Modern HR Approach to a Tricky Software Engineers’ Market

Auriga’s General Manager, Andrey Pronin, shared his views on recruiting and HR development practices, tips, and Auriga “know-how” in an exclusive interview with Software Russia.

It’s a well-known fact that finding reliable and qualified software engineers has become a tricky task in today’s modern world. Whether you want to establish a high-tech start-up or just launch an innovative software product, finding great talent is all that matters at the end of the day. Consequently, you’ll need to grow your talent from scratch, poach it, or engage a software-services provider, like Auriga, that helps clients solve such issues. The abovementioned problem is global in nature—whether you are in the U.S., Europe, Russia, or India, it cannot be completely ignored. So how do outsourcing providers solve this recruiting task for themselves? Auriga’s General Manager, Andrey Pronin, talks about the right recruiting processes, employee-development approaches, and labor-market trends in an interview with Software Russia.

Auriga is proud to be one of the best customer-rated service providers in the world. Providing such service requires engineers and managers that not only have the right technical skills, but also possess the right attitude and culture. “Traditionally, we have preferred to take on more experienced employees—no matter whether they came to us from the labor pool or from another company. Currently, no more than 10 percent of our engineers have less than a year’s experience. However, it is becoming increasingly difficult to recruit people that possess the necessary technical skills, and who also match our corporate culture. So now, we are moving towards another model and looking for more junior staff with brief experience in other companies. In this case, we can not only provide them with necessary skills but also instill our approach to challenge handling, client interaction, and similar matters.”

Besides the right attitude and culture, Auriga considers a sense of the development process as one of the most important skills in the modern R&D world. “Usually, the term ‘process’ is interpreted too narrowly, so I need to explain what I mean. Overall, we are talking about the ability to obtain new and relevant information quickly, to learn new systems, to understand unfamiliar architecture, and to compare multiple platforms in order to choose the best for the project. Obviously, proficiency in these practices comes with time, but the basic foundation should be laid during the initial training.”

As the education system provides little help in teaching the students those essential skills, Auriga works on developing those qualities in ‘freshers’ through the internal training system. Graduates of technical universities go through “the initial training period, consisting of intensive courses focused on a specific engineering area, and working under the supervision of a formally assigned mentor, [this] takes about three months […] the result of these efforts is just a good, junior-level engineer who can already be used in real-life projects, but who still has a long way to go.”

In addition to the training courses offered by the company, English language proficiency is also something that Auriga looks for and then helps its employees develop. “The knowledge of English is much better than it was seven to ten years ago. […] a basic level of English is obviously not enough, unless a person intends to stay at the junior level for years.” As a part of its training program, Auriga “partially subsidizes the cost of training, with the remainder being paid by the employee to encourage motivation. When someone invests their own money—even a small amount—they treat the process more seriously.”