June 25, 2024

Pierreloti Chelsea

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How To Use GitHub Advanced Search For Recruiters

The demand from customers for tech talent is significant, but the pool of competent candidates is in shorter supply. It also does not help that unemployment is lower, as it even further narrows down your talent pool and helps make it harder to locate excellent staff members. 

With competitors for tech talent superior, you’re probable wanting for new and innovative methods to determine, attract and recruit fantastic tech experts. This write-up will assistance you do just that by describing a special sourcing tactic, Github highly developed look for. You will understand what Github is as properly as why and how you must resource tech industry experts from the platform.


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Desk of Contents


What is GitHub?

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GitHub is a cloud-based mostly social sharing internet site. Instead of sharing existence updates, job postings or photographs, even so, GitHub consumers share code. The platform runs on an open up-source framework, this means the code is open to the common community and can be altered by everyone. The improvements are tracked by means of the platform’s Git revision manage method (as a result the name GitHub), so consumers can see how code improvements from its initial type. 


Why Recruit on GitHub?

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In this day and age, just about just about every organization requirements experts with coding, establishing or programming practical experience. Whether you are updating your firm’s internet site or making an application, you require computer software engineers and application developers — both of those of which are some of the most in-demand roles in the occupation sector. 

Businesses have to have to get more strategic with their sourcing strategies if they want to beat out the competition and entice prime computer software engineering talent. Simply because tech specialists have countless position prospects, they’re not actively searching for positions or updating their digital resumes. They are also not likely to answer to the prolonged listing of recruiters hoping to join and get them to use.

In its place, for those hard to hire specialized roles, you want to meet up with expertise on the platforms they recurrent. For most computer software engineers and builders, that platform is GitHub. 


How to Recruit with GitHub Highly developed Research

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In get to obtain wonderful software program engineers and builders on GitHub, you to start with need to comprehend how the platform operates and what to glance for. Start off by building an account on GitHub that incorporates data on your business.

Moreover, develop a candidate persona so you know what to appear for in the course of your research. Your applicant persona should include information and facts like area, encounter, instruction, programming language and techniques.

Identical to other social sharing internet sites, GitHub consumers have profiles with the following info:

  • Typical: Name, Spot, Date joined, Take care of (or display screen name)
  • Expert: Position title, Employer, Education, Skills, Website, Speak to information
  • Public exercise
  • Followers/Adhering to
  • Forks (code which is been copied)
  • Resources (initial code from user)
  • Stars (GitHub’s edition of likes)

GitHub profiles also incorporate a calendar graph of when and how numerous contributions a consumer has built to open resource code in the prior year.

Additionally, there is a section identified as repositories, or “repos”, which are areas on the platform exactly where open up-supply growth tasks or application deals are saved. On a user’s profile, you can see which repositories the user has worked on and how considerably their function has been starred or forked. Repositories give you insight into what languages and skills a user has shown, which is much additional instructive than bullet factors on a resume. 




Lookup for Applicant Personas

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Repositories are a goldmine for recruiters browsing for distinct information to obtain aptly skilled experts. Dependent on what you’re on the lookout for, GitHub breaks down a variety of research inquiries and how to benefit from their web page to narrow down your results.

Again, your prospect persona will help you ascertain what you require in your next computer software developer or engineer, so make guaranteed you entire that very first. Listed here are the most prevalent methods to research for buyers by standards on GitHub

  • Language
  • Amount of followers
  • Selection of forks (copied code)
  • Amount of stars (likes)
  • Subject or amount of matters
  • License
  • Repository dimensions, identify, description, or contents of the README file
  • Within just a user’s or organization’s repositories
  • Research based mostly on the contents of a repository
  • Lookup based on regardless of whether a repository is a mirror
  • Search centered on no matter if a repository is archived
  • Lookup centered on the variety of difficulties with good to start with situation or enable wanted labels

Relying on your lookup metrics, you can reorganize the look for benefits you get by most effective match, most followers, fewest followers, most not long ago joined, the very least lately joined, most repositories and fewest repositories. Though it might appear to be counter-intuitive to uncover persons with couple followers or repositories, if you happen to be wanting for a junior software package engineer, this can be useful to uncover folks new to the subject.


