Are Startups Having a Difficult Time Recruiting Software Engineers Even in this Job Market?

I recently read an article on the Bloomberg Businessweek web site titled “Entrepreneurs: Struggling to Recruit Software Engineers”. The article’s subtitle is “Startups vie with bigger rivals as demand for programmers
returns”. According to the article “In many industries, high
unemployment means abundant available labor. That’s not the case for fledgling
tech companies making their crucial first hires.” They report that
finding software engineers is as hard as it was during the boom.” The
article quotes as saying tech job postings on their site are up 38%
this year and saying that tech postings on their site are up

So what is causing this sudden shortfall of valuable technical talent in startups? According to the article many software professionals who in the past may have considered employment with a startup are now moving towards the
stability of larger companies and now favor higher pay over equity.

While this article addresses the problem it does not offer any solutions. All of us involved in Software Recruiting realize that the market is heating up again but the professionals actually
producing software may not be feeling it. The past two years have created
an environment of insecurity in the tech world and many of the software people
I talk to while not happy in their current roles feel their jobs are stable and
do not want to risk leaving for a potentially less stable situation. This
causes a difficult situation for the risky world of startups. As pointed
out in the article software professionals that do choose to make a move are
choosing the higher salaries and stability of larger companies rather than the
great risk/great reward of a startup.

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Comment by pam claughton on November 6, 2010 at 6:26am
I'm in the Boston area and my experience has been different than Mike's. What I've seen all through the recession is that it has not affected top software engineering talent. I recently had an A player contemplating multiple offers and he shared that before he took his most recent role, he had 5 good offers to choose from. These are the people that every company jumps to bring on board in any market, there's just not enough of them available.
Comment by Paul Alfred on November 6, 2010 at 6:33pm
Hi Pam ... I was trying to tell Mike that this is what I have found as well. Perhaps his Startups operate in industries where the recession has had more of a negative impact with respect to attracting top talent....


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