Hello to everyone, who is interested in hiring the best developers! Finding a great programmer is a big challenge. One does not meet the qualifications, the other is delaying the deadline, the third simply does not respond to messages. Many commonplace things are missed by recruiters even in large companies. And if you’re interviewing without an expert in the right discipline, or if you have a small startup and are trying to hire one of the first suitable hires, things get twenty times more difficult. In this article which is called ‘How To Hire The Best CSS Developers’, I’ve highlighted a few principles to help you find the best talent in the IT labor market. It is worth noting right away that no one can give a definite answer to this question, not even Laszlo Bock (who is, by the way, the Google’s vice president of HR). Still, it’s worth trying to form starting points that will help you move in the right direction. Read and discover!
One of the secrets of successfully hiring CSS developers is that the company has an interesting product that they will develop. Such an IT product can be interesting in different ways:
- For users: the product creates value, generates benefits for people;
- for development: a product can be niche and highly specialized, and therefore interesting to an extremely limited group of people. For example, a site for dog breeders can hardly be called an interesting product for a wide audience. But if at the same time it contains a cool data processing algorithm inside, which allows, depending on the breed, age, health of the animal and location, to select and order food, vaccinations, and that’s all – it is quite possible to attract developers who like the idea to it.
If your product doesn’t meet both or even one of these points, there is only one tool left to attract worthy IT professionals — you have to offer conditions much better than those offered by other companies at the labor market. When a CSS developer selects one of the job offers, he pays attention not only on the product and it’s tasks, but also to the following things:
- Money, and this is not only a salary, but also all types of material motivation (regular bonuses, insurance, parking, food, fitness and things like that).
- Other working conditions (location, team, schedule, the ability to work from home, the ability to move to another country, the company’s brand, and so on).
To hire dedicated CSS developers, you need to be competitive in two of these three parameters, and not fall below the safety level. For example, you cannot pay a large salary, but you are ready to give a person the opportunity to participate in an option program: flexible schedule, interesting tasks, the ability to work remotely, some other intangible bonuses.
You can create a competitive hiring advantage to attract only the best CSS developers to your company. To do this, you need to analyze the incentive systems adopted by other companies in your market. A classic mistake is to take an entire segment (for example, Python, including data from all developers in the study) and display the average. You need proper data segmentation, in order to understand how to attract specialists valuable to your company, you need to know what companies like you offer. You need to know not only the level of salaries, but also what intangible benefits employees receive from competitors. And what level of tasks do they usually solve in similar positions? Sources of such information: informal communication with employees of these companies, reports at conferences, public pages, articles, and, of course, interviews. Having learned and analyzed what the IT market offers to the specialists, it is necessary to form a list of benefits that your company is ready to offer for developers, to bring out its competitive advantages, to combine the expectations of candidates and their capabilities. Most often, a startup or a small company will not be able to outplay the majors in this field. This is where one of the main advantages of small development companies plays into your hands is flexibility. When you do not have many employees on your staff, it is easier to understand the expectations of each developer and manage them. As it was already written above, IT professionals can also attract some bonuses, such as a wider range of tasks, flexibility in career advancement, speed of decision-making, the ability to contact and convey their thoughts to business leaders directly. Another important competitive advantage of small companies is the ability to build a friendlier hiring process. The situation when a candidate receives an offer at the end of the final interview is a big ambitious project. But this does not mean that every CSS developer should be hired. If a company has a working assessment system with clear criteria, and all participants in the process understand what a ‘suitable candidate for us’ is, everything works not only quickly, but also efficiently.
Let’s move on to looking at the steps in hiring a CSS developer
1. First you need to look at candidates with at least 2-3 years of experience (better, of course, 5). So that they can create a new product themselves, take responsibility, make architectural decisions. Ideally, the employee you call for the first interview has already worked in large firms, participated in large projects, and received mentoring. If you hire a freelancer, he should have several sites in his portfolio. By the way, freelancers are highly recommended, especially if you hire an employee to work remotely. If a person has worked for himself all his life, he certainly has a certain sense of responsibility.
2. When you consider a CV for a developer, you need to evaluate it. You can evaluate the quality of his work by the code, even without programming skills. How to do it? The first way is using special tools. These services (or utilities) detect errors, “junk” code, unnecessarily complex combinations, and other signs of poor quality developer work. To do this, you can use CodeSniffer, which finds errors in syntax or coding standards, it is suitable for CSS. The second way is to independently assess the quality of the code. It takes a little preparation and learning about programming styles, but it’s not as hard as it sounds. It’s easy to understand whether it will be convenient to work with this developer’s code, whether he places curly braces correctly, whether he frames binary operators with spaces, whether he adds comments describing information about his code. Even a small piece of code can distinguish junior from senior and middle CSS developer.
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There are a couple of signs that indicate that you have found a good candidate:
- Focus on security issues. An excellent developer not only solves the problem assigned to him, but, in parallel, protects the product from potential dangers. He needs to know about SQL injection, XSS attacks, session hijacking, CSRF and so on. Talk to him about these topics, and everything will become clear.
- Use of ready-made solutions. Again, there is nothing shameful in this, on the contrary: it saves time, and their high-quality adaptation to your project may be more successful than writing new code. If you are looking for a CSS developer for a startup team, this is all the more useful.
- Constant learning, because web development is constantly evolving. If a person reads specialized sites, visits IT forums, learns new frameworks and technologies at all – this is a big advantage for him.
To conclude the article ‘How To Hire The Best CSS Developers’, I want to give you a couple of tips for hiring a great specialist. Before the interview, provide the candidate with links to materials, projects and products worth exploring. This is done at Google and Facebook, and many other large companies when hiring specialists. This approach already at the initial stage makes it clear how interested the candidate is in his professional growth, as well as assess the level of his performing discipline. You can also involve your friends in searches (including social networks) and ask them for recommendations. Representatives of many companies say that it often brings more significant results than using specialized sites. Don’t just look for employees, but develop a model for hiring the ideal employee that you need specifically for your team. And one more thing: just hiring developers is not enough. You need cool technical management – then it will be clear how and by whom exactly to strengthen the team and processes. Thanks for reading!