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4 tips for securing top technical talent at scale

In the current market, recruiting top technical talent is not easy. Competition is fierce, and conditions are constantly changing. In order to attract the talent your company needs, it’s critical to develop hiring practices that are both scalable and effective.

To discuss best practices and insights for transforming your recruiting process, we invited Tony Castellanos (Head of Talent at Nextdoor) and Sarah Newman (Head of Talent at Whisper) to join CodeSignal’s Co-Founder and CEO, Tigran Sloyan, for a one-hour webinar. Tony and Sarah shared what they’ve learned about scaling technical teams from working at high-growth companies, including Facebook and Square.

Here are the top takeaways from that conversation, which you can watch in full here.

1. Partner with engineering ‍

As your company grows, you’ll find that your recruiting team and the number of candidates to manage grow, as well. Spreadsheets and Slack messaging may work to start, but at some point they’ll become a bottleneck. Sarah experienced this firsthand at Facebook, noting “infrastructure was really important to allow them to scale the way they needed.”

There are many recruiting tools that exist to help you (like CodeSignal ) but you should also partner with your engineering teams. “Facebook built infrastructure so that we could scale much more quickly,” said Sarah. “Engineers are really passionate about recruiting.”

Encourage your technical teams to take an active role in attracting candidates and strengthening your hiring brand. Tony recommended “team and hiring manager-driven bridge building, whether that’s one-to-one or one-to-many in the different communities they participate in.”

2. Track metrics

Measuring your team’s performance allows you to diagnose and resolve issues. To judge success, Sarah said that for each team member, she only sets one metric around the end goal: “For a sourcer, that would be this many offers. For a recruiter, it’s this many closes.” Tony agreed, saying “Hire great people, then point them at the real problem. The true north is the goal you want them to achieve.”

If a team member misses their goal, that’s when Sarah looks at the other metrics: “Once someone can’t do it, we have to dig into why it’s not working.” For instance, a recruiter may not be getting the support they need from sourcing, or may have trouble closing the candidates they have. You should use metrics to understand the underlying issue and find a solution.

Tony also recommended paying attention to guardrail metrics—not measuring just what you’re trying to achieve, but also if you’re doing it effectively. For sourcing, he said “offers extended is what matters, but it needs to be paired with a check like how many acceptances come from those extends.”

3. Scale CEO & CTO interviews

As your company’s hiring needs grow, so will the number of great candidates in your pipeline. If every candidate has to interview with the CEO or CTO, their busy calendars will eventually become a bottleneck. However, these interviews are important for making sure a candidate is a great fit for the team.

To solve the problem, Sarah and Tony both suggested training other company leaders to run these interviews. It’s critical to involve the CEO and CTO closely in selecting and training these interviewers. “They want to be able to trust that someone is a high-functioning proxy,” explained Tony, “and that can only happen if they’re the one leading that training.”

4. Make it personal

As you aim for scale and efficiency, make sure not to lose sight of the importance of connecting with candidates. Maintaining that connection will make your process more effective at attracting candidates. As an example: when sourcing candidates, it may be easier to send out a generic email, but it’s worth taking the time to make it personal. “It takes a minute to do it, and the yield is much higher,” said Sarah.

This also applies to your recruiting process as a whole. While you need some structure for everyone to follow, you want to balance that against being too prescriptive. Tony recommended “[making] the process of relationship building unique in a way that authentically portrays what it’s like to work there.” 

To help them build hiring processes without losing their personal touch, companies like Greenhouse and Robinhood use CodeSignal to evaluate candidates in their on-site interviews. CodeSignal Interview provides a state-of-the-art IDE while allowing real-time video collaboration between candidates and interviewers to help build connections. 

Sign up for a free demo today and see how CodeSignal can help you land top technical talent.