solving tech recruitment hurdles

A Practical Guide to Solving Tech Recruitment Hurdles With Remote LatAm Talent

Gain tech recruitment success by recruiting remote LatAm talent. Learn strategies, benefits, and a step-by-step hiring process.

A Practical Guide to Solving Tech Recruitment Hurdles With Remote LatAm Talent

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Finding tech professionals in the US is becoming increasingly difficult. Companies are facing challenges in sourcing and screening candidates, which is pushing them to look beyond traditional markets.

Latin America (LatAm) has emerged as a key region for this search, offering skilled tech talent, cost savings, and convenient time zone alignment.

This guide breaks down the tricky landscape of tech hiring, tackling the issues companies deal with today. We’ll explore why LatAm is becoming a go-to spot for tech talent and provide a clear guide to hiring in this region, including a step-by-step process and tips for success.

The Uphill Battle in Tech Recruitment: Why Hiring Engineers Is Hard

Organizations find themselves in an uphill battle when trying to attract and retain tech talent, grappling with multifaceted challenges that redefine the hiring landscape. Here are four of the biggest issues they run up against:

1. Tech talent drought

The US tech sector is facing a big problem—a shortage of 1.1 million skilled workers. This makes the search for qualified individuals highly competitive and raises standards for employers.

2. Most talent is already taken

The unemployment rate in the US tech industry is just 2.3%, considerably lower than the national unemployment rate of 3.7%. Since most skilled tech professionals are already actively contributing to different projects and companies, there is a smaller pool of available talent, making the competition among recruiters even more intense.

3. There are better offers elsewhere

Over half of job proposals to tech professionals are declined due to better options elsewhere, emphasizing the need for businesses to not only attract but also retain talent with effective strategies.

4. Soaring salary demands

Salaries in the tech sector are on the rise, driven by the scarcity of skilled workers. Furthermore, almost 50% of tech experts already feel undervalued, believing their pay doesn’t match their skills.

The rising demand for tech expertise combined with the perception of a pay gap has led professionals to ask for higher pay, and companies feel the squeeze on their budgets. This trend challenges organizations to manage their biggest expense—labor costs—while trying to meet these increasing salary expectations.

Average tech salary in the US over time
Source: Dice Tech Salary Report 2023

A Smarter Way to Hire Tech Talent: LatAm

LatAm provides a broad range of potential benefits as a source of tech talent. Here’s why considering LatAm for your tech hiring needs is a strategic move:

Software engineers are in high demand

In LatAm, software engineers are the most sought-after professionals.

Countries like Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, and Mexico are tech hotspots, home to a large pool of professionals with a wide range of skills ready to push your projects to the next level.

Sought-after tech and programming language skills

The talent pool in LatAm is well-versed in major programming languages, including Java, JavaScript, React, Next.js, and Python. In LatAm, you can find top candidates for any tech role and seniority level.

Commitment and motivation

Choosing LatAm means tapping into a substantial workforce known for its dedication and drive. Working for American companies provides a great opportunity for LatAm talent to progress and develop their careers. It also implies significantly higher salaries than those available at local companies, as well as greater stability. 

As a result, this unique dynamic reduces attrition rates and keeps developers economically motivated.

Time zone alignment

In LatAm, you’ll discover top-tier tech talent right in your time zone—a perfect blend of skill, cost effectiveness, and shared working hours that ensures smooth collaboration. 

Unlike India or the Philippines, where you might find skill and savings but struggle with time zone differences, LatAm (especially Mexico and Colombia) aligns perfectly with the US for seamless day-to-day teamwork, whether you need a regular team member or to collaborate on extensive projects.

Strong English proficiency

LatAm engineers have substantial experience working with clients or employers from the US and Canada. Argentina and Mexico, in particular, are thriving hubs of English-speaking tech talent, boasting a substantial pool of professionals proficient in English.

According to the EF English Proficiency Index, Argentina consistently ranks high in English proficiency, often in the “high proficiency” category. Mexico, while slightly lower, maintains a commendable position, often in the “moderate proficiency” range.

This proficiency underscores the ability of LatAm engineers to communicate effectively and work seamlessly with English-speaking clients and teams. 

Soft skills superiority

LatAm professionals stand out for their strong soft skills, like leadership, adaptability, and problem-solving.

Since they often live in countries with unstable political and economic conditions, these professionals know how to deal with fast-changing market conditions and regulations. LatAm experts naturally focus on finding solutions, bringing valuable contributions to your projects.

Cut costs, not quality

The region offers clear cost savings, ranging between 30% and 70% compared with the US for the most in-demand roles. Choosing LatAm talent isn’t just about assembling a motivated, skilled team; it’s a smart move that also makes financial sense.

IT roles salaries US vs LatAm

Challenges of Hiring in LatAm

Exploring the LatAm talent pool is a big opportunity, but it comes with its own set of challenges. You also need to familiarize yourself with the regional talent market. It’s more than just hiring—it’s a nuanced process that requires a careful approach in order to be successful. 

These are some of the most common issues faced by organizations that decide to hire remotely from LatAm for the first time:

Cultural resume nuances 

Traditional resume styles and credentials usually have some differences between LatAm and the US. Check out the table below to familiarize yourself with these subtleties and avoid overlooking exceptional talent. 

