Hiring & keeping the right software developers for your organisation

October 26th, 2021

Software development is one of the most most sought after skills in Kenya today. Therefore, if you want to get and keep a good one, you have to do something to make your company stand out. Here are some of the things to consider while hiring devs in Kenya today:

  1. Make your company stand out
    A basic search on google should reveal a lot about your organisation – therefore the digital side of your company should be top notch. Make sure your online presence is looking great and make sure it has all the necessary pages, blogs and social media up to date. Companies that are keen on supporting devs either through sponsoring IT events, companies that are actively fundraising and companies whose product and services stand out attract a lot of software developers.
  2. Spotlight the company culture
    Most devs are connected to each other via whatsapp groups, colleges, universities and meetup groups. – this means they often discuss how the tech teams operate within different organisations. For you to attract the best devs your organisation needs to uphold the right culture. An organisations’ ability to achieve its goals and productivity levels, depends on the company’s culture. Tech teams in a healthy culture are realistic about what they can achieve and know exactly what their role involves.
  3. Professional job description
    A professional software engineering job description not only describes the devs responsibilities, but also sets the foundation for recruiting, developing and retaining talent. Devs can quickly spot a “copy pasted” job description or one that simply “doesn’t add up” – could be requirement with mixed roles, more roles than required for a particular job description or more years of experience than the age of a certain technology/framework. Its important for organisations to seek the services of a professional recruiter for such.
  4. Good managers/ leads
    Devs really care who is above them – they either cause the team to be productive or not. Devs excel where tech leads have good skills in delivery and execution. A good manger or tech lead should have the right combination of ‘Architect’ and ‘Leadership’ skills. They should also be good in bringing the team together and understand how to create the context in which these devs can succeed.
  5. Appreciation
    Devs play an important part in organisations – however, most of their roles operate in the backend an therefore they are not easily recognised for the hard work they do. Devs are typically proud of their intelligence and technical aptitude. Their opinions and insights are important to the organization. Devs thrive where there efforts are recognised within the team and where they are compensated accordingly either by gifts, monetary. It is important to establish a culture in which devs regularly thank each other and express gratitude to their teammates.
  6. Work that makes a difference
    Devs are highly motivated by seeing their work make a difference in the organisation and in the world at large. The positive impacts they are making for their colleagues, the company, the bottom line and the community at large have often been the biggest drivers for those I consider high quality. A dev will thrive when an organisation clearly shows that the product/service they are working is something enjoyable and that it makes a difference in society. Devs want to do things that matter, tackling challenges and that are personally interesting.
  7. Empowerment
    Junior devs are often looking for learning opportunities to sharpen their skills in the real world. On the other hand senior developers are often looking to make a difference. An org should focus on hiring amazing talent and use that to build a learning culture. Developers like to work in an environment where there are other people to learn from so that they can help each other continuously learn and grow. Devs should also be empowered to make decisions about their work such as coding standards, processes, tools, and design decisions.
  8. Opportunities for growth
    Managers and tech leads should understand what the devs working with them want for their future. Most of the times its mostly a technical or a management path. Providing opportunities for devs to excel and become technical leaders or managers within the organization will go a long way toward motivating your software engineers to continue producing quality work and maintaining their keeping them in the organisation.
  9. Great working space & flexibility
    Apart from a great working space, devs value a great level of autonomy, impact and influence. Since the tech world changes constantly, devs thrive when organisations offer to get the best gadgets for them to work with and flashy tools to help them achieve their goals. It also important to recognise that most devs don’t follow the normal 8-5 work shift that the organisation aligns to – so the more flexible they can be, the more likely they’ll be to have loyal.
  10. Competitive salary
    Most devs tie salaries to level of seniority and general work culture. Senior devs are most likely to turn down a job if doesn’t match their criteria despite it being a better paying job. On the flip coin, when the salary range isn’t at per with general standards in the tech industry, it most likely that your organisation will have a lot of dev churn. It is therefore important put your benefits at the center-stage to attract developers – mostly targeted toward things devs want.