Junior Developers are better than Senior Developers

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Here are some reasons why junior developers are a better choice for companies than senior developers. (Original Article Posted Here)

Although it’s not totally accurate that companies hire junior developers more than senior developers. So it is tough to make a blank statement about junior developers being more likely to be hired vs. senior developers.

However, it is likely that the use cases for junior devs are overall higher in number. Here are a few common reasons companies may hire junior over senior programmers.

Money difference

Senior programmers are supposed to be getting paid more than junior programmers. Most employers don’t even call everyone for interviews as they filter out based on the last salary. A competent, talented, junior developer will have a more significant ROI than a senior. This is especially true for projects that both could implement. A smaller salary and being very productive allow for a greater return.

Senior developers generally are more expensive than their junior counterparts owing to more experience. So most of the time, if the company’s budget doesn’t allow for it, they might settle for the less expensive option and hire a junior developer, which is pretty common.

Pyramid structure

Most senior programmers are unfit for a pyramid structure. Most software companies aim to form teams with a pyramid structure with a maximum number of programmers in a low experience range with only 1–2 very senior programmers. This maximizes their operating margin.


Senior programmers are sometimes outdated. Senior programmers have fewer chances to take up new marketable technology compared to junior programmers.

Most companies believe senior programmers have reached their limit where a junior programmer is likely to go further.

Different types of skill sets

When it comes to skill sets, senior programmers are so experienced in certain areas that they wouldn’t bother to work on some work that they wouldn’t bother to do.

When there are a significant amount of monthly service contracts, companies perform basic content updates, feature request add-ons, troubleshooting, etc. Instead of having more experienced developers take on these tasks, companies assign them to junior-level developers.

That’s how senior programmers spend more time working on important projects instead of being worried about smaller time-consuming works which a junior can do.

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Junior engineers are more malleable. It’s easier to get them to follow best engineering practices like test-driven development than senior engineers who’ve gotten away with decades of bad processes.

Some managers use that for evil — it’s easier to get them to work unsustainable hours until they burn out. Products have many more tasks which are the ideal slight stretch for junior developers than very senior ones.

No Need for a Specialised Skillset

Senior developers are highly skilled in a particular technology and would have built that expertise over many years. However, many companies might prefer an individual with an excellent aptitude to pick up multiple technologies vs. a high level of knowledge in a particular technology. Seniority isn’t a metric in that case. In addition, junior developers are typically more open to working on new technologies and would be willing to pick up new skills.

Work is Primarily Small Task

Hiring a senior developer to complete smaller and less important tasks would be an inefficient usage of resources. Junior developers looking to build their experience and portfolios might be better suited to such situations. In contrast, senior developers would be more suited for high-level architectural or design work.

More flexibility

Junior developers can be taught and groomed to follow a company’s best practices more quickly than senior developers, who would have developed their own style of working. If the company is focused on developing their talent for the long-term, they might go for hiring junior developers.

Lack of Options

Even if the company prefers to hire senior developers, sometimes they might be forced to compromise due to the lack of senior quality developers on the market. Senior developers are rare to come by, whereas there is almost always an abundant supply of young developers.

Past Experience

Lastly, with the pace of development of technologies and new concepts, the relevant experience becomes more important than just the total amount of experience. In such a case, a relatively junior developer who has worked in a similar scenario on close use-cases becomes more valuable.

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Most college students start looking for a job while in college. So if companies identify a college student with high potential, they can contact them and are likely to interview the person.

By contrast, most of the great senior developers are very happy in their jobs and are not looking for work. And they usually will not respond to job requests because the good developers are getting a recruiter contacting them at least once daily.

So the inundation of interview requests makes them unlikely to respond to any request. That means you are unlikely ever to have a chance to interview a great senior developer as they may never become an active job seeker.


Getting good senior developers is not an easy task. And they are mostly already in a job and so happy with their work. Even finding one who is good and also the companies can afford is really hard. And even if the company finds one, they can’t make the senior one work extra hours. Because they know their worth compared to that, finding a junior programmer can be cheaper and more productive in some cases, which allows for a more productive culture.

What do you think is the reason for hiring more juniors instead of seniors?

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Introduction Hi – I am Spencer Thomason, founder of StartupHakk as well as other companies.  I love talking about the fundamentals of being a developer.  I have been a developer