Vasily Voropaev, a founder and CEO at, a serial entrepreneur, and a dedicated promoter of remote work and remote teams shared his experience in material for

You can read the original article at the link.

I have been working in remote search and recruiting for 20 years. I have more than 10,000 hand-picked middle and senior IT specialists—direct employees whom I outsource and outstaff to other companies. So I know when I’m saying the market has changed a lot over the past two years. The old strategies for hiring candidates are not working anymore. And this is why.

1. To find one worthy candidate, you need to offer vacancies to hundreds

Recruiters use the concept of “recruiting funnel”—this is an analog of a sales funnel, only for hiring. The top of the funnel are candidates whose profile is baseline relevant to the job. These candidates receive offers to consider the vacancy and either react or don’t react to them. After that, the recruiting funnel is split into many stages:

Finally, the last stage of the funnel is the candidate who accepted your offer and actually went to work.

The recruiting funnel is ruthless right now. There are a lot of people with relevant knowledge but barely anyone who is free and who is the exact perfect fit.

Here’s an example of an average IT-developer recruiting funnel, with candidates to actual employees:

  • 2015: 150 to 1
  • Early 2020: 300 to 1
  • End of 2021: 500 to 1

This greatly increases the search time. It is very hard to find relevant and experienced developers in a few weeks. Also, companies have to invest even more in the development of their brand so that candidates are eager to join them.

2. Candidates at the senior level and above are no longer looking for work—they need to be hunted

Such candidates no longer enter the open market. You will not find them on the job boards (except when they want an incredible salary or are misleading about their experience). Usually, tech leads and seniors now are just reacting to incoming proposals. They have enough incoming offers from companies, and their inboxes are full.

In my experience, a senior front-end developer with a good background and in an active job search (means he posted his resume on all job sites and mentioned an active job search on all social networks) will get around 500 vacancies per week.

Simply posting job offers is not enough anymore. You need to have something extra: a very high salary for the country the developers are from, beloved brand, perks that make your offer exclusive in some way.

3. A job offer does not guarantee the candidate will accept

Even when they passed all your tests, even when they have been to several interviews, it doesn’t mean they will work for you. A senior-level candidate usually chooses from three to five offers. Accordingly, companies have to make an average of two to five job offers (to different finalists) before the vacancy is closed.

Not an obvious fact: Even if a candidate is not looking for a job, they may have several offers awaiting their decision, and you will compete with them.

One of the growing trends that we are seeing is pending offers. Companies are ready to wait for a candidate’s decision, on average, up to six months.

What this means: You cannot stop the search even if you have made an offer to your favorite candidate. The risk of a candidate rejecting an offer persists until the day they start work—and sometimes this extends even to the first weeks of work.

4. Your candidates will receive counteroffers from their current employers

There was a time when most employers viewed employee leaving as a lack of loyalty and were not willing to retain them. Now, many companies assess the loss of an employee as critical for the business (in terms of lost profits, costs of search, onboarding, etc.) and are ready to make counteroffers.

5. You need to spend more time searching

All of the factors above lengthen the recruiting process. Currently, I estimate it to be like this:

  • Hiring middle IT specialists can take an average of 1.5 months.
  • Looking for a senior takes up to three months.
  • Finding a team lead can easily take up to six months.
  • The executive positions, head and chief, can take six months or more.

6. You need to quickly make a decision about the hire

In 2020, candidates, on average, were considering offers for two weeks before accepting one of them. In 2022, the situation changed. The period before the final offer was accepted was in some cases reduced to one week.

Therefore, you should reduce the number of stages for evaluating candidates, remove lengthy tests and adjust your schedule to suit the candidates’ capabilities. Try to move as quickly as possible so as not to miss out on the best candidates.

7. You need to have even better recruiters

As the difficulty of finding candidates increases, recruiters begin to directly influence a company’s business results. Finding and attracting candidates now requires recruiters who:

  • Understand the specifics of IT professions.
  • Adapt the recruiting process for a specific task.
  • Build long-term communication with candidates.

These recruiters tend to be expensive, and given the growth in search terms, you now have to pay a lot more for each successfully hired specialist.

That’s why I’ve seen many companies in the last two years start to prefer using the services of professional recruiting companies or outstaffing agencies. In this case, you don’t need to invest in your own recruiting; just visit a specialized website and hire the employees you need. Often, these agencies have their own recruitment strategies or unique market positions that make it cheaper for them to find and attract candidates.

For those who are still trying to do their own recruiting the traditional way, as you may have felt, the times are tough.