Thomas Thejlade

Thomas Thejlade

How to recruite remote developers

ArticlesPosted by Thomas Thejlade 2016-09-10 13:45

Today many countries are having troubles finding employees. If I use Denmark as an example. Here is a high demand for APP, Web and web shop developers. The problem is very often, that history have told us that remote developers are hard to communicate with and nearly impossible to control. It is like not transparent enough what they are doing. Not all have this experience, but if you are a small entity, it can be hard.

Unfortunately many companies, including my own, have had some not optimal experience leasing remote developers from China, India, South america and other places. Do not get me wrong, these people are highly competent and very good programmers. It is often the mangement of the project that, sometimes can create unfortunate situation.

When the geographical distance is an issue, and the cultural difference are vast, it can be very abstract to understand, the priorities and considerations made from both sides. Therefor, according to my experience, chose by location and culture.

Why is this? Well, when you start a development project, communication is the key. If you have too long distances and have to deal with time difference. I can assure you that having a meeting about complex paradigms and solutions at 10 PM is not an optimal situation. You are tired after a long day at work, and it is hard to concentrate. Meetings can take up to several hours and you are in bed after midnight.

I have been doing outsourcing for many years now. Travelling the world to find the optimal solution. My opinion is:

  1. Long distance; have a local coordinator, that is in charge of the legal entity far away.
  2. Chose short distances; short travel route. Example Denmark->Poland, UK->Poland.
  3. Find places where the cultures do not differ to much. Communication will be easier.
  4. Even if the prices per hour is a little bit higher with close location. When something goes wrong (at it often do when developing software) it is easier to visit and clear things up.
  5. Conf calls, in working hours. You are clear and fresh.

When I was looking for remote development, I have tried China, India even Brazil. They are good people and very skilled, but communication was not optimal.

Based on my experience I started my own recruitment and leasing company, for remote development 10 years ago, in Poland. I am a Danish citizen, but have moved to Poland, so we can service our target group in same language and same culture. Poland is well known for excellent programmers, good language skills. Actually Poland is on top 3 list of the countries with best game and technical developers.

I hope this small guide will help, it is based on 15 years experience, in the remote developer market. From both sides, both as a client and now as a vendor.

Feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

Kind regards and have a nice day.