Software engineers are vital to the success of many businesses. With unique, hard-to-find skill sets and an integral role in creating and maintaining essential technology, software engineers can be some of the most essential players on your team.

Finding the perfect candidate for your open job position can prove to be an arduous process if you don’t know where to look. A recruiter may be able to help you find the best software engineering talent and connect you with the perfect candidate for your open job position.

How do I recruit and hire a great software engineer?

There are two main ways to recruit and hire a great software engineer: using a recruiter and direct hiring.

Direct hiring is also an option when looking for a great software engineer if you’re looking to skip out on some of the fees that can come along with hiring a recruitment company. However, this process can prove to be tiring. You may not be able to easily access as many qualified candidates as a recruiter would, and you may lose more money in the end because of reduced productivity from understaffing during the candidate search.

Software engineer recruiters and headhunters

Recruiters and headhunters are external organizations whose main focus is to connect job seekers and employers. Many companies prefer using a recruiter to find software engineers because they can keep their current staff focused on the job at hand instead of requiring someone to switch their focus to the candidate search when the company is already understaffed.

When looking to hire a software engineer, there are multiple types of recruiters to consider working with including local recruiting agencies, regional companies, national recruiting firms, and executive headhunting agencies. Each agency has its own expertise and specific niches in the job search market. They also have their own unique compensation models, which usually involve a combination of contingency pay and retainer.

Consider your recruiter as a matchmaker. By hiring a well-reputed recruiter who understands your organization’s wants and needs, you can take advantage of the recruiter’s large network of talent, save time, and more easily connect with the right software engineer for the job.

Direct hiring

Direct hiring happens when a company makes a hire without the use of a third party or recruitment service. This means each candidate must be reviewed by and have interviews with your company instead of being vetted by a staffing agency.

Employers often ask their existing employees to find and interview new talent for open positions. Going through with a direct hire through an internal employee doesn’t cost your company any additional fees, but it may take a long time if the employee is busy with other duties or lacks experience in hiring. Although direct hiring can be cost-effective, it may not result in the best candidates when compared with the quality of candidates that recruiters can offer your company.

Many employers choose direct hiring because they hope it will save them money. While this strategy eliminates staffing fees, it often results in less qualified candidates or a drawn-out employee search, which can cost you more in the long run.

How do I attract software engineers and developers to my company?

There are many things you can do to help attract the right software engineers and developers to your company. The position must be appealing on a variety of different levels for the right candidate to show interest in your job.

Most software engineers will look at the salary that you offer first when determining whether or not to take your job. Do your research to find out what salaries are offered in similar positions in your local area. Make sure to factor in the amount of specialized experience your potential hire must possess in order to do the job effectively. From there, figure out a competitive salary that is on the higher end of the salary range. If this isn’t possible, be sure to include exciting benefits and job perks that may catch a software engineer’s eye, like great health insurance, extensive paid vacation, profit sharing, flexible hours, tuition assistance, and free snacks.

Company culture is another factor that plays a large role in engineers being interested in your company. Encouragement (rather than discouragement) to take PTO, work-life balance, and flexible in-office and remote working opportunities are all of high importance in the software engineering field. Most software engineers know that their job requires them to work 50+ hours a week. Letting your potential hires know that you have systems in place to help them remain happy and comfortable in their position at your company could be the make or break during the hiring process.

Offering additional perks alongside these exciting factors in company culture may also drive software engineers to your job offer. Some common company benefits include more extensive insurance programs, help with outstanding student loans, and reimbursement for athletic clubs and fitness programs.

What do the best software engineer recruiters look for in a candidate?

The ideal software engineer looks different for every company and every position. Knowing which hard and soft skills to look for alongside important character and personality traits can help you connect with the perfect candidate.

Hard skills and qualifications

The hard skills and qualifications that a software engineer or developer possesses are often crucial factors in hiring decisions. Although each hiring situation is different, there are a few things to look for when considering adding a new member to your team.

The amount of experience a prospective candidate has in the field is sometimes the easiest way to tell whether a software engineer is a good fit for your company. If the job position requires less expertise, then someone with 2-3 years of experience or even an enthusiastic entry-level job seeker may be perfect for the role. However, if you’re looking for someone with high levels of expertise and management skills, then you may want to look for someone with at least 5 years of experience in software engineering.

When hiring new staff, it’s always important to check that candidates can show you proven results and proof of work in their design process. Analytics and portfolios are often a great way for candidates to prove what they’re capable of.

Hard skills that most software engineers need include high proficiency in multiple programming languages, knowledge of at least one scripting language, object-oriented design, and comfort with version control systems such as Git. You may also want them to have experience with GWT, Spring MVC, or other application development systems. Some roles require candidates to have deep knowledge of relational databases, such as SQL and ORM technologies.

Soft skills and character traits

Hard skills are not the only traits to look for when hiring a software engineer or developer. A candidate’s personality and their ability to work as a team are huge factors when determining if they are right for the job.

Ideally, you will find a software engineer who is willing and eager to work on a team. Look for candidates who are dedicated to collaboration and team-building, as their hard skills can only get them part of the way to success in their position. Ideally, your software engineer should be as well-rounded of a team player as they are excellent at their tech skills.

You should also look for people who display personal character traits that align with your company’s values. Are they curious, enthusiastic, and excited about what they do? Are they ambitious while remaining humble? Are they friendly and approachable? These are all questions to ask yourself throughout the hiring process to ensure you’re not only hiring an experienced engineer, but a candidate worthy of joining your team.

The desire to grow is another trait that is important in a software developer. The software engineering field is always changing, so finding someone who is willing and eager to put in the work to continue learning is a high priority. Look for someone who wants to grow individually and with your company and desires to continue learning through additional training and educational opportunities.

Why you should use a software developer recruitment agency for your next hire

Using a recruitment agency is a great way to find the perfect software engineer or developer for your company. Although you can expect to pay the recruiter a fee, the outcome is often more successful than when organizations try to hire directly. Recruitment agencies can do all of the tiring work that comes with the hiring process and present you with only the best, most qualified candidates for your open job position.

LG Resources, a top-notch recruiting agency in the United States, saves clients time and money while increasing all areas of efficiency that are key to a successful business. Our agency focuses on comprehensive candidate screening processes, resulting in a 96% client retention rate and our status as one of the fastest growing staffing firms in the nation. We provide companies with high quality applicants who are well-equipped, skilled, and ready to achieve everything you hope for.

If you’re looking to hire new talent, contact LG Resources today for expert assistance and access to our vast candidate pool. We offer the talent and services you need to increase your productivity and efficiency. Get in touch today!