How to Find & Hire Ruby Programmers in 2021

Hiring tech talent is currently extremely competitive. You may struggle to find Ruby developers who are genuinely good and who haven’t just branded themselves as such.

Ruby developers are in high demand due to the popularity of the Ruby on Rails web development framework. Most of the top Ruby developers are either already employed or busy working on existing, well-compensating engagements.

This article looks at how you can find Ruby programmers who are both exceptional and available to work on your projects.

Oh, by the way, we’ve put all of our articles and resources on how to find and hire developers here.

What is Ruby programming used for?

The definition of the Ruby programming language is a general-purpose, interpreted, very high-level programming language (VHLL), created in the mid-1990s.

The main idea behind Ruby was to create a programming language that’s like writing computer instructions in plain English.

You can write functionality with just a few Ruby commands that would take many lines of code using high-level programming languages like JavaScript or PHP.

Ruby hides a lot of the inner workings of the programming language from developers. A Ruby programmer can write code quickly and easily. But Ruby code is difficult to debug. What’s going on behind the scenes of Ruby isn’t always obvious without referring to the language’s documentation.

Ruby is a general-purpose programming language. It can be used for many purposes, like data analysis, database manipulation, and web servers.

Developers mostly use Ruby for creating websites and web applications with the help of the Ruby on Rails framework.

What is Ruby on Rails used for?

Ruby on Rails is a web development framework.

Here is a quick explanation of web development frameworks in case you need a refresher:

A framework is a library of prewritten code. Frameworks are intended to speed up development of software applications. They make a new set of commands available to developers that trigger complex functionality that’s commonly needed for applications.

Developers use frameworks to spend their time creating new functionality rather than reinventing the wheel with each new project.

A web framework typically includes prewritten functionality for database access, form data validation, session persistence, the creation of website user interfaces, among other things.

Ruby on Rails is the most popular Ruby web development framework. Ruby on Rails lets Ruby programmers create full web applications by writing less code.

Websites built using Ruby on Rails include Airbnb, Hulu, GitHub, Kickstarter, and SoundCloud.

How much do Ruby developers make?

The cost of hiring a Ruby developer differs depending on whether you hire a full-time employee or a freelancer.

Cost of a full-time Ruby developer

The average salary of a Ruby developer in the US is around $77,000 or $30 per hour, according to PayScale. 80% of US Ruby developer salaries are between $53,000 and $118,000. You can find the average income of a Ruby developer in your country at PayScale.

Hiring a full-time Ruby programmer involves costs other than just salary, such as retirement and tax contributions.

Pros of hiring a full-time Ruby programmer

  • An employee learns your goals and values.
  • You can communicate more effectively with employees because they take the time to learn your communication tools.

Cons of hiring a full-time Ruby programmer

  • Employees can cost a lot to terminate if you’re not happy with their performance.
  • Employees expect you to provide them with software licenses and computer equipment.
  • You must pay an employee even when their workload is low.
Bored developer
You have to pay full-time developers, even if their workload is minimal

Cost of a freelance Ruby developer

Freelance Ruby developers are typically more expensive per hour than full-time employees. They need to pay for more expenses themselves, like equipment and tax contributions.

Freelancers charge more per project or per hour than you would pay an employee. However, you only pay a freelancer when you need them, and you don’t pay them when you don’t have any work for them. 

The average hourly rate around the world for a freelance Ruby on Rails developer is $81 to $100, according to Arc.

Pros of hiring a freelance Ruby programmer

  • You can pay a freelancer only when you have development work for them.
  • You can terminate a freelance contract easily.
  • Freelancers handle their own taxes and sick pay.
  • You can hire freelance Ruby developers of different skill levels rather than committing to one for every project.

Cons of hiring a freelance Ruby programmer

  • Freelancers can give up on your job for a more profitable one without notice.
  • A freelancer may work for multiple clients at once and might not be able to give your project the time that it needs.
  • Communication with a freelancer can suffer due to language barriers.
  • A freelancer may not follow documentation best practices making it difficult for other Ruby developers to work on the project at a later date.

Where can I find Ruby programmers?

Check out these great places to find Ruby programmers who are passionate and highly knowledgeable:

  1. CodinGame Sourcing
  2. Freelancer platforms
  3. Ruby developer communities
  4. Q&A websites
  5. Code repositories
  6. Social media
  7. In-person and remote networking

CodinGame Sourcing

Start your search for a Ruby programmer with CodinGame Sourcing. Unique matching algorithms find Ruby programmers of the highest quality who match your requirements.

Give CodinGame Sourcing a try for free.

Freelancer platforms

You can find tons of Ruby programmers on popular freelance job platforms.

Upwork and Freelancer are the two largest freelance job platforms today. Many Ruby developers on these platforms are entry-level. You’ll have to spend more time screening prospective Ruby programmers from these websites to find the truly good ones.