Slender Down Top Candidates

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As you commence to determine experts that resonate with your group and replicate the prospect persona you developed for the role, you can start out narrowing down your options even further by looking for extra precise conditions, such as:

  • Area (location:chicago)
  • Expertise (language:ruby)
  • Followers (followers:<100)

On the profiles that stand out, make sure to take note of important information on their profiles, like:

  • Name 
  • Job title
  • Email
  • Website
  • Public activity

Additionally, you can use Boolean search tactics on Google to further narrow your search on GitHub. Boolean search is like a DIY version of advanced search fields, and using Boolean search in recruitment saves time sourcing candidates, ultimately reducing your cost-per-hire.

Let’s break down some examples of how to use Boolean search to find information on Github. 


You can search for results on a specific website by entering the URL: or site: Boolean search operator to target specific candidates on GitHub (or any other site for that matter). You can use this search to narrow down candidates by keywords, like their job title, current company, location, skills and language. 

Boolean Search Example

  • site:github.com software AND (engineer OR developer) AND ~resume -job -jobs -hire -hiring

*Do not include an extra spacing between operators. Follow the format above exactly.

This is an example of a search query for someone looking for:

  • Candidates on GitHub (site:github.com) 
  • Who are software developers or software engineers (AND (engineer OR developer))
  • Who have a resume or something similar (~resume)
  • And wants to exclude any job postings (-job -jobs -hire -hiring)



You can also utilize Boolean search tactics to search GitHub for resume pages or links within a website. Candidates often create websites with digital portfolios and professional documents. Such documents are often uploaded under a file name that includes “resume” or “CV.” Use the following search string to locate those downloadable documents on GitHub.

Boolean Search Example

  • site:github.com (inurl:resume OR inurl:CV) software AND (engineer OR developer) -job -jobs -hire -hiring

*Note: intext: searches the body text of a web page, whereas inurl: searches within a URL.

This example is for recruiters who are looking for:

  • Candidates on github (site:github.com) 

  • With a downloadable resume or CV ((inurl:resume OR inurl:CV))

  • Who are software developers or software engineers ((software AND (engineer OR developer))

  • Excluding any job postings (-job -jobs -hire -hiring)


Connect with Candidates 

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Once you’ve identified a few prospective candidates you want to pursue, do your due diligence and learn as much as you can about them before connecting. Go onto other social platforms and search their name to see where they’ve worked and what projects they’ve worked on. The more information you gather, the more personalized your message can be, and the better chance you’ll have at standing out from other employer inquiries.

Consider the projects they’ve worked on in the past and inform them of similar or more challenging projects your job opportunity has to offer. If you know their interests, you can identify how they will add to your company culture, and you can share elements of your culture that will entice them to take a closer look at your company.

Most profiles have a public email address so you can reach out to candidates and add them to your talent pipeline. Even if they’re not interested in your job opportunity now, it doesn’t mean they aren’t interested in your company altogether. You can always ask them to join your talent community so they can hear about open positions in the future.

In the event that they are interested in pursuing your offer, prepare your team for how to handle salary negotiations. In a candidate driven market where tech talent is scarce, these candidates know they’re in high demand and will wait around for the best opportunity. Having a solid negotiation strategy will make sure you’re prepared to meet the candidate’s expectations while staying within your budget for the role. 



GitHub is one of the best resources out there for companies looking to find exceptional tech talent. All it takes is a little learning and adaptation to optimize your search tactics on their website. Once you get in the swing of things, you’ll become faster and more efficient at finding the specific candidate personas your team needs to drive business and boost your culture. Continue to grow your tech recruiting expertise by brushing up on additional tech recruiter resources


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