates and cooperation approval

Once you approve candidates you prefer, we manage all agreement details together, eliminating misunderstandings.

05 Onboarding and kickoff

When the agreement is finalized and signed, developers integrate into your team, working on assigned tasks.

software development process

Below are three of many examples when IT Craft talents increased client’s bottom line by taking over software development activities:

Adorama

What the client needed: Adorama’s ecommerce platform powers six retail businesses. The need for fast team scaling emerged when the client’s in-house team faced platform modernization, expansion, and maintenance. The client sought high performance: each extra millisecond would drive away customers from purchase.

How we helped: IT Craft assigned an engineering team that quickly expanded. The team was composed of software engineers, QAs, and system administrators. It focused on tech realization of the client team’s vision, ensuring constant updates, top performance on user devices, and 99.8+ availability.

Adorama it craft testimonials

MyPlace Connect

What the client needs: The startup built a custom marketing system to increase customer loyalty, receive feedback, and send personalized offers. The client’s focus on growth and improvement required a team that could help migrate to new infrastructure and scale the system efficiently.

How we helped: The IT Craft senior DevOps team analyzed the client’s needs and offered a migration plan. The team then worked on gradual migration. Now IT Craft helps with maintenance and updates, improving software consistency and uptime.

MyPlace MyPlace testimonial

Amesto

What the client needs: The client was a major Scandinavian translation agency. Its customer portal streamlined customer access to translation services. The company focused on its expansion and improvement and needed development experts capable of working efficiently under growing scope.

How we helped: IT Craft assigned software engineers who worked directly with the client, acting as part of the team. IT Craft developers completed required tasks on time, helping Amesto gain a competitive edge in the market. For instance, they integrated machine translation functionality eligible for handling sensitive information.

Amesto it craft testimonial

6 Benefits of Our Software Developers

Being in the market since 2001, IT Craft delivers on time and budget to its clients from North America, EU, Australia, and Middle East.

The company invests in development culture, constant learning, and process optimization to ensure that software deliveries are:

  • transparent
  • predictable
  • uninterrupted

As a client, you enjoy working with a reputed provider and getting access to:

Expertise

The result is faster because of improved productivity. Project architecture is based on your long-term plans to simplify your growth.

Cost optimization

You save up to 50% of your initial development budget due to a lower hourly rate compared to the local market and elimination of indirect costs.

Immediate project start

Engineers start working once you have approved their candidatures and cooperation details. You keep up with an aggressive deadline.

Scalability

Do you need to handle seasonal workload spikes or constantly growing scope? You can add talents on both short- and long-term basis, as often and as many as required.

Flexibility

IT Craft’s wide talent pool lets you add specific experts for changing requirements needed to improve consistency, expand functionality, or scale your system.

Knowledge sharing

Apart from well-commented source code, you receive updated project documentation. IT Craft engineers help with consulting when requested.

SUMMING UP

IT staff augmentation services can help you close talent gaps efficiently.

However, you should choose wisely. Every unsuccessful cooperation will cost you not only money wasted but lost time.

You need a proven, reputable vendor who knows how to help you and provides a good fit in terms of costs, scalability, and working culture.

FAQs

How do I find and hire a software developer?

The algorithm is similar for in-house hiring and staff augmentation.

Use the following four-step process: 

  1. Decide on specific skills and describe them in the job opening.
  2. Place your announcement on job boards. Look for developers in dedicated communities. Ask agencies for help.
  3. Collect CVs. Arrange interviews. Request they do skill tests.
  4. Assign a test period with the selected developer.
Is it hard to hire software developers?

Yes, skill shortage is real. There are more job openings than candidates.

It is even harder to hire talented software developers due to surging talent competition. This is why companies looking for developers should think of both nice compensation and working environment. They also need to consider alternatives, such as staff augmentation.

How do I hire a talented developer?

The following hiring alternatives apply to talent search: 

  1. Looking in professional communities.
  2. Asking for references.
  3. Following industry conferences and events.
  4. Searching on online hiring platforms (Toptal, Upwork, Clutch).
  5. Cooperating with dedicated agencies.
Where do I find software developer candidates?

Consider the following lists of resources.

For independent hires: 

  • Job boards (Monster, Craigslist, Indeed)
  • Freelance platforms and marketplaces (Toptal, Wellfound, Upwork)
  • Stack Overflow
  • Social networks (LinkedIn)
  • Reddit
  • GitHub
  • Code challenge websites (Codewars)

For outstaffing companies:

  • Research directories (Clutch, Goodfirms)
  • Marketplaces (Upwork, Fiverr)
  • Social networks (LinkedIn)
  • Google search
  • Quora
  • References

Rate this article!

8075 ratings, average: 4.97 out of 5