Attracting top talent
What can a self-funded company do when competitors are much larger and infinitely better funded?
Demand for top talent, especially experienced software developers, is constantly growing. Why would someone choose your small company instead of having enormous salary and a ton of benefits (including prestige) working for a FAANG?
You can't match what FAANG offers, but also - FAANG can't match what you can offer.
In large companies it can be expected you are always available, especially with power games and internal politics. In funded startups founders may be inexperienced, creating a chaotic and workaholic environment.
We work 8am-4pm. It's not a very strict rule, but we tend to work exactly at that time as it is proven you end up having more free time with well defined work hours. Nobody is contacted after 4pm, ever.
We work Mondays to Thursdays. When there is a crunch, we bleed by working Fridays. This happens a few times a year and is paid extra.
I asked one of my developers once if he would like to work Fridays for a 25% raise. The answers was a firm No.
We are a fully remote company from day one. Most people love working from home, which becomes a norm. Companies should pay for the coworking space - not everyone has an extra room at home, or peace and quiet.
Salaries in software are very good everywhere, and top talent is motivated by interesting work as much as salary. One of our developers took a significant pay cut in order to come and work with us!
Verifying skills and culture fit
I have discovered that TestDome.com results highly correlate with skill. All the developers I don't know personally are being tested with it.
Culture fit is nuanced, but here is the gist of it: if a person is nice, communicative, and really loves what you are working on, it's a go.