5 creative ways to find & attract developers (with resourceful links & guides)

There once was a time when innovative tech companies could simply post a job opening and get flooded with applications. That time is no more. We are facing a serious shortage of tech talent, expected to get worse. 

If you’re struggling to attract and hire developers to your organization, here’s 5 ways to get creative and increase your developer candidate pipeline.

1. Find developers on Slack

Don’t go fishing in an empty pond. It’s not that there's anything wrong with posting tech openings on LinkedIn, but on this matter we will do ourselves a huge favor by considering other options.

Actually, there is a whole ecosystem of other channels - like GitHub, Reddit, StackOverflow, Twitter, Twitch and Quora. But let’s focus on one – Slack, which can be a great option for sourcing and attracting tech people to your business.

Slack is filled with programming channels and online communities for tech people. Although, you’ll have to join them before browsing them. Since there are a countless amount of these communities, you’re probably not gonna want to join them all. 

Finding the right Slack channels to hop in to can be a challenge, but luckily there are plenty of third part heroes on the world wide web who can help you out. 

Find Slack channels to go fishing in

– Slofile: Search channels with keywords, and scroll trending, popular and new channels.

Medium: A categorized list of 400 Slack channels.

Standuply: A categorized list of 200 Slack channels.

Techbeacon: 46 free-to-join Slack Channels for Developers.

By scrolling through the channels and messages, you’ll likely get a good idea of the candidates’ potential and expertise level. And since Slack is a tool for communication, it’s a natural way of sending and receiving messages outside of threads.

Another creative option is to engage in community discussions yourself, or invite someone from your tech team to do so. It’s an opportunity to boost your employer brand and increase awareness among potential future hires. 

And please, follow the etiquette for recruiting. If you start spamming impersonal job offers, you’re likely to get kicked out of the group. Try introducing yourself to begin with, and provide general information about your company before posting any proposal.

A quick guide to sourcing on Slack

1. Pinpoint channels that’s relevant for your opening.

2. Get permission to join and get acquainted with the guidelines and rules.

3. Browse discussions and introduce yourself.

4. Find interesting candidates and start communicating with them.

5. Build genuine relationships with candidates and ask for referrals.

Bonus: Engage in channel discussions, increase awareness and boost employer brand.

2. Make Reddit your recruitment friend

Reddit is definitely not a recruitment platform – but it’s a forum that’s largely loved by tech talent. And with a little finesse, you may maneuver it to fit your goals. There are many talented developers on Reddit, even though some of them have (very) silly usernames. 

Just like Slack, Reddit will allow you to browse discussions about development and programming, as well as checking out participants’ previous activities on the platform. 

But, and that’s a big but, Reddit was created as an anonymous forum, which means you won’t be able to see the real names of posters, and you likely won’t have any success in being way too forthright. 

Developers are not really known for their huge love for recruiters.  You can easily create your own profile to message potential candidates on Reddit, but make sure to do it with style and caution. You could  easily scare someone off by being too pushy.

Developers appreciate their anonymity, as well as genuity and the feeling of actually being understood. If you can’t speak their language and fit into their culture, maybe there’s someone else in your team that is more suited to take on the task? 

A Reddit guide for newbies

Reddit is a social media platform with communities where people can dive into their interests, hobbies and passions.

Registered users submit content to the site such as links, text posts, images, and videos, which are then voted up or down by other members. The more upvotes a post gets, the more popular it becomes, and the higher up it appears on its respective subreddit or the front page.

The site name is a play on the words "I read it." Reddit member registration is free, and it is required to use the website's basic features. The site has hundreds of subcommunities, known as subreddits. Each subreddit has a specific topic, such as technology, politics or music.

Commenting is one of Reddit's core features, and it is the primary way for users to interact with each other, besides private messaging.

Reddit is one of the social sites that started the whole social media thing. But compared to other platforms, it’s not a place where people are catching up on family and friends or passing time, Redditors are looking to learn, read and debate important topics and issues in their life and interests.

The audience of Reddit is fairly evenly split between male and female, where the average user is 35 years old and has an income of ~ 42 000 SEK / month.

In order to be a successful Redditor – learn the lingo and get familiar with the rules (not only for Reddit itself, but also for each specific Subreddit you dive into).

3. Display and source on online marketplaces

Marketplaces are a great (and quite simple) way of discovering tech talent. You can search for candidates on Gigster, AngeList, Upwork or here on DoubleCloud.

But when you do, make sure to pitch your organization and opportunity flawlessly and in line with what actually matters to developers. And what is it that matters? you might be thinking. Well, let’s start with what doesn’t. 

