It’s very difficult to find developers for a startup, and even more so if you want to hire your team members faster than the industry average (time for hiring a developer).
Tech startups are usually relying on early, not-yet-proven concepts that have some of the most amazing, talented and enthusiastic people working to make the magic happen.
Or, on the other hand, they are sometimes run by a single, passionate founder with a limited budget (and experience) that is in no position to compete against the main leaders in the industry.
On top of that, developers (and especially mid to senior-level devs) are usually seeking more stable employment opportunities that provide long-term job security, additional perks and ample room for personal and professional growth.
The brutal truth is that, for startups, the odds of succeeding are stacked against their favor.
However, many startups have recently outsourced their application development processes to third parties. And it makes sense: they (the startups) will focus on growth, while the technical tidbits are left for the outsourcers to figure out.
It’s a match made in heaven, and the stats are there to support the claim. Out of the entire outsourced workforce, 60% are IT professionals.
In the following article, I’ll shed some light on hiring developers faster for your startup without blowing up the work quality to smithereens.
Here’s where to start.
Identify the motivational factors
Having a plan beats not having a plan. One of the parts of this plan is to identify how your upcoming recruits could help your startup. Make a list of your priorities, including what you’re looking for in a developer.
A wrong hire will cost the startup more than a traditional company, and a terrible hire could run the startup to the ground.
Here’s what to consider when hiring for your startup.
Define the required tech stacks
It’s more common than conventional knowledge would imply, but startup owners often have limited insight into the intricacies of app development, including tech entrepreneurs.
But it makes perfect sense: their responsibilities are to get funding, keep the business afloat, innovate and grind until the company turns up some profit. What they aren’t responsible for: programming.
So, identifying the right tech stack for your engagement is a crucial step in the right direction. Some examples could be:
- Mobile app development - Java, Kotlin, Python, Dart
- Desktop app development - SQL, C++, Ruby, ASP.NET
- Cross-platform app development - Swift, React Native, Objective-C, Corona SDK
Optimize for fast growth and scalability
The current app market is an unequivocal competitive battlefield. More than 2000 apps are released on the Google Playstore daily. Meaning that, if you want to get your idea out there, you need to move and act really, really fast.
Furthermore, if you’re counting on external funding for your startup, you’ll need to have a “blueprint” to show to the potential investors.
The safest (and quickest) way to do this is to simply get to work as soon as possible. You will need to assemble a team of quality developers AND outline their responsibilities before they even begin working on the engagement.
Also, forget about doing everything by yourself. Even if you come from a programming background, responsibilities that fall outside top-level business management would not be ideal uses of your time.
Keep your budget in check
One of the key prerequisites for hiring a developer quickly is to know and stay within the limits of your budget. Early-stage startups, whether bootstrapped or helped by external investors, need cash.
Sometimes that could spill over into the hiring process as well. For example: candidate A is a very good software engineer with 6 years of experience in mobile app development for a Forbes top 500 company. On the other hand, candidate B is also a very good web developer, but they only have 1.5 years of experience working at a less-known startup.
Needless to say, developer A would be more expensive than developer B, so in this particular case, you may need to “bite the bullet” and hire the less-experienced (but equally talented) developer to save cash.
Decide the employment model
Generally speaking, there is more than one employment model available. Which one to choose will depend on the complexity, scale and language/framework requirements of the engagement.
If you’re building a smaller application, you might want to consider hiring on a per-engagement basis. This type of employment lacks flexibility, but developers will be paid at a fixed price. Typically, to save time, you can find tech talent like this on most of the popular freelance job boards online, including Upwork, Fiverr, and others.
An alternative to this, but with more flexibility, is the part-time hiring model. This type of employment allows you to assemble an even bigger development team and complete the project faster than otherwise. You will also have a direct channel of communication with the developers, as they will now officially operate under your startup’s banner.
Finally, there is the option to hire developers full-time. This model offers the most control over your team, but it’s also the most resource-intensive out of all three employment models because it involves more hours compared to the part-time model.
At Proxify, we offer the option to choose between part-time and full-time employment. Both models offer dedicated team members, full client support, and access to the Proxify dashboard from where you can manage and bill your team.
If you’re not interested in any of these three models, you can also book a call and we’ll find a personalized plan that works for you.
Verify the candidate’s expertise
Thoroughly checking your candidate’s background, experience and expertise, or, at least, knowing where to look to determine all of the above, will definitely save you time over the course of the entire hiring process.
Truth be told, there is a big difference between going through this step yourself, having someone help you, or outsourcing the entire thing to a third-party. Each approach has its benefits and drawbacks, but, at risk of repeating myself again, I will reiterate the following sentiment.
Namely, it’s not wise for startup founders to spend their time dealing with the minutiae of the business. Especially when it can be delegated, outsourced or handled by someone else internally.
Of course, there are exceptions. If you’re running a micro startup, writing job descriptions, or hiring and screening people is probably the one thing that you’d want to take part in personally. In any other case, an agency or a developer matching platform could significantly reduce the time it takes to hire new talent.
Finally, hiring a dedicated team of developers (assuming your startup is a software development company) requires a good amount of teamwork if you want the project to succeed. In other words: dedication, creativity, problem-solving proclivities, and the ability to work in a team are some of the most important skills a potential applicant could bring to the table. Everything else could be taught or learned.
At Proxify, we take the competency of our developers seriously. Hence, there are multiple steps before a developer could join our network (including testing for both hard and soft skills), and less than 2% out of all applicants make it that far.
Conduct the interview and make the hiring decision
Whether you’ve found your candidate through social media, acquaintance referrals, or other online job postings, now you have to conduct the interview and reach a decision.
Some CEOs like doing the interviews themselves, while other startup founders prefer their internal hiring managers to take care of things in their stead. Most often, there is a hybrid model where the candidates go through 2-3 different interview rounds and the CEO makes the final decision.
However, interview processes can often be a lengthy, stressful, unpredictable, and overall a huge energy-depleting endeavor – both for interviewees and those conducting the interview as well. Not to mention, the startup is under enormous pressure to speed up the process before it drags on for too long (more time to bring in new talent equals more money spent on getting it).
At Proxify, all of this is done beforehand, meaning that our talented team of hiring managers have already pre-screened all promising developers and have welcomed the ones who passed the tests onto the platform.
This enables us to find a match quickly – regardless of the startup’s needs, size and scale.
Usually, things can either be done quickly or well. Now, with Proxify, both things are possible at the same time.
Get in touch with us and receive the perfect developer match in a matter of days, “blasting” through all these hiring steps without experiencing a dip in candidate quality.