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Hiring Tips & Insights: How BBD efficiently hired 7 local developers in a new talent market with OfferZen
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How BBD efficiently hired 7 local developers in a new talent market with OfferZen

22 September 2023, by Marcelle van Niekerk

Rapidly growing your developer team in an unfamiliar market can be an uphill battle. Despite the economic downturn, it continues to be challenging to reach job-seeking developers. It becomes an even greater hurdle in a new market, where devs are likely unfamiliar with your company’s brand and mission. Many companies turn to an array of sourcing solutions to overcome the problem – which can prove to be time-consuming or expensive.

Here’s how OfferZen helped BBD hire seven local developers within a year’s time, by providing an all-in-one solution for their hiring needs.

Check out the full case study here!


BBD recently launched in the Netherlands, and as a growing consultancy new to the local Dutch market, they needed to quickly scale their local team. This was slow going at first. In the beginning, they turned to agency recruitment channels and headhunted talent – but the hiring team struggled to find enough local, quality developers who were responsive to outreach.

Shara Chernel, Senior Account Manager at OfferZen, spoke to Maruschka Botha, Executive – Europe at BBD, about how their team overcame the challenge of scaling a tech team in a new market.

Maruschka has been helping the team at BBD in their intercontinental expansion. Shara Chernel has been an Account Manager at OfferZen for over two years, and has helped over 100 companies achieve their hiring goals.


Problems scaling a team in a new market

“Our primary challenge was sourcing talent locally. We relied heavily on time-consuming, unsustainable channels like headhunting and agency recruitment, and this affected our growth rate. Our message-to-response ratio was low, with only 2 or 3 responses from the 50 developers we contacted.”

– Maruschka Botha (Executive – Europe @ BBD)

In South Africa, the team had already been successful using OfferZen to hire 35 developers since 2017. It made sense to turn to OfferZen as an all-in-one solution to replace their current hiring channels during their expansion in Europe.

The challenge ahead was replicating the hiring success they saw in South Africa, but in the Netherlands.

Saving on hiring costs

The cost-per-hire can be high when it comes to traditional recruitment solutions – for example, Maruschka paid between 20 - 30% per hire using recruitment agencies. She soon saw multiple benefits when switching to OfferZen’s subscription model for unlimited hires. This move freed the team to reach out to any candidate on their shortlist:

“Our subscription with OfferZen has been an absolute game-changer for our growth in Europe. It’s been a huge relief for our budgeting not worrying about the cost of paying another agency fee for every single hire. With the help of OfferZen, we’ve been able to broaden our headcount quite fast and in a sustainable way.”

An OfferZen subscription gave BBD and their team the flexibility they needed to scale in rapidly changing times. The team has unlimited seats, and every team member can access all the candidates and features on the platform:

“When I went on maternity leave and had to hand over hiring responsibilities to another team, our OfferZen subscription made the transition frictionless. My team could simply log into the platform to access all the qualified candidates with the details they needed. It was an absolute lifesaver for us”.

“Our subscription has made hiring smoother and much more affordable. It has eliminated the need for paperwork and allowed us to access candidates at any time without worrying about additional costs.”

On OfferZen’s hiring plans, companies like BBD can make unlimited developer hires at a predictable annual cost and avoid varying hiring fees.

“We no longer have to rely on headhunters, recruitment agencies, or other solutions,” says Maruschka. “The OfferZen subscription helped us make our hiring costs predictable, at an affordable price. Given the past success, it was a no-brainer decision for me and the rest of the regional directors.”

Access to responsive developer talent

If you’ve ever tried to hire developers, then you know that one of the most common problems as a hiring team is unresponsiveness. This is unsurprising, given that developers are often flooded with outreach from recruiters — even when they’re not job searching in the first place.

On OfferZen, the BBD hiring team match with candidates that are actively job-seeking which improves the average response rate:

“95% of the candidates I reach out to on OfferZen respond, which is a huge improvement compared to other hiring solutions. We typically move forward with interviews for most candidates, helping us maintain a full pipeline of potential hires,” says Maruschka.

On other hiring channels, it can also often take several steps to find out whether the candidate aligns with the work and team requirements. OfferZen’s detailed candidate profiles share information like salary expectations, visa requirements, location, and workplace preferences — all to make it easier to find the right match from the get-go:

“OfferZen’s weekly shortlist of candidates provides a curated selection of qualified developers that match our needs,” Maruschka adds, “We know that not all developers want to work in consulting, so it is helpful to see upfront whether we would be a good fit for them.”

Finding diverse developers

Access to a diverse talent pool can be a challenge in the tech industry, which is well-known for its gender disparity.

BBD has been able to use OfferZen’s marketplace to tap into a diverse pool of developers they couldn’t find elsewhere:

“It’s important for us to be known as a multi-national company with a diverse team. With OfferZen’s support, we’ve achieved that. The developers we’ve hired have come from all around the world, which is amazing to see.”

“We’ve been able to hire four female developers in the past year, as well as developers with different cultures and nationalities. Walking into the office and seeing such a diverse team is truly awesome. One of our biggest achievements has been building a team that’s not male-dominated, and we’re proud to say that 40% of our team is female.”

The results

BBD has been able to fulfil seven of their open developer roles in the Netherlands through OfferZen in the past year:

“OfferZen puts in a lot of effort to ensure both employers and candidates have a great experience. Especially in the Dutch market, where the competition is fierce, we compete with big names like Booking, Uber, and Facebook.”

“As a smaller company, we value human interaction, and that’s one thing that OfferZen always delivers on for both companies and developers. I can trust OfferZen, as they don’t just push for numbers, but truly help you find the right fit.”

Are you hiring software developers? OfferZen is a developer hiring marketplace that connects curated developers with exciting job opportunities at over 2000 companies in Europe and Africa.

Hiring teams can make unlimited hires across all the roles on OfferZen, saving up to 50% compared to traditional recruitment costs.

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