HOW TO HIRE GREAT DEVS in 15-20 days to build your SAAS MVP?🧵

"What I learned from >50 technical interviews for >5 roles at an EU-IN-based AI startup?"

Atm, I use this to hire devs for my software developer agency.

RT & follow if you want more. I spent a Saturday on this.
"Should you be the one hiring developers?"

Don’t try to hire developers if you are completely non-technical yourself.

They will take all your money, build a shitty product & leave.

Here’s your job profile to hire devs & function as a CTO 👇🏽
• Generalist full-stack web developer who’s built & deployed web apps before (opt. 1-2 yrs)

• Basic understanding of 1 backend web framework (Express, Django etc) & 1 frontend framework (React, Angular)

• Knowledge of AWS, Linux, Git, UI/UX & System design
• Be an extrovert who likes hiring, working w/ people, learning & teaching

You need a breadth of knowledge to manage devs not depth necessarily

The amount of experience your developers have should be inversely proportional to your own experience in tech
If you are completely non-technical do this -

• Spend 2-3 months learn tech-shit (from YouTube 3 hours/day) then come back

• OR find a CTO, who fits the profile, equity split. Let him hire & manage.

• OR hire a Software Development Agency to take care of everything
"Step 1 - Finalizing the Tech Stack"

Let’s finalize a tech stack before we decide to hire developers. 👇🏽
Go with the most popular tech stack to make hiring easy.

• Frontend - ReactJS with TailWindCSS & Redux

• Backend - NodeJS Express, Sequelize, or Mongoose

• Database - PostGres - (rare cases MongoDB)

• DevOps (deployment) - AWS EC2 (~50$/month) w/ Docker
The cumulative skill set of the team needs to match this tech stack.

Everyone does not need to know everything but, together you should know it all.
Your "ideal developer" looks like this -

• “young & full of potential” - still in/or straight out of college or with 1-2 years of experience - no seniors for nw

• “loves coding” - has a great Github profile, at least 3 projects with well-written readmes
• “is friendly” - participates in hackathons, does group projects, has recommendations on LinkedIn, no lone wolfs

• *job specific tech-stuff*

• “has demonstrated ability to learn” - knows >3 spoken languages, can play an instrument, can juggle ffs, anything
• “is likeable” - uses emojis, says please, thanks, shows concern for you, asks questions, humble, honest & nice don’t hire sociopaths
"Hire future-FANG Devs, before FANG finds them."
"Creating Job Roles"

Saas-es have 2 major components the frontend & the backend.

You will create 2 job posts on LinkedIn for this.
• Frontend Developer with ReactJS
• Backend Developer with NodeJS Express
There’s another 3rd hidden role your/CTO’s role, and that is of a generalist

The one who fills any gaps in knowledge.

Remember, there will be gaps in knowledge. Devs might not know Heroku, AWS, TypeScript etc.
You will need to distribute the work, plan the milestones, take infrastructural decisions -
should you use a CDN? do you need a bigger server? why does the UI not look good? do you need a niche-specialist to build a single UI element, etc.
Here’s a sample job desc.

The tech stuff will change for you.

Yes, show the exact salary on the post. No ranges. Don’t be an arse.
"Fixing Salaries for Indian Devs"

TLDR; Pay Indian 1-2 year exp devs 900$/month

Long - Hire & treat as employees, not ‘freelancers’!
Don’t hire hourly. Instead hire devs full-time for a 2-3 month contract, with a probability for an extension.

This way you don’t have to compete with freelance developer hourly rates.

You just have to match & exceed full-time developer salaries which are much less (by ~2x)
The median developer salary in India is ~$700/month converted to an hourly rate that is $6.75/hour -

Upwork rates for similar freelance developers are 15$/hour to 25$/hour.

Remember just because they are on Upwork & charge a higher hourly rate does not mean they are better
If you are hiring an Indian Dev. with the above job desc. pay him $900/month.
During the interview share your complete vision with the candidate -

“I am trying to start a company.

We will build the MVP first. I will get us the users.

We will get revenue & keep iterating on the project."
"I want your help to do that.

It will crash & burn if we don’t work together.

Then, no one will have jobs.”
This will excite some and scare away others. That’s a good thing.

Software is never DONE. It’s like a garden.

You will need to change the color of a button, fix a small bug, the MVP will never be complete -

Devs you hire now will help you through it.
"Step 2 - Creating Job Posts on LinkedIn"

This is the easiest part of the process. 👇🏽
Create a LinkedIn Company Page, fill in the details.

1. Add the job post under “Post a Job”
2. Set is as Contract/Part-time, fully remote
3. Set location to India
4. Promote it.

It will cost you like $5 and you will get 50 candidates in 3 days
"Step 3 - Evaluating Applicants"

SOP to hire a Dev -

1. Create a job post
2. Shortlist a few resumes
3. Send them 2-3 hour long Technical Assignment
4. Interview
5. Hire
• Evaluating candidate resumes is a separate thread for later. But look for someone who matches the “ideal developer” profile above.

Now, coming to the assignment. For this part, you will NEED to know your tech shit.
"Step 4 - Creating the Technical Assignment"

The assignment should imitate a real-life scenario of what the daily dev work might look like.

Typically a microcosm of the actual project would work too.
Don’t try to give devs a competitive coding algorithm style assignment they will look up the answers on Google and cheat #100DaysOfCode
Here’s a sample assignment with a Loom to explain what needs to be done.

• Sample NodeJS Express Assignment -…

• Sample Loom -…

Feel free to use my assignment if you want to. Re-record the Loom though, lol.
Only about 1/4 applicants will actually finish this assignment so you will never have to review more than say 3-4 of these.

Reviewing one takes ~25 mins.
Remember the assignment is the most imp. part of hiring. If you mess this up, you will end up with a dud.

Rate devs assignment scores, likeability & preferences on a 1 to 5 scale.

• Record in Google Sheets -…

Next move to the actual interview

After this, you are mostly done.

Sign contracts if you want. Confirm their time & date availability once again.

The entire process should not take longer than 25 days to complete.
GUYS! This was very strongly inspired by @SaaSCapo's massive threads on tech sales!

He's a G & also launched a new Saas for LinkedIn Do check it out!

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