I've been having some trouble tracking down someone to hire for a Rails
position, so I figured I'd try here. Monster and 37signals haven't been
much help so far. I think getting people to sit at a desk in Milwaukee
is the tough part, but upper management isn't willing to budge on that.
So here the current job posting we have. The right candidate would get
55-65k per year. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you're
I'm probably wasting my time here, but I'm going to try to give you some
perspective on why you might have trouble filling this job.
First, let's split your pool of candidates into those who already live in
Milwaukee and those who would have to relocate. I'm not sure what the going
rate for web programmers with 2+ years of experience is in Milwaukee, but I
can tell you that your salary range falls short by tens of thousands of
dollars for where I am. I think you'll have a hard time getting someone to
relocate to Milwaukee with a salary offer like that. If someone was willing
to relocate, there are much more lucrative jobs available even taking
into account differences in cost of living.
Now, for those who already live in Milwaukee, there are those who prefer
to work in an office, those who prefer to work remotely, and those who
could go either way. The ones who prefer to work remotely are right out, so
you're down to those who either want an office or will go either way. If
they'll go either way, they can find much better paying work remotely, so
you're unlikely to be able to attract them with that salary range.
Out of the remaining pool you only want those who have some confidence in
their aesthetic sense (or that second sentence will scare them away) and
not only have some design skills but are looking for a job that might use
Further restricting your pool is the Adobe software experience, however
cursory. Worse, you want *nix knowledge. So the Linux-heads who have never
had cause to touch Adobe software are out, as are the Windows-heads who
have never touched a *nix box. This may or may not significantly restrict
So here you are, looking for a Milwaukee resident (or someone who has a
reason other than a job to relocate to Milwaukee, in which case they are
imminently Milwaukee residents anyway and the point is moot) who prefers
working in an office, has 2+ years of web programming, has some graphics
design ability, fulfills the various other requirements, and is actually
looking for a job in that salary range. You're screwed.
While I'm willing to believe that the requirements you're listing are
appropriate and reasonable, I don't think you can find someone to do that
job at that salary. Milwaukee may be a perfectly nice place to live and
work, but if you can't draw from the larger pool of potential candidates
throughout the country, you won't be able to find anyone. Even lifting the
restriction on remote work (which you claim is a non-starter) may not be
enough since, as I mentioned, there is more lucrative work out there for
remote workers. You need to raise your salary range significantly.
Alternately, don't publish a range and request a desired salary from your
applicants. Maybe offer to pay relocation expenses. That will give you some
sense of how much money people are expecting for the kind of job opening
you have. I can't give you an exact number, but I can tell you that you're
aiming too low right now.