Traditional resume styles and credentials differences between LatAm and US

Compensation and benefits knowledge gaps

Figuring out the financial side of hiring in LatAm can be a bit complex. The expectations for salaries and benefits might be different from what you’re used to in the US. 

To make sure you don’t miss out on the right candidates, take the time to understand and align your compensation packages with the standards in the region. This not only helps you attract top talent but also shows your commitment to providing fair and competitive remuneration. 

If you want to learn more about the specifics of costs and salaries in LatAm relative to the US, our salary guide is a valuable resource. It covers over 80 positions across 10 categories (including IT), offering insights to help you navigate this talent market effectively.

Balancing monetary incentives and cultural fit

While attractive USD salaries may catch the eye, it’s crucial to consider more than just financial incentives. Relying solely on monetary perks can lead to hires who might not align with your company culture, potentially resulting in higher turnover rates. 

Striking a balance between competitive salaries and a cultural fit ensures that you attract hires who not only contribute their skills but also seamlessly integrate into your organization.

Different screening practices

Understanding how to hire in LatAm involves taking a more detailed approach to selecting the right candidates. Rather than sticking to the basics, consider adding extra steps to your hiring process. This could mean:

  • Asking interview questions that test cultural fit and values alignment
  • Assessing English proficiency through in-depth video or live screenings
  • Evaluating candidates’ skills with case studies

This thorough screening process can help you identify individuals who not only have the required skills but also align with your company’s values and vision.

For further insights into screening remote foreign workers, you may want to explore our best tips to screen remote foreign workers. They offer practical guidance to ensure you’re making informed decisions when assembling your remote team.

7 Steps To Hire LatAm’s Top 1% Tech Talent

If you’re planning to undertake the entire hiring journey yourself, a comprehensive plan is essential. Follow these seven steps—from figuring out your needs and budget to making an appealing job offer:

1. Define needs and budget

  • Clearly outline your project needs and set a budget.
  • Focus your search on finding the right candidates.
  • Recognize that hiring tech talent takes extra effort because they have many opportunities.

2. Post your job

  • Candidates will want to learn more about the job and the company they will be working for. Create an engaging job description that clearly explains the job responsibilities and the project value.
  • You can use platforms like LinkedIn to post your job ad and find top tech talent.

3. Review and shortlist candidates

  • Contact around 35 people for each role, aiming to find two good fits. You should assess skills, experience, and team fit through careful resume screening.
  • Look for previous experience with US or international companies and check their tech background.

4. Conduct interviews

  • Use interviews to assess qualifications, problem-solving ability, and communication skills.

5. Check references

  • Verify credentials through references and conduct background checks.

6. Make an offer

  • Craft an appealing offer with an enticing salary and benefits package.
  • Ensure the offer is attractive for talent in LatAm while saving costs for your business.

7. Onboard and integrate

  • Set clear expectations and provide support during onboarding.
  • Address practical aspects like hardware needs, payment processes, and additional benefits.

If sourcing and screening candidates on your own seems like too much work for you or your organization, a recruiting service agency could be the answer.

Professional recruiters are your go-to for finding the right person for your remote tech job. They have access to a large talent pool of professionals looking for opportunities like yours, so they can find, attract, and deliver good candidate profiles fast.

When picking a recruitment agency that specializes in LatAm talent, check if they’re experienced in hiring for remote positions. Ask about their work with international clients, how they find candidates, and how they decide who’s a good fit. This way, you make sure you’re teaming up with the right partner to find the best candidate for your needs.

Tips for Successful Hiring in LatAm

Streamline your interview process

Prepare your interview process in advance, ensuring it covers all essential aspects without becoming overly lengthy. In this competitive market, a swift hiring process is crucial to securing top talent. Move efficiently to prevent the risk of losing a promising candidate.

Tailor your tech stack assessment

Consider the tech stack relevant to the role and develop questions before the interview. Craft interview questions based on the candidate’s experience. You should pay close attention to their practical usage of programming languages, proficiency levels, and overall comfort. 

When hiring for leadership roles, prepare specific questions about the candidate’s past experiences. Ask for examples of challenges they’ve faced and how they tackled them. Get insights into their leadership style by exploring situations where they led teams or projects. This way, you’ll understand how they handle issues that could arise in their new position and make effective managerial decisions.

Probe motivations and career goals

Understand why the candidate wants the job, their career goals, and their expectations. Make sure these align with what your company can provide. When extending a job offer, also consider the candidate’s current career stage to ensure it’s a sensible fit for both parties.

Prioritize speed in decision-making

Acknowledge that top talent is in high demand in the market. Recognize that the candidate you’re engaging with might be considering offers from other companies. 

To secure your preferred candidate, move through the hiring process quickly. Quick decision-making increases your chances of making a successful hire in a competitive talent landscape.

Final Thoughts

Hiring engineers can be tricky, but choosing talent in LatAm is a solid solution. This region offers top-notch candidates for your remote team, offering big savings compared with US-based hires.

Even with its challenges, a good hiring plan and guidance from external recruitment partners can turn this complex journey into a success.

Partnering with Near makes your remote hiring simpler, allowing you to tap into the vast talent market in LatAm with minimal effort on your side. Near speeds up your hiring by handling screening, giving you a list of carefully vetted LatAm candidates you can interview for free, all in under 21 days. Discover more about how we can help your business by filling out this form.

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