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Case study: The story of Devigus Engineering AG

At this small Swiss software shop, every open position to backfill puts pressure on the team. Until the son of the founder steps in for a recruiting sprint

DEVIGUS is a family-owned, boutique IT solutions provider. Their focus on bespoke solutions means they like to keep their development department small and the culture very familiar. In this situation, every developer knows exactly what they are working on and how they fit into the larger team structure. However, this also means that if one person leaves the team, this gap is felt instantly. Unfortunately, this was the situation founder and CEO Arturo Devigus found himself in.

The Challenge:

In a team of eight, a position open for too long can endanger projects and team morale.

Having initially used the services of an external tech recruiter, four months later they were still without a single candidate. Being a small family business, this was something he discussed with his son, Enrico Mayor, who is a member of the board currently enrolled at ETH Zurich in computer science.
Looking at the unfavorable results so far, they decided to cancel the recruiter’s contract and invest in new channels. Mayor already had something in mind: “As a student, I am on Stack Overflow every day, where I can see the banner ads for job listings. So I knew I wanted to try this.”
He contacted Stack Overflow straight away, and after the initial consultation, it was an easy choice. “We spoke about the situation at hand, and it became quite clear DEVIGUS would benefit from an approach that relied heavily on actively sourcing candidates through the candidate database.”

The Solution:

The new generation of recruiting, and a new recruiting platform.

As a first step, Mayor created a presence for DEVIGUS, a Company Page. “Stack Overflow’s onboarding for the tool was super easy.” He got a photographer to highlight the quiet and productive office space their development department enjoys. And in the content, he focused on the things that appeal most to developers.

“If I were to think up a candidate search perfect for developers, the candidate search is how I would do it.”

Enrico Mayor

While the DEVIGUS website promotes their shareholder management product, which became the standard in Switzerland and is used by companies ranging from UBS, Credit Suisse, to Nestle, the Stack Overflow Company Page focuses on how developers arrive at this product. “Our culture is based on trust and independence,” says Mayor. “Our developers work on a schedule that suits them.” So this gets highlighted in the benefits section, alongside the ability to create “Swiss-made software” without any outsourcing.

40 messages, 4 interviews, 3 hires. In just two weeks of recruiting sprint, Devigus was able to backfill their position.

As the second step, Mayor started an active sourcing sprint, identifying and contacting developers. “We really felt the need to hire someone, so I sat down and spent two weeks contacting candidates.” A student himself, he knew what it felt like being contacted about positions. So he knew he had to put in the time. “Stack Overflow’s representatives sent really useful tips, based on which I created a template.” Customizing it for each candidate, he contacted around 40 developers in those two weeks.

The result:

With a personalized approach, active sourcing can show quick results.

“What’s great about the candidate search is you can filter by technologies used and by location. So I could really learn a lot about the candidates, and then contact them with talking points about our offer.” Even though it was a considerable time investment to do this for each of the candidates, he got the results. “Of course not all candidates are going to be available, but I got friendly replies from pretty much everyone.” In the end, they invited four candidates. And hired three of them

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