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What skills help make an ideal software developer candidate?

You might think recruiters should look for a long list of technical skills to define their ideal software developer candidate. However, while these are important, picking the right person for the role involves a lot more than just what programming languages they know. You need them to fit in with your workplace.

On average it can take 120 candidates to make a single software engineering hire, according to Lever’s 2017 report, ‘Inside the Recruiting Funnel’.1 Speed up your search for your ideal candidate by looking to see if they have these skills.

Attention to detail

In a software developer’s role, caring about detail is vital. It allows the candidate to notice if something isn’t running correctly, or spot errors in code long before they can cause issues. Everything from their interview attire to how well-presented their application is will help you tell whether details matter to them.

Deadline respect

There are two sides to this aspect. In the digital age it’s easy to expect everything immediately. However, if you have no experience with software development this may not translate well to what’s actually feasible for your candidate.

On the other side, it’s important that your software developer doesn’t cringe away from the idea of deadlines. The role can involve a high level of time pressure. Will your candidate perform well in those scenarios? Talk to them about how long projects have taken them in the past, and how often they’ve been able to achieve them within reasonable deadlines.


Don’t mistake this as someone who isn’t passionate about the role, or driven to achieve. This is a different type of laziness.

Sometimes the status quo works, but isn’t the most efficient use of time or energy. The ideal software developer is lazy in that they will challenge processes they could make simpler and easier. Instead of accepting them as they are, they’ll actively look for ways of achieving the same results using less effort, thereby driving efficiency.


In the digital world nothing is the same day-to-day. A software developer who’s resistant to change is going to hold your business back. However, one that keeps up with relevant developments and is willing to take on a variety of projects demonstrates that they’ll adapt and grow to match your business’s needs.


Linked in with adaptability is the need for curiosity. An interest in learning and trying new things is vital for forward movement. Has your candidate shown curiosity in the past? If they have a habit of suggesting new projects or advancing their skills in their own time, this is a positive sign.

Communication skills

Translating technical terms into understandable ideas isn’t easy. However, even if your company is highly tech savvy, it’s essential that any software developer you hire is an effective communicator. This is important for:

  • Conveying difficult ideas.
  • Translating concepts directly into software.
  • Explaining why something won’t work, or what types of challenges might arise.

Make sure you get the perfect developer for your needs. Look beyond just the technical skills and find the ideal match, with Finite920 today.



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