How to Hire Awesome Engineers while on Vacation

Here is a question for you.

How would it feel to go on a week-long vacation after a quick 15 minute handover with your Head of People, come back all refreshed and full of energy, and know that you have scheduled interviews with extremely promising engineers while you were away?

Adam, a lead technical recruiter at Beamery, did just that, and gave us the skinny on how he used Beamery to do it.

Starting with a quality pool

Given how fast Beamery is growing these days, the Quality Assurance team has to scale up quickly, so that it can keep up with the testing needs of company, as well as keep implementing and improving development and testing practices with the rest of the engineering team as it grows.

Adam started looking for his new QA engineer in an existing pool of candidates first. Those were candidates him and other Beamery team members had uploaded from Linkedin or sourced personally. He added about 400 of those initial contacts to the QA Engineer vacancy.

When hiring on full speed for a quickly growing team, having quality leads already in the pipeline is crucial- it means less time spent sifting through profiles on the internet, and more spent actually talking to candidates and finding the right person for each role. When hiring software developpers, that is especially valuable, as the hiring process has more steps and can take even longer than usual.

recruiting automation pool

Getting the right input

With the right pool in place, the next step was crafting the right message. Instead of simply picking an email from the template library and giving it a few tweaks before firing it off, Adam scheduled a meeting with the whole QA team to discuss the role.

They talked through three items:

  • Advantages of the team: What were the positives of their team? Why would anyone want to work with them? What did they like about Beamery, about their role, about the product and about the other teams?
  • The ideal candidate: Who were they looking for? Who was their ideal candidate, and what were their qualities? Was there anything they really couldn’t work with?
  • The tool stack: And last but not least, what tool did they work with? What were they planning on incorporating next?

The team had a personal stake in the hiring process- after all, they were the ones who would have to work with the new hire- and so their contribution was extremely valuable.

Building the campaign

The “first touch” of the hiring campaign was direct, fairly informal, and with a clear call-to-action: an invitation to pick a time on Adam’s calendar for a call to discuss the role.


The rest of the email incorporated the elements that the QA team had highlighted previously, and was extremely targeted to QA Engineers, starting from the subject line.

The campaign went out to 402 people only in three touches over three weeks. But out of those 402 candidates, 68% opened the email, and 21% picked a time for a call with Adam. For an email campaign, those are extremely good results, as email campaigns average a 24% open rate and 4% click rate for SMEs in the UK in 2017.

Because email responses and follow-ups were automated after that first touch, Adam didn’t need to be there for things to progress: candidates were automatically moved from one stage to the other after being scheduled for a call, taking a technical test, and then progressed to interviews with the hiring manager.

The power of good execution

Adam had a good strategy for hiring exceptional engineers: start with a pool of quality leads, research and define the role, and then send a targeted message out.

The plan itself wasn’t anything out of the ordinary, but it delivered the same level of success consistently, because he paid extra attention to the execution of every step.

Taking the time to talk not only to the hiring manager, but to the rest of the QA team, meant he could describe the role in more than just technical terms. Crafting an extremely targeted message ensured that people opened his email. His call-to-action- an invitation to directly pick a time slot on his calendar- made the mental effort of that “next step” minimal.

Recruiting automation gets results

Adam had three campaigns running simultaneously at the time he went on holiday: QA, DevOps, and NodeJS vacancies. He gave the same level of attention to the design of each of them, and got excellent results. You can see a summary from the DevOps campaign below. For this one, he used a DevOps inside joke as a running thread throughout the 4 touches- candidates loved it.


You don’t need to be at your desk for your pipeline to keep progressing. The manual work of identifying quality leads, moving candidates from one stage to another, or sending follow-ups, can be automated or scheduled in advance very easily. That’s why recruiters like Adam don’t worry about that part of the work as much.

Instead they focus on what really matter: understanding who the ideal candidates are, and what they are looking for in a job, getting them interested, and building a rapport with them.

State of Talent Engagement 2019 report

The results of the State of Talent Engagement 2019 survey are in! You can download the full report here for statistics and data on how companies plan to engage with talent in 2019.

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