How to find IT specialists when the market is overheated?

The fact that the IT market is the candidate's market is known, perhaps, to almost everyone who works in the tech field.

However, under current conditions, this specificity has become a real challenge during the hiring process, while each filled vacancy has turned into a momentous event that the entire HR department commemorates :)

What's the specificity of the current situation in the IT market?

First of all, it's the stable growth of specialists' salary expectations. Jokes about the growth of a candidate's salary during the interview process no longer sound crazy, and the remuneration in foreign currency has ceased to be a unique bonus from the employer.
Secondly, it's the growing number of accepted counteroffers from current employers. If earlier, every fourth candidate accepted the counteroffer, today this happens in every second case.
One gets the feeling that the market has "run mad" and even junior-level specialists with less than a year's experience set salary expectations at the level of a Middle+ level developer, and, most surprisingly, the market satisfies their demands.

How to hire IT specialists in such tough, truly hellish conditions? Find out some of our short but effective tips in our new article.

1. Conduct the market research

Besides the fact that candidates have the upper hand in the market, there is another industry specificity - its instability. The conditions that were relevant to the market a month ago are, with a high degree of probability, no longer relevant today.
Therefore, it's important to keep track of what is happening on the market, study the vacancies of competitors, read recent research, and keep in touch with industry representatives.
Today, remote work isn't a trend anymore, but a must-have condition, without which it will be very difficult to find a worthy candidate.
The pandemic is a good case in point. Before the lockdown, remote work was an attractive condition for the sake of which many candidates were ready to lower their salary expectations. Today, remote work isn't a trend anymore, but a must-have condition, without which it will be very difficult to find a worthy candidate.

This also applies to the salary that you are ready to offer the candidate. Are you sure that it matches the market realities? If you have figures for March 2021, expunge them from your documents (notebook, memory, CRM system) and re-examine them as most likely they are outdated.
For example, in the same March 2021, the average salary of a Senior Go developer varied in the range of $ 4000-5000. Today the salary expectations of such specialists are $ 6,000-7,000.

2. Decide on the pros and cons of your job opening

Relevant condidtions

Another important point is to offer conditions that are relevant to your requirements. To what extent do your conditions correspond to the market? What are the weaknesses of your position and what are the advantages?
If you see significant disadvantages of a job opening, for example, a project that doesn't stand out from others or the absence of must-have working conditions, think about how you can close these gaps. A popular solution in this case is offering a candidate a salary higher than the market average.
We won't say anything about cookies, voluntary medical insurance, training courses and other must-have conditions:) Try to see things in a more realistic light, understand strengths and weaknesses of your vacancy and, on this basis, build a candidate's profile.

3. Define a candidate's profile

Sometimes a company is looking for an experienced Senior-level developer to join its team, although in fact, a Mid-level specialist may cope with the tasks just as well.

In this case, why waste your nerves, efforts and money on a tough search for a Senior developer, if you can solve business objectives by hiring a less qualified, but still worthy Mid-level specialist?
We often tell our clients: a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush. Most likely, you don't need it, especially if your position doesn't have serious competitive advantages.

4. Optimize your recruitment stages

First of all, this concerns the number of interviews in your recruitment stages. We've recently conducted an IT market research and determined: the optimal number of recruiting stages is 2. This is the initial interview with a recruiter and a technical interview with the employer.
We also suggest not including test assignments in your stages, as always :)
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    Firstly, test assignment isn't the only method to check a specialist's skills.
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    Secondly, it often scares candidates off, so they are more likely to consider another, less time-consuming opening.
These days it's important to hire quickly, and the number of recruitment stages determines how quickly you can make an offer. Speed is perhaps one of the few cards up in your sleeve and it's important to make smart use of it.

5. Build out your recruiting stack

IT recruiting is as dynamic as the IT industry. New changes and services for tech recruiting appear on a regular basis. In addition, their effectiveness also changes.


For example, our research has shown that email is no longer the most effective way to reach a candidate. Now Telegram ranks first-line.

6. Think over a candidate motivation strategy

Every candidate is unique. If it is important for one to work in a cool team of professionals, then for another it is more important to influence product architecture, make decisions, and delve into business tasks.

You can understand this during the process of the initial communication, as well as find this information in the specialist's portfolio (if you are the lucky one to find relevant information about the candidate).

7. Act quickly

Let's speak without disguise: there is no time for deciding whether the found candidate is the very same or not. If you see that a specialist fits the key requirements, make an offer.
Most likely, your candidate already has 5-7 offers, and he or she is already thinking about which offer to accept.


It is important to "play with forecasts" and not wait until a specialist accepts an offer from another company.

8. Compete

If this is a really worthy candidate, perhaps you should compete with the current employer.
The moment when the candidate finally accepts your offer is, of course, exciting and pleasant, but today, alas, it doesn't mean that you should fill the vacancy. There is a high risk that the current employer won't let the specialist leave the company without striking a blow and offer them more attractive working conditions.

Our tip: compete. This isn't always pleasant, and often the candidate only benefits from the fact that several companies are struggling for them at once, but if this is a really worthy candidate, perhaps you should compete with the current employer. We understand that a lot depends on your capabilities, but if you can, then in such stories it's time to demonstrate your intentions.

9. Contact recruitment agencies

In current realities, stop at nothing to achieve your goals: contact IT recruitment companies. When choosing an agency, pay attention to whether it suits you in terms of comfort and views.
For example, at Lucky Hunter, we work only with like-minded clients since we adhere to the principle of partnership in our work.
It presupposes an open dialogue, the ability to listen to each other, mutual support, constant feedback and the pursuit of a common goal - the successful filling of a vacancy.

Partnership and long-term cooperation, to which we strive in working with every client, are possible only with open, honest communication, comfortable work, and the ability to be on the same page. This approach guarantees 100% success even in complex cases.

Polina Barabanova
Content Manager at Lucky Hunter
Specializes in tech staff recruitment, startups, tech research, career, HR, and news topics. With her expertise, she provides valuable insights and practical advice to navigate the ever-evolving tech industry.

If you are looking for an IT specialist to join your team, we'll be glad to get acquainted with you and believe that we'll build long-term partnerships=)

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