A Non-Tech Founder Guide in Hiring Programmers for a Startup

As a business owner or manager of a new startup company, you will have to invest a lot of time focused on staffing the organization. In some cases, the decision-making process for hiring employees to fill certain positions will be easy. In other cases, you will likely run into challenges that you must overcome. Let’s assume for a moment that you have a non-tech background. If that’s the case, it won’t be easy for you to go through the hiring process in search of programmers. Still, you will need to staff your IT department, and hiring quality developers will be a big part of that responsibility.

If you want to make the right decisions and find the kind of programmers that will fit neatly into your organization, you could certainly benefit from some advice on how to go about doing that. A nice roadmap could help you focus on programmers who really know what they are doing. To assist you with this process, here is a four-step guide to hiring programmers when you have a Non-Tech background.

Step 1: Isolate Exactly What You Need

The search for a programmer starts with you defining exactly why you need a programmer. Part of defining what the position will be required to do is deciding what the company’s goals will be.

You can start by creating a job description for the position or positions you are looking to fill. In the job description, you should list out all of the tasks and responsibilities you want the employee to cover. Be very specific because it will play a role in creating the qualifications you will be looking for from prospective employees.

For instance, will you expect your programmer to develop websites and mobile apps? Do you expect them to help you select the software development tools you will want them to use? Will they be involved with the management of other programmers? All of these types of responsibilities should be included in your job description.

Step 2: Define the Qualifications You Will Require

Once you have defined what you need, you can then start listing out the qualifications you would like candidates to bring to the table. If you are very specific about what you are looking for, you will lessen the likelihood of wasting time on candidates that won’t fit the position.

By the way, the definition of a programmer is a rather broad term. You would need to educate yourself about the different types of programmers you might encounter. That list might include:

  • Web design architect: Platform builder
  • Frontend developer: works with end-users on aesthetics
  • Backend developer: handles detailed programming
  • Full-Stack Developer: ability to handle both frontend and backend tasks
  • Mobile Developer: specializes in the development of mobile apps

As for qualifications, here is a list of qualifications you might like to see from a prospective programmer:

  • Educational background that includes a college degree in Information Technology
  • A certain number of years of work experience in certain areas
  • Experience working with certain software development tools
  • A background in web design and mobile app development if that falls in line with job responsibilities
  • The ability to work independently since you have limited knowledge about programming

Step 3: Start the Search Using Online and Offline Resources

After determining what kind of qualification you want candidates to bring to the table, you can start the search process. To aid you in this process, you can access both online and offline resources. People who work as programmers much prefer dealing with prospective employers through digital resources. Some of the online resources that would be worthy of your consideration would be:

  • Social media outlets and posts
  • Chat communities for programmers
  • Online message boards
  • Job portals
  • Online college message boards

If you want to go old school, there are a number of ways you can find prospects offline. That list would include:

  • Programming seminars/conferences
  • Word of mouth from business partners and associates
  • Hackathons: groups of programmers that practice hacking skills
  • Newspaper advertising
  • Hiring a placement agency

Interview Candidates

Once the talent starts walking through the door, the ball will be in your court. As part of the interview process, you will want to focus on each candidate’s work background, personality, demeanor, and education. Make sure to ask very specific questions to each candidate.

After you are done asking questions, give the candidates an opportunity to ask you any questions. You would be surprised how much you can learn about prospective employees from the questions they will ask in an interview.

Hiring employees as a manager or business owner for a new company can be exciting and daunting at the same time. Most times, it will be a breeze hiring people and other times, you will run into obstacles and challenges. Things may become increasingly difficult if you are hiring for a position that is in a field you have limited knowledge of such as programming. If that’s the case for you, following the tips in this guide will help you hire the right programmers for your company.

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