How to find a Senior Rust Developer with Experience in trading platform Developing and not go mad

GetIT was contacted by a company developing an Algorithmic Trading platform. They were looking for a Senior Rust Developer with experience in Algorithmic Trading. In the article we'll share how we managed to find this rare diamond.
I give the floor to our recruiter Margarita.

We can't disclose the name of the customer's company, so we'll just call it the Customer.

What was the task

The customer approached GetIT with an extraordinary request: to find a Senior Rust Developer with experience in developing trading platforms. The company realized they were looking for an extremely rare specialist and that it might not be possible to find the exact match. Therefore, they were ready to take a broader look — the main requirement was that the person had to be suitable for the tasks.
The candidate had to participate in the algorithmic trading platform development on Rust in quite a pumped team.

Experience in building complex multi-threaded high-loaded architecture in Rust or C++ and experience in developing algorithmic trading systems (HFT) were important in terms of skills.
The client didn't set any strict deadlines and the terms were flexible: I could offer either a developer with experience in HFT, serious expertise in developing complex multi-threaded high-loaded architecture in C++ and a little experience in Rust, or a strong Rust developer ready to dive into algorithmic trading. The ideal is for the person to know both of these at a high level.
Despite such high demands, the salary offered by the company wasn't higher than the market salary and without any special bonuses — this also challenged the task.

Looking ahead, I can say that I managed to find a suitable candidate.

July 2022: the search began

I received the application in July 2022. The first thing I did was to pull up the GetIT's candidate database.

Shortly before this application, I closed a vacancy for a Rust developer. Went through the contacts of those candidates.

Contacted the candidates from a similar field.

Used standard search channels:
  • Social networks
  • Github
  • Stackoverflow
  • HH
  • Rust developers' specialized chats, and so on.

I showed the first candidate after 2 weeks of searching.

I introduced several Rust-developers with 3+ years of experience to the Customer, but they didn't manage to pass the technical interview. The company had a very strong team of developers and were looking for someone to match - even Senior and Lead level candidates from other serious companies with high-profile names turned out to be weak for this project.
There was even a developer who rewrote the Binance engine from Java to Rust, and was the author of a popular book about Rust on Amazon, but we didn't reach an agreement.
That's when I realized: I had to go backwards!

August: changed the search strategy

When the Customer rejected the fifth Rust developer, I decided to go from the other end. I started looking not for Rust-developers with experience in algotrading, but on the contrary - people from the field of algorithmic trading who know Rust.

And went down the same path again:

  • Candidate Database
  • Social networks
  • Github
  • Stackoverflow
  • HH
  • specialized chats, and so on.

I started suggesting candidates: some were a good match in terms of skills, but didn't match the tasks, some - on the contrary.

After all, the new strategy worked!

November 2022: found the perfect candidate

At the beginning of November, I showed the Customer the tenth anniversary candidate. He was a perfect match: in terms of skills, tasks, and motivation.
This candidate was one of the first developers of the Sberbank CIB algorithmic trading platform. A third of the algorithms at Sberbank CIB were his work.
It was clear it was a match after the very first interview. At the end of November, the candidate had the second technical interview, and then an offer. And although the candidate already had several offers at that time, he accepted ours. It was a victory!

Customer's Feedback

Honestly, I did not expect such a result. Rita provided us with brilliant candidates, but we had very high demands and non-standard tasks. There were even those who we tried to recruit on our own, but they would not respond to us, while Rita managed to get through to them and get them to the interview. I don't know how she did it, but it's a fact. We are very happy that we turned to your agency!!! Thank you, GetIT!

5 tips if you are looking for a rare specialist

When you are looking for a rare specialist, it is important:

  1. Go beyond the circle of obvious sources and use targeted search channels: specialized groups, companies, specialists from which may be interested in a vacancy.
  2. Establish contact with the Customer and always be in touch.
  3. If the first candidates are not successful, find out what exactly didn't fit - so that you can quickly adjust the search and show more targeted candidates.
  4. Discuss with customers which criteria are crucial and which ones can be reconsidered.
  5. Study the market to understand how many suitable candidates can actually be found.

This story is about the importance of being flexible, looking outside the box and not being afraid to try. In our case, Margarita's resourcefulness, extensive experience in recruiting IT specialists and excellent communication skills played a determining role.

If you have a challenging vacancy, tight deadlines, are looking for a rare specialist and need guarantees - fill in an application form and we will provide you with the first CVs in as little as 24 hours.