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Engineering leadership | Blog Post

2023 Insights Report – Latest Software Engineer Career Trends

Wes Mitchell-Lewis

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Terminal’s State of Remote Engineering Report is back for its 4th year, with insights from 1000+ software engineers on how economic uncertainties have affected their teams and what they believe leaders can do to better support them during this difficult time. Plus, hear what insights software engineers share about remote work, benefits, and what companies can offer prospective employees.


Colorful decor, ping pong tables, and endless snacks were, at one point, the dream of every employee. Huge offices reigned, and tens of thousands of developers commuted back and forth daily if they did not pull an all-nighter, coding.

This was the pre-Covid reality for tech employees. In order to add big-name companies to their resume, they sacrificed their work-life balance in exchange for perks and benefits designed to keep employees at the office for as long as possible.

But, when 2020 kicked off a global pandemic, it shifted everyone’s approach to workplace flexibility.

These shifts over the last three years have changed the landscape for employees and companies, alike. Gone are the days when a company can simply throw a signing bonus or t-shirt & coffee mug at a new hire and expect absolute fealty in return. Employees are in the driver’s seat more than ever, requiring companies to lean into what employees want – flexibility, development opportunities, compensation, and benefits, amongst other things.

While pay is still top-of-mind for engineers, there are other factors that attract them to one company over another with 25% of engineers citing stability and 21% citing exciting work as swaying factors. 

2022 ushered a year of uncertainty with markets rising and falling. Economic uncertainties became widespread and the tech industry has been hit especially hard regardless of the size of the company. During the past year, 68% of engineers experienced negative impacts at their company including hiring freezes, budget cuts, layoffs, and low morale.

These negative impacts have had a ripple effect on those that remain in an organization. 36% of engineers feel that the shortage of engineers in their organization prevents technical development and another 39% feel it leads to being overworked.

All of this is responsible for more than half (52%) of engineers saying they plan to begin a job search in 2023. They cite higher salaries, more interesting challenges, remote work flexibility, and burnout as the main motivation driving their dissatisfaction with their current roles.

With so many engineers looking to make a career change, companies should ensure they have an organized, efficient, and effective interview process in place. Engineers have cited numerous issues with the interview process, including too many rounds, long delays, disorganization, and a lack of understanding of the role requirements. Only 2% of respondents say they did not experience issues with the interview process.

But, all of this also leads to a significant opportunity.

The opportunity to build stronger and leaner teams, sourcing the best talent from around the world. Over 80% of engineers say they would like to work remotely most of the time. A company that can align with the wants of engineers, especially when it comes to remote work, is going to find itself having the pick of the litter out of the talent pools that exist in places like Canada, Colombia, Spain, Poland, Mexico, Costa Rica, Chile and more.

Now’s the time to listen to your people – and get creative about how you can support them. Even in times of change, struggle and uncertainty, there exists the opportunity to build a better future for your company.

Clay Kellogg, CEO at Terminal

This year’s tech troubles will leave lasting ramifications on both employees and employers. These insights are meant to inform and educate – providing in-depth background to the opinions and experiences of global engineers.

As we kick off 2023, leaders who can learn and make lasting adjustments in the New Year will see their companies reach new heights because they have the right people to bring them there.

Download the full 2023 State of Remote Engineering Report today for more insights!

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