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Developers Hit the Auction Block

Posted on 10.18.2012

If your company has ever recruited a developer, chances are the experience was taxing. This group is in such high demand that it not only leaves the rest of us questioning our career choices, but also makes the job search process for developers a highly polluted one.

This group is what Developer Auction Co-Founder Matt Mickiewicz (and also the founder of Flippa) terms "The 5 percent that are never unemployed".

Mickiewicz’s site, launched April 2012, brings together developers and companies in an auction format. Developers are exposed to new job opportunities from pre-qualified employers/bidders at 500-plus start-ups. In turn, employers are able to recruit top engineering talent.   

“Engineers in San Francisco get an average of a recruitment pitch every 31 hours...the noise is so high that the good opportunities get thrown out with the bad,” said Mickiewicz. “We're allowing start-ups to get in front of top engineering talent from the likes of Google, Facebook, Twitter, MIT and Stanford — engineers who otherwise would have never read or responded to a "cold" recruitment pitch sent via email or LinkedIn.”

Since Developer Auction’s August debut, two auctions have concluded. According to the company, in its first auction, which ended Aug. 31, 88 engineers put themselves up for auction and 142 start-ups, including Quora and Dropbox, submitted more than $30 million in job offers. 

Developer Auction does monitor the talent pool. In the second auction, which ended Oct. 18, 3,600 developers applied and only 154 were approved. Additionally, there were 749 offers made to 150 developers, with almost $80 million in offers.

Important to note, is that there are no obligations from the developers to accept the highest offer (or any offer at all) and offers made by companies are non-binding, as developers can decide to interview based on offers. 

The benefits of this service are multi-pronged. 

“We're flipping the funnel...rather than writing 20 cover letters, and filling out 20 application forms, we're saving developers time by having companies who are interested in their skills, at their location, at that particular point in time, come to them with indicative offers,” said Mickiewicz . “Engineers no longer have to agree to an in-person interview (or three) before finding out how much they are going to get paid. We're cutting recruitment agencies and headhunters out of the equation and putting the developers in touch with the CEOs, Founders and CTOs at VC funded companies.”

Additionally, the company notes that employers save 30-50 percent compared to traditional recruiters and developers save time by only interviewing with companies who can afford them. 


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