Breaking The Code: How to Hire and Retain Software Engineers

Time to Read: 4.9 minutes

Updated: May 8, 2023

For quite some time, the need for software engineers has been growing. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for software developers is expected to grow 22% from 2019 to 2029. In such a highly competitive environment, companies must know how to hire and retain software engineers.

Companies like Netflix, Facebook, Amazon, and Google are making the workplace heaven for their employees. They’re offering incentives like flexible working hours, remote working opportunities, and unlimited holidays. For a small company, that’s practically impossible. However, there are multiple ways to offer your developer something extra. In this article, we will discuss various ways to hire and retain software engineers in 2021.

Company Culture

When it comes to choosing a company, software engineers don’t just want to get paid. They want to work towards making the world a better place and becoming part of something big. Developers pick companies that are driven over the ones offering higher pay, but that all isn’t possible without a good company culture and vision. Word of mouth whether direct or online is among the best ways to attract software engineers. They choose a company because they’ve heard good things about it. It’s all about the right company culture, employer branding, and your online reputation.

According to the Stack Overflow 2020 developer survey, company culture is the second most important job factor. Interestingly enough, among women respondents selected company culture as the most important factor. Either way, one thing we can say for sure is that good company culture is important to hire and retain software engineers.

Your company culture is what attracts top talent. When the employees are happy, they work more effectively resulting in better performance. According to a study into happiness and productivity by Oxford University, workers are 13% more productive when they’re happy. Incentives like free food and flexibility are a small price to pay for better results.

Offer Growth Opportunities

The tech world is always changing and software engineers must adapt to that. If the company provides professional growth opportunities like courses, workshops, boot camps, and certifications, developers are more likely to choose it and stay there.

In 2020, Hacker Rank surveyed 116,648 developers from 162 companies. According to the report, a whopping 59% of developers ranked learning new tech skills as the most important form of professional growth.

Hacker Rank Survey

Source: HackerRank developer skills report, 2020

When on the one hand, earning more money is important for your developer, so is the opportunity to grow. Make sure that you don’t ignore one while putting all your focus on the other.


In the wake of the pandemic, the WFH concept became popular. When people started working from home, software engineers were among the very few who didn’t face many issues. In the tech world, tech is your world. You control everything from your computer or mobile and it doesn’t matter where you work from. And that’s the kind of flexibility software engineers need.

Big companies like Google and Netflix are offering an environment that makes life easier for their employees. For example, being part of the Google team comes with awesome perks like free food, health, haircut, and dry cleaning. And that’s not all, workers can even enjoy napping pods, gyms, and swimming to get relaxed. The point is to not push your developer against the wall, but let them be creative and navigate the waters peacefully.

Keep Up with Latest Technology

There’s nothing developers love more than the new toys. They adore the latest gadgets and are always anxious to get their hands on them. If you want to encourage top-notch software engineers to join your team, let them know that you love technology as much as they do and have all the new toys. Being stuck at an office with antiqued technology is the worst nightmare of any tech enthusiast.

Make your office a dreamland for your employees. Give them fast computers, standing desks, great software, and curved screens. Not only is the latest technology fun and interesting, but it also means that your developers can brag about them to their colleagues. So, that way, you can not only retain software engineers but also attract and hire new talent. When you’re offering a competitive salary, the new toys are what keeps the developers around!

How to Hire Top Software Engineers?

Hiring top software engineers is about utilizing many different resources. You can put up posts on various job boards or social media platforms, and use resume screening. LinkedIn is an excellent platform to find both junior and senior developers. Capitalize on your network by locating software engineers and pop the questions. If they’re up for a challenge, then test their skills. Otherwise, it’s always worth asking them for a referral. The best way to hire crème de la crème is through employee referrals. Although, that’s hardly possible without a good company culture. Your employees will refer to their friends only if they like the company, or else, they’ll keep them far away.

To make referrals simpler, you can make use of an employee referral app. This makes life easier for everyone. Employees can easily refer candidates who can accept referrals from any device and apply directly to your applicant tracking system. Your internal team can see who has been referred, hired, and earned bonuses. For bigger companies, the hiring process gets too long and complicated. In that case, outsourcing your hiring to a recruitment agency can help.

Pierpoint is an RPO solutions provider that has been recruiting a workforce for top Silicon Valley companies. Our clients include leading companies like Sophos, Twilio, Intuit, Juniper Networks, and we fill about 5,000 technology-related roles, annually. If you want to attract, hire, and retain software engineers, then let’s get in touch!

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Noor-ul-Anam Ruqayya

Noor-ul-Anam Ruqayya is a software engineer that also has a passion for writing well-researched, SEO-optimized, and engaging content for a wide range of industries. She has been writing long-form content for the talent acquisition industry since 2020 and has created multiple top-ranking articles.

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