With almost always having open job positions, we get a lot of emails and CVs from people for each of our offices. The quantity doesn’t outweigh the quality in Software Development, though. We are living in times and market where the employees choose the employers and not vice versa. Finding and getting the right candidates to join the team is a long and tough process. We wanted to know how we can further improve ourselves and be better employers for the developers. We conducted a short survey on what developers want from an employer. And ended up with five most popular answers.
We happen to be (not so modestly) covering all 5 criteria, that’s why the article.
1. Room to improve and progress
Most developers want challenging project. They want to test their knowledge and skills with interesting projects that will help them improve and advance their craft. This would hardly happen with a simple presentational page, that most of the freelance developers end up doing. We have complex systems in the house, that require creativity and knowledge.
We invest in trainings, because we know that this way we invest in the company. Remember the internet meme:
CFO asks CEO, “What happens if we invest in developing our people and then they leave us?”
CEO: “What happens if we don’t, and they stay?”
Freedom comes with Responsibility. Once you prove you’re eligible, you will be treated like a king in our company. Letting people use their imagination and creativity and not limiting them to work in the same, often obsolete pattern, adopting new technologies and methodologies gets you motivated and driven employees ready to take any project.
Apart from the freedom of thought, flexible working hours are also a huge advantage. You can keep both the early birds and night owls happy.
3. Focus on one project at a time.
It often happens in companies to have one developer on more than one project at a time. No matter how small the task is, switching between projects can get confusing and take a lot of precious time trying to get one’s focus back. We are working very hard on minimizing the “hijacking” of developers by the project managers, so everyone has a clear view on what he or she will be assigned on for a longer period of time.
4. Feedback on the work
Giving feedback is one of the most important things. It feels good to know that you did a good job on something or getting a critical opinion on your work because it gives you the room to fix your mistakes and improve for next time. Feedback with no evaluation criteria is useless though. Having a concrete behavioral and technical matrix helps a lot for the improvement of one’s weak points. We have an evaluation process where developers can get a clear view on their performance and choose to strengthen more their strong points or work on improving their weaknesses.
5. Fair and open communication
Keeping things fair and keeping an open communication is one of the keys of being a good employer. Letting the people know what’s going on in the company, rewarding them for their good performance or letting them know what they did wrong is the key for success of everyone.
These are the top five answers we got., that we feel are the most important, that we got from the developers. However there are also many other things that are not mandatory but will make someone happy. The things that might even look irrelevant to someone, may be really important to other people. Having a parking space in front of the office or pool table where you can just relax for a bit and “let off steam”, some consider a really important asset of a working environment.
Keep these in mind when thinking of ways to better your working place. We are already working hard on our improvement, hope this will help you improve yourself.