“I don’t care about yoga classes. I don’t like mandatory-ish social activities with an enforced fun dynamic. I don’t fall for bogus “unlimited” vacation days. I don’t really care about food if it just means you expect 60+ hour weeks. I don’t like fancy open office plans that are impossible to work in.”

– says Joe Wezorek, professional Software Engineer in a Quora answer.

In general: skip fluffy or/and hyped up descriptions with tons of soft values and perks that are likely to be of no importance to the people you’re trying to reach. Yoga classes, social activities and fancy open offices are likely not gonna get you far.

Ability to learn and grow in the profession, values that align with theirs, a competitive compensation package, and a kickass tech team already in place probably will.

Also – speak their language, not yours! And do your research. Nothing annoys developers more than recruiters reaching out with opportunities that don't even match their skills and experience. 

Here on Doublecloud it’s easy (and free) to post your job opening and display it to qualified candidates. Just sign up and follow the guide below. 

Display your job opening on DoubleCloud

1. Sign up on DoubleCloud.

2. Add your company in the Employer menu on the top right

3. Create a career page with 5 images that displays your company and opening, a description of your business and a few words about why a candidate should choose to join you.

4. Create your job opening, add a job description, a profile description and essentials like where, to what extent, salary model and skills required

5. Get ready to receive applications! We’ll notify you when someone applies.

Bonus: share the opening on socials and ask your colleagues and network to refer.

4. Scan Quora for talented contributors

Just like Slack and Reddit, Quora is a great place to source for developers. On Quora you can browse answers in questions about software development and programming (or anything else that might be relevant in your case) and stumble upon excellent candidates.

Unlike Reddit, people on Quora are not anonymous, which makes it possible for you to find and reach them on another platform or channel. 

A great example of this type of recruitment was the Python enthusiast Manoj Memana Jaakumar, who posted a script he had written as an answer to the question “What are the best Python scripts you’ve ever seen?”. A couple of weeks later he got contacted by a startup who had read his answer, offering an interview, and later on a job, which he took.

"16 days after the answer was written, on a fine Thursday evening, I received a message in my inbox from an employee at the company. He asked me whether I would like to attend an interview at the company. I was spellbound. I did not know how to react. For somebody who is obsessed about working in a startup, this was just too good an offer."

– says Manoj Memana Jayakumar, Software Engineer, in a Quora answer

Another profit, with using Quora for sourcing, is that developers tend to provide links to their GitHubs, making it easier for you to assess their skills. 

Quora spaces worth checking out

Level Up Coding: Software Development Best Practices, Tech & IT Career Path, Learning to Code.

Code: Novice or Advanced, we have advice. Start programming or optimize your code!

Product Owners: Tips and tools for Product Owners who want to succeed.

Technology Careers: Shared wisdom from Experts for Managing a successful Technology Career.

Software Engineering Experiences: All SE experiences ranging from interviews to day-to-da activities.

5. Use an outreach tool

It’s not just any outreach tool we’re referring to, it’s obviously our own. Through years of experience in recruitment, it has gotten very clear to us that one of the biggest struggles that recruiters face is reaching, attracting and hiring tech talent. Therefore we’ve developed a solution. 

The outreach tool allows you to reach thousands of potential candidates all over the world in a few clicks. Just enter keywords like location or programming language and receive a prospect list of matching candidates, together with their GitHub and/or LinkedIn profile. With another click you can send them an email and pitch your opportunity.

By using a tool like this one, you fast-forward and skip time consuming sourcing and screening on various platforms, which means you can put all your time and effort into what truly matters - communicating and creating genuine connections with matching talent.

 This is a great way to reach and build long term relationships with talented candidates, who might even (if the vibe is right) refer people in their network to your openings and fuel your candidate pipeline.  

A guide to sourcing on DoubleCloud

1. Sign up, add your company and head to the outreach tool.

2. Browse among 200 000+ developers, search with keywords, locations and programming languages.

3. View and screen profiles via GitHub or/and LinkedIn.

4. Hand pick suitable candidates.

5. Reach out with a personal message, including a link to your opening.

6. Follow up and nurture the relationship.

Bonus: Create a career page and job post, where candidates can apply and where you can activate the referral program.

Want to try it out? Book a demo with Henrik, or sign up and enjoy your 20 free credits. If you'd like to read more about our offers – check them out here.

Hoping our advice will tickle your creativity, come to use and ease your recruitment struggle, the DoubleCloud squad wish you Good luck and have fun Tech Hunting!

Published: Aug 24, 2022