Soft Skills or Technical Skills, what to look when Hiring Programmers

Hiring Programmers: Soft Skills vs. Technical Skills Assessment

To many, the question posed in the title would seem to be frivolous. The software developers’ technical skills are the most critical evaluation parameter for most of us. Most businesses expect software developers to leverage their technical skills to craft intelligent software.

So, you might ask about the need to assess their soft skills. If you also have questions about the necessity of soft skill evaluations or the best way to evaluate a programmer, this blog is for you.

Why Do You Need Assessment?

Let us begin our discussion with the most basic question. You probably already know the need for conducting an assessment. But, it is nonetheless vital to reiterate the same. While completing a recruitment process for hiring programmers, you get several CVs.

Many of the CVs you receive have qualifications and experience that make them suitable for the role. So, how can you sift through the applications and hire the best resource? How do you know they can do what their CV says? Or whether they will be able to adjust to your team?

The solution to these problems lies in conducting an accurate and fair assessment. The answer to these questions lies in achieving a real and honest evaluation. The assessment results can serve as a reasonable basis for hiring programmers. It will also help avoid biases during the recruitment process and help you get the best resource.

Which Type of Assessment Should You Choose?

After figuring out the need for assessment, the next point is considering the assessment type. You already know that by evaluating the software developers’ technical skills, you can determine whether they can deliver.

But, having a person with excellent technical skills is not enough. A potential candidate should also be a team player, communicate well, and work collaboratively. In an increasingly connected world, we cannot survive individually.

Collaboration is becoming necessary even in areas long considered ripe for individual brilliance. So, even if you have genius developers onboard, you need them to collaborate for successful project execution.

Therefore, you need to evaluate both technical and soft skills. HR professionals also agree on soft skill assessment when hiring programmers. In a recent survey, 91% of HR professionals revealed having soft skills can give candidates an edge in a job search.

What Soft Skills to Look for While Hiring Programmers?

Therefore, assessing software developers’ technical skills is not enough to evaluate their job fitness. You need to assess the soft skills also while hiring programmers. But, the question is, what are the soft skills you should consider?

Some of the essential soft skills that every programmer should possess are communication skills, critical thinking, problem-solving ability, etc. But the list does not end here. Listed below are some skills that every programmer you hire should possess.


Today communication is a must-have skill to excel in any profession. The same goes for developers. Developers need to communicate effectively with other teams, fellow developers, clients, and management.

To develop practical solutions, they must listen carefully to client needs, clarify issues, communicate challenges, brief project progress status, and address client complaints. The developers can keep the client happy and engaged by doing these tasks effectively. Thus, good communication is the quintessential soft skill every developer should possess.

Problem Solving Ability

A coder having good technical skills will not encounter coding issues right away. But, when bugs appear, the coder should have the patience to go to the root cause and fix the same.

The developer might even have to spend weeks solving an issue in case of software bugs. Therefore, while hiring programmers, consider whether the candidate has the tenacity to go to the root cause of problems and solve them.


Creativity is a vital skill for the developer to possess. A creative bend of mind allows the developer to look for solutions outside the box. Creativity will enable the developer to taste success and your company to introduce a new solution to the market. Thus, while hiring programmers, look for those with a creative bend of mind.


Irrespective of how talented a developer is, they would not know everything. Therefore, they must have an open mind to receive suggestions and implement good ideas. They should also be accessible to other team members and help solve their issues.


Developers sometimes need to work as part of a team. The successful execution of a team project requires the team working ability of all members.

There should always be healthy collaboration and sharing of ideas within the team to take the project forward and offer better solutions. Thus you must hire a dedicated software developer who is a team player.

Time Management

Being able to take control of time is a skill that serves a person well throughout their lives. Every project comes with a fixed deadline, and your developer’s ability to stick to the same is essential.

Developers who can manage their time well can deliver within schedule and honor commitments. This creates a positive impression on the client and helps avoid the last-minute rush. Therefore, consider the software developers’ technical skills and time management abilities while hiring.

Structuring the Selection Process

From the above discussion, it is amply clear that you need to consider both technical and soft skills while hiring programmers. The soft skills that you should consider are also listed above. The next point is figuring out the perfect way to structure the interview process to consider both aspects effectively.

You can start the process with a technical skill assessment in this context. After shortlisting some candidates through the process, consider conducting an online soft skills assessment. The personal interview will help you study their body language and evaluate their suitability for the role.

Concluding Remarks

Businesses in most sectors these days need software to perform efficiently. To address this requirement, you need brilliant software developers. Considering the software developers’ technical skills and interpersonal ability is essential to hiring the best resource.

In the above pages, we have tried to cover almost all questions that you might have regarding the recruitment process. We have also offered a tentative guideline that you can follow while recruiting.

Want to know more? Connect now.

About John Tie

John Tie is working as a Digital Marketer and content strategist with Virtual Employee, offering affordable and scalable remote staffing solutions for mainly Small and Medium Businesses (SMEs) around the world in over 150 domains. He is a versatile tech writer and loves exploring the latest technology trends, entrepreneur and startup column.

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