July 31, 2022

Hacking (Engineering) Hiring

Since offering my free advice session, engineering hiring has been the No. 1 topic people ask about. It inspired this article.

One question I always ask myself when hiring is what can we do beyond covering common hygiene factors, knowing that it only keeps you afloat but not winning the talent war.

These are actionable items for tech or tech-enabled startups and scale-ups going through rapid growth, resulting in the (urgent) need to make (large number of) engineering hires to support product development. They are also battle-tested.

Therefore it is an action-oriented piece for “hows”. For the (explained) “whys” and (detailed) “whats”, another article titled “Hiring as a Product” is due soon.

Unsplash | Patrick Tomasso

Short-term remedies

Review pipeline and pinpoint where the bottlenecks are

Review difficult-to-hire roles and find alternatives

Red herring: compensation

False hope: recruitment agency


Long-term recommendations

Investing in employer branding

Hiring as a product

Putting diversity at the centre of the hiring process

Advocating a strong, positive organisational culture

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