If the wizards had existed in real life, there would have been no doubt they would call themselves DevOps engineers. These tech guys are responsible for so many things, from designing, creating, and maintaining infrastructure and systems to making sure that software functions as expected.
As you might have guessed, finding geniuses who can perform so many tasks isn’t always a straight road. In this article, we’ll take a journey together to learn how to find and recruit the most talented DevOps engineers. Based on our solid expertise, the JatApp team will show you all hiring options, uncover the truth about engineers’ salaries, and discuss their must-have skills. By the end of this guide, you’ll know where to find DevOps engineers and what interview questions to ask in order to handpick the most competent ones. So, let’s get started.
Why hire DevOps engineers at all?
Let’s say you need to buy a new sweater for this winter season. Of course, you may spend hours wandering at Macy’s, exercising while taking off all of your winter clothes in dressing rooms, trying on lots of new stuff, and standing in line to the cash desk. Or…you may simply scroll through several Amazon pages and buy a sweater in just a few clicks. If you’re more prone to the latter option, you might have a DevOps mindset. When it comes to software development, DevOps is all about the more efficient and smarter way of completing tasks.
DevOps refers to the set of processes and cultural philosophy that connect development and operations teams to deliver software products at a faster pace. It focuses on automation and cross-team cooperation to ensure both efficiency and high quality. Below, we explain why DevOps is important and what DevOps engineers bring to a software development table.
- Shorter development cycle
DevOps teams rely on tools that drive automation and innovative processes, which allows them to release deliverables more often and achieve higher quality with fewer hiccups. The faster you release new functionality and fix bugs, the quicker you satisfy clients’ needs and get a leg up on the competition.
- Fewer code defects
Teams may face deployment failures because of code defects. DevOps specialists ensure frequent code releases, which in turn makes it easier to detect various bugs. If failures happen, recovery is much faster with DevOps engineers, since the operations and development teams cooperate with each other to address a rising problem.
- Increased efficiency
DevOps engineers reduce the amount of manual work, such as testing and deployment, allowing software developers to concentrate on completing tasks that are hard to automate. They also use orchestration and containerization tools, such as Kubernetes and Docker, to manage products across different environments. To increase efficiency, they also track software performance in production and rely on that data to fix bugs more quickly.
What are your hiring options?
Okay, now you are 100% sure that DevOps engineers are what your project needs. So, now you’re at the hiring crossroads: you can look for freelancers, consider getting in-house engineers, or opt for collaborating with an outsourcing company. If you don’t know what’s best for you, let’s discuss each hiring option in more detail.
There is nothing wrong with hiring a freelancer for some smaller tasks, like setting up a database or site deployment. In fact, you can save a lot by choosing this hiring option, as in-house engineers would generally ask 2 to 4x more for their DevOps services.
Still, it’s not very common to hire DevOps freelancers for bigger projects. Working with someone from outside may simply ruin the cohesion of your software engineers’ team. Moreover, hiring freelancers has a major downside – you can’t be dead sure that you won’t run into some scammers, who are simply good at making up their resumes.
Building an in-house team of DevOps engineers implies long-term cooperation. So, if you have a big project, recruiting in-house engineers can be worth a shot. The longer DevOps specialists work together on a project, the more expertise they gain about your business and product. As a result, team collaboration is likely to be on a high level.
At the same time, you may feel that opting for in-house engineers would limit you to searching for talents in your local area only. EF EPI report suggests that today more than two billion people can speak English, which means that you can try your luck by looking for DevOps engineers in other countries, too.
If you’re not ready to shell out lots of money on in-house employees, cover their vacations, and pay their taxes, you may want to consider turning to an outsourcing software company for help. A vetted software development agency will take all the hustle out of managing your DevOps engineers. Ongoing payroll, accounting, workspace, and equipment are no longer your headache.
Plus, the offshore vendors will assist you in the hiring process and provide you a list of candidates that perfectly fit your project. You can also participate in the interview and make a final decision as to who will join your team.
And how much does it cost to hire a DevOps engineer?
The average annual salary of DevOps specialists starts from $99,527. If you want to hire senior DevOps engineers, be ready to spend $128,387 on average. These salaries don’t include cash incentives and bonuses that can add to the engineers’ total compensation.
Also, mind that DevOps engineers’ salaries may widely vary depending on the country. For instance, in the United States their services would cost you something around $147,000 annually, while in Canada, an average salary is around $130,000.
