Guide on How to Hire Developers For Your Startups

How to Hire Developers

Startups have become a norm in the business environment in the last decade. New business ideas, innovations, and the drive to build solid consumer value have fueled the rise of startups across industries. The IT boom in recent years has made it mandatory for startups to be tech-savvy to survive against competition. Business analytics and Artificial Intelligence have become commonplace for large businesses and startups are soon catching up on the trend. How to Hire Developers –

To build a website, a mobile application, or an IT infrastructure for the office, a dedicated software development team is required. Some startups are based entirely out of the internet and social media and thus the demand for smart and qualified developers is immense. Hiring the right talent and building a strong team is essential for a startup in the initial stages of inception. Building on an already established team is also required sometimes for startups in their early years. The developer team is key to building prototypes, websites, or apps for the startup. These are critical for developing a brand image, gaining recognition, and making a saleable product or service visible to the startup’s target audience. How to Hire Developers –

Methods of hiring developers for a startup enterprise:

There are various methods of hiring developers for startups. Hiring can be outsourced, or you can also build an in-house team. Remote developers and freelance developers can also be hired. What works best for the startup’s budget and requirement must be considered before making any hiring decision-

  • Outsourcing Company: Well-qualified developers can be sourced from outsourced development companies. It is possible to find well-trained and experienced talent with a professional approach to work and a passion to deliver the best results. Hiring from outsourced companies benefits the startups in terms of cost-effectiveness and good ROI (return on investment).
  • Remote developers: Hiring a remote developer would entail him/ her working from a remote location. Remote working has become popular in today’s times, as freelance working has proven to be more effective and result-oriented. Remote workers do not feel the pressure and burnout of the office and tend to deliver better output. A dedicated software development team may feel the pressure and burnout and fail to deliver as well as a remote developer. However, tracking the work progress and getting work done timely can prove to be a challenge with remote developers.
  • Team of in-house developers: Hiring developers that will work full-time for your firm is another possibility. This would ensure round-the-clock management and streamline internal workflow systems. Full-time employees would be invested in their work because their pay is based on the quality of their labour.
  • Check References: It is always a great idea to connect with similar startup businesses or online communities before hiring developers. Understanding the way others have hired developers and how it has worked out for their business gives a good idea for future hiring and team management. Checking references is especially critical for hiring specialist developers, who work only on specific domains and also charge more for their expertise and experience.
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Benefits and Challenges of hiring developers on a remote level:

Outsourcing the hiring process for developer recruitment is often a smart move for startups. Below are some benefits of hiring developers on a remote level-

  • Tech Talent Availability: Outsourcing brings the benefit of choosing from a larger pool of talent. Tech talent from around the world becomes accessible at competitive rates. Startups can also hire on a project or assignment basis, which reduces the strain of training and development of a full-time employee. Startups are fraught with various business risks at inception. To hire dedicated developers through outsourcing is a smart decision in the case of startups.
  • Quicker Recruitment: Hiring developers on a remote basis is faster than hiring full-time developers. This is because hiring is purely on the basis of the skill set, experience, and knowledge base of the developer. Startups do not need to assess the soft skills of the person, or the long-term fit in the organisation, in the case of project-based remote hiring.
  • Flexibility: A pool of developers can be hired by a startup enterprise to look after the different domains (for example- app development, backend software development, website design, and development, etc) of a larger assignment. This brings flexibility in the work culture, and better outputs, as the developers are free to work creatively in their own domain expertise areas.
  • Budget Management: As developers are hired on the basis of their skill sets and experience for project-based contracts; hiring by outsourcing proves to be a cheaper alternative for startups. The HR costs of allowances, salaries, training, etc. need not be incurred on remotely hired developers. Only the cost of work delivered has to be paid. Startups can manage their already stringent budgets effectively by hiring developers remotely.
  • More experience and subject expertise: Hiring specialised developers increases the success rate of the projects for startups. Having a glitch-free run is essential for ensuring consumer attention, brand creation, and visibility in the market. Experienced specialty domain developers aid in the creation of better results for new businesses.

Given the various benefits of hiring developers on a remote basis or full time, startups also face some challenges in hiring this way-

  • Lack of local talent: Startups often face the short end of the stick while hiring developers from local sources. It is common to find that qualified and talented IT professionals are recruited by large business enterprises, leaving very few people to choose from for startups. It is cumbersome and expensive to hire from a smaller pool of candidates.
  • Competition with larger corporates: Even if a startup has hired smart and qualified developers, it is often a challenge to retain these employees in the long run. Larger corporations offer much better compensations, allowances, perks, etc, and can easily poach this bright talent from startup enterprises. When unable to retain developers, startups can face a severe crunch in meeting their project deadlines on time.
  • Financial Concerns: Hiring full-time developers is a serious financial commitment for startups. In addition to the salaries, other expenses like training and certification expenses, allowances, perquisites, legal leave payments, etc. Even when minimal support of developers is needed after the project has been launched, their full salaries will still need to be paid.
  • Hiring Issues: Startups in their inception stages do not have any brand image or corporate credibility. This does not draw smart talent towards them; which makes hiring a difficult task. Also, startups do not have a good set-up HR department, to handle their recruitments. Thus it becomes a tedious task for startup enterprises to hire qualified developers from the available talent pool.
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Factors to be considered while hiring developers for startups:

  • Check their portfolio: It is vital to check the past projects and successful assignments completed by developers. For this developers maintain a portfolio that proves their past track record and quality of work delivered. This also narrows down the search of startups in the case of specialised function recruitments.
  • Check listing sites: Startups can also scout for talent on professional websites like Linkedin and Clutch. Referrals from previous employers or clients can also be a reliable source to step upon for developer recruitments. 
  • Don’t forget about NDAs: Signing NDAs (non-disclosure agreements) with the developer engaged for any project or assignment is always a good idea. This ensures that the idea developed in the startup stays internal and never gets leaked to any competitor company or individual. Written agreements are crucial in the case of hiring developers.


Although it is a challenging task to hire dedicated developers who are qualified and experienced for startups; there are various ways through which hiring has been made simpler in today’s times. With online listing sites, professional networks, IT forums, and communities, it is now easier than ever to source talent from a worldwide pool. Startups need to ensure that they stay within their budget and find a way to overcome retention issues with new developer hires. Startups have proven to be a stimulating and fresh work environment for young talent across various disciplines of knowledge. Providing challenging assignments and training continuously are some ways by which new hires can be kept motivated and interested in the startup environment.


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