5 Criteria to Help Land a Top-Tier Developer

photo by Awesome Content

In the tech industry, hiring developers has become exceedingly tough. The COVID-19 pandemic made the hiring process significantly more difficult as well. A shift has occurred between recruiters and developers. In 2021, developers seemingly hold more power than ever. Recruiters, desperate to bring in talented individuals, were forced to acknowledge that their hiring system may be outdated.

Various recent studies reveal that the salary developers are being paid aren’t the primary focus. Let’s consider five criteria recruiters should look at to bring in highly qualified developers:

  1. Advancements in the workforce
  2. Balanced and flexible work hours
  3. Interesting challenges and problems available
  4. Culture and values of the company
  5. Salary (potential for bonuses, raises, etc)

Advancements in the Workforce

Contrary to most industries, developers in the tech industry generally enjoy advancing in the corporate business ladder. They want to learn and expand their skillset. Alternatively, instead of hiring externally, companies could promote current employees. That is, of course, subject to superior performance and being an asset to the business.

Balanced and Flexible Work Hours

Developers are currently in a position to rightfully push for flexible hours, as well as a balance with their work and home life. When hiring, consider offering flexibility to candidates to show them the company values their skills by giving them adequate time off.

Interesting Challenges and Problems Available

This is one of the most desired criteria among developers. Many of them enjoy solving difficult problems and challenges. It allows them to test, improve, and learn new skills. Often, developers may choose this kind of environment over one with higher pay but fewer challenges.

Culture and Values of the Company

The remote aspect of the tech industry has not affected this criteria for developers. In fact, as the world transitions to more face-to-face job opportunities, it’s still equally, if not more, important. A developer used to a laid back workplace may have difficulty adjusting to a rigid corporate culture. The same is true when reversed. Additionally, developers aren’t likely to want to work for a company if they don’t agree with the business’s values. They understand (as recruiters should) that this could cause problems down the road.


While offering a high salary isn’t doesn’t hold as much of a significant impact as it used to, it’s still a factor to consider. Developers who have children and family to care for may prefer a higher salary. However, with that salary, lower or higher, the benefits and potential for bonuses or raises may also affect a developer’s decision to become an employee. As a recruiter, learn more about the developer to determine what is important to him or her.

It All Comes Down to This

Ultimately, each developer is different. They all have varying skill sets and values. There will be developers who are accepting to compromises, but recruiters should be careful not to undermine the value of a developer’s skills… Nor should they turn a blind eye to that developer’s awareness of his or her potential value. Before reaching out to a developer, dig a little deeper and learn more about them for the best chance of successfully recruiting them.