Its common nowadays to hire remote developers, as the shortage of software developers has become an ongoing problem for most US startups and the leading problem for Australian startups. Even the corporate sector struggles, with almost a quarter of global executives reporting they can’t find the talent they need for key tech projects.

Remote talent has simply become a necessity, particularly for startups. Unfortunately, hiring remote developers in another country is not always easy. How can companies effectively hire remote developers? We’ve got tips across each stage of the recruitment process.

Set the Right Foundation for Remote Hires

Before you even list a position for a remote developer, there are are several simple longer-term approaches that will really improve your search:

  • Start early. Prospecting for potential employees well ahead of time can really improve your chances of finding a great fit.
  • Use your existing network: Explore your network and their connections for potential referrals, and consider building a network in your target country if you haven’t already. You might consider connecting with universities or coworking spaces in your target city, just to get started. If you already have offshore employees, consider an employee referral program.
  • Monitor the right places: Keep an eye on the online places that potential employees will engage (for example, Github, Stack Overflow or reddit, but you’ll need a presence yourself).
  • Build an employment brand: You should build an employment brand before you formally commence your search. New companies can suffer from a perceived lack of credibility, especially in Asian cultures. Tangible proof of your company or project can help, even if it’s a simple website.

These strategies will potentially add far more value than tweaking your ad copy or fine-tuning your choice of hiring channel. Small early actions can really improve your odds of finding that dream team member.

Get the Right Developers to Apply for Remote Positions

Once you’re ready to begin hiring a remote developer, several short-term tactics can improve your applicant pool:

  • Write great job advertisements: Your ad needs to be succinct and compelling. Ask yourself: what is the core of the role? What are the essential requirements? Why should the candidate work with you? Strong answers to these questions will assist you to gather a decent pool of applicants, whichever hiring channel you use. Note that your job advertisement should not be the same as your longer job description.
  • Look at the local competition to make sure your offer is competitive: What titles do they use to describe their roles? How long are the job advertisements? What employee benefits are they offering? Answers to these questions should shape your own offer.
  • Make smart choices where you advertise:  Really think about where you advertise your jobs. There will be many options: is it better to advertise on a tech-specific platform, or a more general one? Are there local partners who will help to spread word of your opportunity, like platform-specific Facebook groups? Are there specific universities, coding schools or coworking spaces that have built a relevant physical community?

Select the Right Remote Developers in Vietnam

Whichever selection approach you use, make sure you have multiple people involved in the process. Each individual will have a particular recruitment style and specific biases they bring to a hiring process. It’s easier to identify potential problems amongst your candidates by working together.

There are several important practices that will improve your selection process as you attempt to hire remote developers:

  1. Don’t rely purely on CVs. Structured interviews significantly improve hiring effectiveness.
  2. Test technical ability. Some companies prefer code submission, others administer technical tests, and some prefer standardized tests like HackerRank to improve the efficiency of testing.
  3. Strongly consider experiential interviews. Get the person to solve a problem you are actually working on.
  4. Involve your current team members. Your new hire will need to fit into your team. Consider getting shortlisted applicants to meet your current team members, particularly your key team members.
  5. Don’t just hire the smartest individuals. Good teams need more than smarts, as shown in recent research.

Throughout the interview process, you’ll need to manage expectations. As a startup, you’ll no doubt need to talk about the deadlines, the shifting nature of your project and the work hours that will be require.

Onboard and Retain Your Team of Remote Developers

Once you’ve hired a remote developer, it’s key that you keep them!  There are various approaches that will help:

  • Engage with your new team members: Offshore staff will need to feel part of the team. A senior member of your team needs to welcome and onboard them, preferably in person. Spending time together seriously reduces turnover and can increase the speed at which the new staff fits into your team.
  • Get to work quickly. New staff need to start meaningful work quickly. If your team has barriers (like poor management or work allocation), you are running an increased risk of losing that staff member.
  • Ensure administration is on track: Don’t forget the basics of the employment relationship. Staff should be paid promptly and the office space should be comfortable.

Improve Your Efforts to Hire Remote Developers

With a little help, most startups can make serious improvements to their hiring process for remote developers. Get in touch today if you’d like to discuss a new remote team of your own. You might also be interested in our tips for making offshore operations a success.