June 20, 2024


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How To Use GitHub Advanced Search For Recruiters

The need for tech expertise is significant, but the pool of skilled candidates is in limited supply. It also doesn’t aid that unemployment is reduced, as it additional narrows down your talent pool and can make it harder to find excellent workforce. 

With level of competition for tech talent superior, you are very likely hunting for new and impressive techniques to detect, draw in and recruit outstanding tech specialists. This short article will assist you do just that by detailing a exceptional sourcing tactic, Github advanced look for. You will find out what Github is as very well as why and how you should resource tech experts from the platform.


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Table of Contents


What is GitHub?

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GitHub is a cloud-dependent social sharing site. In its place of sharing daily life updates, position postings or shots, nevertheless, GitHub end users share code. The system runs on an open-supply framework, that means the code is open to the standard community and can be altered by anybody. The alterations are tracked via the platform’s Git revision manage process (hence the title GitHub), so buyers can see how code variations from its first variety. 


Why Recruit on GitHub?

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In this working day and age, just about each company requirements specialists with coding, building or programming encounter. No matter whether you are updating your company’s website or developing an application, you will need application engineers and program developers — both of which are some of the most in-demand roles in the position market. 

Employers will need to get additional strategic with their sourcing methods if they want to defeat out the competition and catch the attention of top rated software engineering expertise. Since tech experts have countless job options, they’re not actively searching for positions or updating their electronic resumes. They are also not going to respond to the lengthy list of recruiters making an attempt to hook up and get them to apply.

As a substitute, for all those really hard to seek the services of complex roles, you have to have to fulfill talent on the platforms they recurrent. For most software package engineers and developers, that platform is GitHub. 


How to Recruit with GitHub State-of-the-art Search

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In purchase to come across great application engineers and developers on GitHub, you to start with need to recognize how the platform performs and what to glance for. Start off by creating an account on GitHub that features data on your corporation.

In addition, generate a applicant persona so you know what to glimpse for through your look for. Your candidate persona should really involve information like location, encounter, training, programming language and techniques.

Identical to other social sharing sites, GitHub end users have profiles with the following data:

  • Standard: Title, Location, Day joined, Tackle (or monitor name)
  • Experienced: Job title, Employer, Education and learning, Competencies, Web-site, Make contact with information and facts
  • Community activity
  • Followers/Pursuing
  • Forks (code which is been copied)
  • Resources (first code from person)
  • Stars (GitHub’s variation of likes)

GitHub profiles also include things like a calendar graph of when and how lots of contributions a consumer has designed to open supply code in the prior yr.

Also, there is a area referred to as repositories, or “repos”, which are places on the system where by open-supply improvement jobs or computer software packages are saved. On a user’s profile, you can see which repositories the consumer has worked on and how a great deal their get the job done has been starred or forked. Repositories give you insight into what languages and abilities a consumer has demonstrated, which is significantly much more useful than bullet factors on a resume. 




Look for for Candidate Personas

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Repositories are a goldmine for recruiters browsing for certain information to locate aptly skilled experts. Based on what you are on the lookout for, GitHub breaks down a assortment of research inquiries and how to use their site to slender down your results.

Once more, your prospect persona will assist you establish what you want in your next application developer or engineer, so make absolutely sure you entire that very first. Below are the most popular methods to research for customers by standards on GitHub

  • Language
  • Amount of followers
  • Range of forks (copied code)
  • Variety of stars (likes)
  • Subject matter or number of subject areas
  • License
  • Repository dimension, title, description, or contents of the README file
  • Inside of a user’s or organization’s repositories
  • Research centered on the contents of a repository
  • Lookup centered on whether or not a repository is a mirror
  • Look for based on regardless of whether a repository is archived
  • Research based on the variety of troubles with superior very first issue or enable required labels

Based on your look for metrics, you can reorganize the search outcomes you get by greatest match, most followers, fewest followers, most lately joined, least recently joined, most repositories and fewest repositories. Even though it may perhaps seem to be counter-intuitive to obtain people with number of followers or repositories, if you are wanting for a junior software engineer, this can be valuable to come across people today new to the industry.


Narrow Down Major Candidates

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As you start out to discover industry experts that resonate with your group and replicate the applicant persona you designed for the role, you can start off narrowing down your options even more by searching for extra unique requirements, these as:

  • Area (area:chicago)
  • Techniques (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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