Toptal and TopCoder have a smaller selection of Ruby developers. All the freelancers on these platforms have already proven themselves to be excellent. You’ll pay more to hire using these websites but you’ll benefit from a shorter time-to-hire.

Other reputable freelancer platforms to check out are WeWorkRemotely, 10X Management, Guru, YouTeam,, and Codeable.

Ruby developer communities

Ruby developers hang out in discussion forums where they can learn from existing posts and post Ruby-related questions of their own.

Some of the best Ruby communities are GoRails, ruby-forum, and the Ruby on Rails forum.

Browse these discussions to find experienced Ruby developers with strong reputations. Reach out to them with your job opportunities.

Generic programming Q&A websites

Have a look at the Ruby sections of some generic coding question-and-answer websites, like StackOverflow. The Ruby sections are filled with Ruby experts.

Code repositories

GitHub is a public code repository where Ruby developers of all experience levels share their projects for everyone to see. Ruby enthusiasts vote for the most innovative and useful projects.

Take a look at GitHub’s trending projects page and filter by the Ruby programming language. Reach out to the publishers of the top projects. If the Ruby community regards their work highly, they’re more than likely a top developer.

Social media

LinkedIn should be your go-to social media platform for finding tech talent. 

Programmers on LinkedIn list their skills for other developers to endorse. You can trust that a programmer is experienced if they list their Ruby skills and other established developers endorse their skills.

In-person and remote networking

You can attract top Ruby programmers at Ruby-related networking events, like conferences. Stand out from the sea of recruiters at these events by doing something unusual.

Conference room
Conferences are a great place to meet potential developers

Put on a show. Doing the unusual will attract attention. You could set up a booth with an interactive experience, like a VR game, to get developers to come over and talk to you. Or you could go a step further: hire actors dressed as popular tech icons to walk around and promote your booth.

Some of the biggest Ruby conferences are RubyConf, Ruby Fuza, RailsConf, and RubyKaigi. You can see a list of Ruby conferences here. Make sure to call ahead if you want to set up a booth at these events.

You can also attend university and college events, like career fairs and talks. Speak to up-and-coming Ruby programmers who don’t even know just how in-demand they’re going to be upon graduating.

In-person networking events are unfortunately halted in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, you can source developers remotely using recruitment webinars, virtual career fairs, virtual information seminars, and online programming competitions (like CodinGame’s Clash of Code).

The 5 best places to find Ruby programmers

  1. Ruby conferences

There are countless Ruby conferences across the world that are packed with Ruby enthusiasts.

Popular conferences include RubyConf, RubyKaigi, RailsConf, Ruby Fuza, Euruko, WindyCityRails, and GORUCO.

Check the upcoming dates and locations for these conferences and book your tickets.

  1. CodinGame Sourcing

Top Ruby developers are in high demand. However, they don’t go around applying for jobs.

They work on their existing projects and wait for interesting new opportunities to come to them.

CodinGame Sourcing matches you with top Ruby developers according to your requirements. Get access to top talent today with a free trial of CodinGame Sourcing.

  1. GoRails

The Ruby developer community called GoRails consists of almost 40,000 Ruby programmers. Engage with the GoRails discussion forums to scout out the best, active Ruby developers on there.

Whoever is regularly active on the forums will be passionate about Ruby. They’ll be excited to work on your project if it’s unusual or innovative.

  1. Toptal

Toptal isn’t like other freelance job platforms. Toptal only accepts the best 3% of Ruby programmers.

You know that anyone you hire through Toptal has passed Toptal’s stringent acceptance tests, including completing a full Ruby project from scratch. You won’t have to screen developers that you hire through Toptal as thoroughly as those hired through other freelance sites.

You can even try out a Ruby programmer from Toptal risk-free for a trial period. You don’t have to pay them if you’re unhappy with their performance.

  1. LinkedIn

Most people looking for Ruby talent are looking on LinkedIn. Why? Because LinkedIn is a powerful tool for finding developers with the skills that you need.

You can gauge how much experience a developer has from the amount of endorsement they’ve received for their Ruby abilities.

You’ll need to send an attractive message to any Ruby developer with a solid LinkedIn profile to stand out from other recruiters. Make sure you look closely at their profile and personalize your message accordingly. Programmers will generally be flattered by your interest in their achievements.

Excellent Ruby programmers are hard to come by. Excellent Ruby programmers who are looking for work are practically non-existent!

You need to know the hotspots where Ruby programmers congregate, and you need an exciting project to attract their interest.

Any top Ruby developer will already be working on something. You just need to get them to divert some of their time to your projects.


There’s a better way to test coding skills.

Picture of Jon Holstead

Jon Holstead

Jon Holstead is a writer at CodinGame. Jon has previously worked as a software developer and CTO for both SaaS startups and larger tech organizations. He started his career in technology by earning a computer science Bachelor of Science degree from Durham University, UK. Jon has since built a multitude of ventures, including a property investment company and a business blog. Outside of work, Jon enjoys eating "pain au chocolat" and is a sucker for golden retrievers.