If you’re not ready to spend a fortune on DevOps engineers and leave the rest of your team without a penny, we recommend looking for workers in countries with lower cost of living, like Eastern European countries. For example, in Lithuania, these specialists are eager to work for $120,000, while in Ukraine you’ll be probably relieved to find out that top-notch engineers earn only $101,000. We’ve made a table for you to better understand in what countries you can scrimp and scrape.
DevOps engineers’ annual salaries by country
Fantastic DevOps engineers and where to find them
Believe it or not, but 58% of tech leaders report that recruiting experienced DevOps engineers is a serious challenge. So it’s no wonder that this profession is the seventh most demanded job in the world.
Sounds discouraging, but don’t let some statistics stop you from searching for these rare species. Below, you can find places where you can look for talented engineers.
UpWork is a great place to find freelance DevOps engineers from across the globe. All you need to do is to make a post with the job description and start getting proposals. Notably, you may also restrict these proposals to certain regions. This is especially convenient if you, for example, want to focus on specific countries where engineers’ salaries are lower. Once you’ve got enough proposals, the fun part begins – you can start checking them, conduct interviews, pick the most competent ones, and send them an invoice right in the website.
DevOps engineers on UpWork
LinkedIn is also a viable option when you search for talented and ambitious DevOps engineers. You can search for specialists by using such keywords as “DevOps engineer” or simply “DevOps”. What’s more, you can filter the results by years of experience, location, you name it. In addition, you may also search for groups related to DevOps engineering. There you may find specialists that commit to self-learning and want to stay up-to-date with DevOps technologies.
DevOps engineers on LinkedIn
To squeeze all juice out of your orange, you may also want to attend different conferences. Such places are a magnet for motivated and enthusiastic engineers that always want to learn more about new DevOps practices and extend their network with people like you! To give you a better idea, you can attend such popular conferences as the DevOps World or the DevOps Enterprise Summit. Furthermore, you can also explore different workshops, meetups, and other events related to the field.
What skills do good DevOps engineers possess?
If you reach out to a DevOps engineer, they’ll likely start telling you how professional and knowledgeable they are. Everyone can try to show off their strengths and hide their weaknesses in order to get a decent job and there’s nothing new about that. But for you to find a perfect fit, you should know both hard and soft skills that these specialists must have to perform their job well. Without further ado, let’s take a look at necessary skill sets of DevOps engineers.
- Expertise in Linux/Unix administration
- Strong grasp of DevOps tools (HashiCorp Vault, Gitlab, Serf, Packer, Terraform, and Consul)
- Profound knowledge of containerization and container orchestration (Docker, LXD, Proxmox/KVM)
- The ability to work with cloud platforms (Google Cloud Platform, Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure)
- Solid experience with logging and monitoring tools (Logstash, Prometheus, Elasticsearch, Kibana)
- Expertise in continuous integration and continuous delivery
- The ability to stay proactive and focused with little to no oversight
- Good communication skills to effectively work with team members performing different roles
- Strategic mindset to make both short and long term decisions
- A good command of English (B1 and higher)
An interview prompt to filter out imposters
Once you’ve got a few candidates, you should make sure that they are competent enough to perform the DevOps role without major flaws. For this reason, we’ve compiled a list of interview questions to help you find a gifted DevOps engineer and not to waste your time on impostors.
- How did you address load balancing and scaling in your previous jobs?
- Can you tell us about a time when you faced a problem in your DevOps role and how you handled it?
- Please, describe your experience with infrastructure automation tools, like Chef, Puppet, or Ansible.
- Can you share your experience with different orchestration and containerization tools, like Kubernetes and Docker?
- How can you describe your level of expertise in cloud platforms?
- How do you ensure compliance and security of DevOps processes?
- Can you tell a bit more about your experience with monitoring tools?
- How do you track the performance of your applications and infrastructure?
- How do you manage to stay abreast of the latest DevOps trends?
Why hire DevOps engineers at JatApp
Competent DevOps engineers don’t roll on the road, so be ready to compete for them fiercely. Or you may simply turn to JatApp for some assistance.
With seven years of experience and 200 projects under their belt, our engineers know a secret sauce on how to make the lives of developers, operations teams, and quality assurance engineers more stress-free. Today, our gurus can build both reliable and safe environments with less friction. So, it’s not a coincidence that we have a 4.9 star on our Clutch page as well as lots of rave reviews from our clients.
Want to work with our DevOps engineers? Contact us today to start our cooperation.