From small website glitches to major issues with the customer journey, technical issues can be a block to a successful marketing strategy. Often, strong results rely on great developers.

In the past, finding great developer talent has been relatively straightforward, allowing brands to expand their tech team as their marketing and business grows. However, over the last few years, demand across all areas of web development has increased exponentially, resulting in a global shortage which many are finding a barrier to growth.

To gain some insight, we chatted with Dr. Jost Schatzmann, Managing Director of the tech recruitment platform Honeypot. Read below for his advice on recruiting devs in 2023.

How can brands make the recruitment process for developers as efficient as possible?

Recruiting developers can be challenging. However, brands can take several steps to accelerate the recruitment process and make it less effort for the company and the talent:

  1. Define the job requirements clearly: First, know who you’re looking for, including the required must-have skills and qualifications. Second, know what you’re flexible about and align this with everyone involved in the hiring process. Don’t waste your time looking for unicorns.  
  2. Know what your company has to offer: A surprising number of companies expect talents to be honest about themselves but choose generic buzzwords to describe their own company and culture. Take the time to define what makes your company unique. Be able to explain why talents should work for you in honest and simple language.    
  3. Leverage specialized online platforms where developers actively look for jobs: Posting tech vacancies on generic job boards, or spamming talents on social networks rarely leads to relevant contacts. Make use of platforms that connect actively seeking tech talents with companies to reduce your time-to-hire.  
  4. Conduct a fast and well-structured interview process: Most companies lose talents by making them wait for the next step in the process. Keep up the momentum by ensuring that the next call is always within the next 2-3 working days. Arrange the process such that the time from first contact to offer is less than 2 weeks.  

Do you believe there is a shortage of experienced developers?

Yes. The rapid pace of technological innovation is turning almost all companies into “software companies”. Businesses rely on software to run their operations. They need tech teams to deliver value to their customers through digital channels and experiences. This has led to an increasing demand for software developers across almost all industries.

In Germany alone, for example, the number of unfilled vacancies in the tech sector was estimated at 137,000 in 2022 according to BITKOM, the association of companies working in the digital economy.   

However, it’s worth noting that there is also a significant supply of developers, including those who are just starting their careers and those with intermediate levels of experience. Companies can also significantly increase the size of their talent pool by being open to international hires, non-local language speakers, and remote work. 

What are developers looking for in a new company in 2023?

Career choices are of course highly personal decisions, but we see patterns confirmed in our platform data and in surveys that we conduct in the developer community: 

  1. Team environment and culture: Developers value a positive and supportive work environment, where they can collaborate with colleagues and work on interesting and challenging projects. They are drawn to companies with a culture that aligns with their values and provides opportunities for work-life balance.
  2. Learning opportunities: Developers tend to be lifelong learners and seek opportunities for professional development and skill-building. They are often attracted to companies that allow them to try out new technologies, offer mentorship from experienced colleagues, and create opportunities for career advancement.
  3. Technology stack: Developers want to work with the latest technologies and tools, and they are attracted to companies that use state-of-the-art software development practices. They also value a company’s commitment to open-source software and contributions to the tech community.
  4. Compensation and Benefits: Money does not come first for most developers, but competitive compensation packages that include a fair salary, company benefits and flexible work arrangements help to create an attractive offer. 

Has the increased coverage of AI tools impacted demand for developers?

Many software engineers and data scientists who have been in the field of machine learning for years regard the recent media attention on “AI tools” as exciting but also as somewhat overhyped. They see the advances around Chat GPT as a continuous improvement rather than a “revolutionary iPhone moment”. It has also become a bit of a running joke in the developer community to talk about “Chat GPT making all developers redundant”.

More realistically, AI and automation may change the nature of some tech jobs in the future, but it is unlikely that they will make developers redundant. We expect that new tools will help to make developers more productive, for instance when creating “boilerplate code”, test cases or documentation. Developers and software companies will need to stay on top of these trends to remain competitive.

It’s also likely that demand for developers with expertise in “AI-related” fields like machine learning or natural language processing will continue to grow. Developers who can integrate such models and tools into existing systems and applications will also likely see more demand and new opportunities to work on innovative and challenging projects.

About Honeypot

Launched in October 2015, Honeypot is Europe’s tech-focused job platform. The mission is to get tech professionals great jobs. Honeypot helps Software Developers, DevOps & Testing Engineers, Engineering Leaders, and Data Professionals find jobs they love.