To find talented developers who are a great fit for your company, you need to be thoughtful about your sourcing efforts. Referral networks and LinkedIn remain effective ways to connect with strong tech candidates, but top programmers already get a ton of outreach from sourcers and referral bonus-seeking friends.
You want to build meaningful relationships within the technical community instead of blasting out generic emails. And you want to see programmers’ actual projects and code so you can differentiate the good from great. Give GitHub a try. While not necessarily branded as a recruitment site, it can help you get more information about coders’ projects, interests, and collaborations. Here at Codility, we use GitHub (among other sites) to source and recruit developers. In fact, we’ve filled two technical positions using GitHub in the past year.
GitHub is a site that hosts a community of developers who can showcase the projects they’ve worked on and the code they’ve written. You can also see their contributions to public collaborations, like open-source projects. Make sure you take advantage of the site’s social aspect, so you can form positive relationships with potential candidates and transform GitHub into your new favorite recruitment site.
There’s a ton of information on an individual’s GitHub profile, but the most relevant is the repositories section. Here, you can see their forks (projects they’ve contributed code to) and sources (things they’ve built or are building.)
Here are specific things to look for when sourcing software developers on GitHub:
So, on your quest to find developers to reach out to, you’ve found some really talented, collaborative people you want to connect with. What now?
Do not copy/paste the same cold email you use in your LinkedIn Recruiter account.
Form a strategy instead. After all, the goal here isn’t to reach out to as many coders possible, as quickly as possible. It’s to build relationships with people who might potentially join your team. And that starts with a genuine, thoughtful first email.
Talk to your technical interviewers or hiring managers first. Provide them with the list of GitHub profiles of people you think are good fits, and then co-author cold emails together. And most importantly, have your hiring manager be the one to send the email because they have more technical credibility in the coding community.
When talking about opportunities at your company, include the following in your messages:
Using these tactics, the tech recruiting team here at Codility achieves a 30% response rate when reaching out to developers on GitHub.
Of course, if you’ve found a superstar that seems like a good fit for a role that’s particularly hard to fill (think Director of Mobile Engineering), it might be wise to not send an email like this at all. Instead of sending a sourcing email, even if it’s a highly personalized and well-thought-out sourcing email, start with expressing interest in projects they’ve contributed to or are currently working on. This will spark a more natural conversation, and if it makes sense, your hiring manager can also speak about the open role at your company later. Do this right and you may capture the attention of 10x developers.
You’ve done a good job so far sourcing and contacting skilled programmers on GitHub. Keep up the momentum by ensuring that:
Hiring teams need to be increasingly resourceful and strategic in how they look for tech talent. Use this guide to identify strong programmers on GitHub, study their online activity and then send a personalized email to kick things off. Combined with other sourcing methods, you now have a well-rounded game plan and a new go-to recruitment site to find and connect with your next stellar engineering hire.
This blog originally appeared on the Workable Blog.
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