Kraken Case Study
Kraken is a renowned cryptocurrency exchange, recognised for its reliability and security. Established in 2011, it has grown to become one of the largest global platforms for buying, selling, and trading digital assets. With a user-friendly interface and comprehensive security measures, Kraken offers a wide range of cryptocurrencies and trading options to cater to the needs of both experienced traders and newcomers.
Years ago, we began our collaboration with the smaller organisation Crypto Facilities. When Kraken acquired them in 2019, news of our successful partnership spread, leading to more opportunities within Kraken's engineering functions globally. Today, we stand as an essential pillar of Kraken's success story, shaping the future of the cryptocurrency industry together.
Kraken encountered significant challenges in their hiring endeavours, particularly in the realm of engineering talent acquisition. Initially, their needs were straightforward – they required a considerable number of engineers to meet the growing demands of the cryptocurrency industry. As their collaboration with us, Understanding Recruitment, expanded to encompass various areas like DevOps, Data, Testing, Product, Frontend, App Development, Python, and C++, the hiring processes encountered hurdles due to the lack of established protocols within the organisation. While the internal team at Kraken was talented and enthusiastic, they were still in the early stages of developing concrete hiring procedures, resulting in an ad hoc and reactive approach to recruitment. Given the sheer scale of their hiring requirements, this approach posed considerable challenges.
On the Java front, Kraken faced the difficulty of finding talent that met their high standards. As for Rust, the challenge was not only to identify skilled individuals but also to achieve the desired numbers quickly. Experienced Rust talent remained scarce and elusive, making the hiring process time-consuming and demanding. However, despite these challenges, Kraken and Understanding Recruitment shared a common commitment to maintaining high standards, ensuring that only top-notch candidates were considered for positions.
While other agencies initially attempted to assist with the hiring process, Understanding Recruitment demonstrated an unparalleled understanding of Kraken's needs and became a genuine partner and advisor in the project. As the collaboration with stakeholders across Talent Acquisition, HR, Engineering Managers, and Directors deepened, it became evident that our team grasped the nuances of Kraken's culture and requirements, making us an indispensable asset in securing the right talent. Although Kraken managed to make some hires internally, our support played a crucial role in meeting the pressing engineering requirements within the desired timeframe. As our relationship evolved, we not only fulfilled Kraken's immediate needs but also became a driving force in fostering a smooth and effective hiring process that allowed for continued growth and improvement.
By implementing pre-screening, introducing new tech test procedures, making interview process changes, providing training to internal members about the benefits of pre-close, and leveraging LinkedIn for marketing, we significantly enhanced and streamlined Kraken's hiring process.
Working closely with Kraken, we achieved remarkable results, with a total of over 150 successful placements across various engineering roles. The recruitment process covered a wide range of technology domains, and though timelines were dynamic with fluctuations in hiring needs, we adapted flexibly to accommodate these changes. Throughout our collaboration, we engaged with and thoroughly assessed thousands of tech talents, ensuring that only the most qualified candidates progressed through our rigorous screenings. Additionally, we oversaw hundreds of candidates completing challenging technical assessments and actively supported many individuals in upskilling, especially in emerging areas like Rust, where some candidates had never worked before. Our commitment to identifying top talent and assisting them in honing their skills contributed significantly to Kraken's ability to build a strong and capable engineering team.
Just some of the 150+ roles we filled for Kraken:
- Senior Frontend Engineer
- Senior Data Engineer
- Site Reliability Engineer
- Infrastructure Engineer
- Rust Engineer
- C++ Engineer
- React Native Developer
- C++ Developer
- Big Data Platform Engineer
- SDET – Python
- Java Developer
- Engineering Manager
- Golang Developer
- Node Engineer
- Software QA
- DevOps Engineer
- Java Engineer
- Graduate Java Developer
- Mifid Engineer
- Senior DevOps Engineer
- Full-Stack Developer
As a massive player in hiring Rust Engineers, Kraken's emphasis on this specialised talent pool further strengthened our collaboration. Our experience with Kraken expanded beyond their specific engineering requirements, and we ventured into various projects with other clients in the Rust space. This broader exposure allowed us to gain valuable insights and expertise, making us even more adept at identifying and securing top-notch Rust professionals for Kraken and other clients alike. As the Rust ecosystem continues to grow, we are poised to continue our fruitful partnership with Kraken, while also actively supporting other companies seeking Rust talent in this dynamic and evolving industry.
James and his team at Understanding Recruitment were a massive help to the Engineering and Security teams at Kraken during a scaleup in 2019 with the acquisition of CryptoFacilities (Kraken Futures) and up until my departure in early 2021. My team was massively understaffed at times and James/UR quickly became a trusted business partner that could understand niche crypto native platforms (rust in particular) and ramp up to new requirements in a fast moving, ever changing industry that is crypto. I also brought James/UR with me to the Pantera portfolio and he quickly became a trusted resource for the portfolio, in particular, L1/L2 protocols, NFTs, infrastructure and other Web3 startups. Not many internal recruiters in the Crypto space know the space, and James/UR can quickly add value to your crypto or open source development projects. James and his team are fun to work with, have a sense of humour, positive in times of growth, and provide much needed talent intelligence to your internal team as they have global expertise in the crypto talent landscape. James/UR and Kraken tech recruiting pre 2020 are crypto Rust OG's and have rare experience/knowledge other agencies completely lack to this day. If you need a professional that can save you time and money with top engineering/security talent and advice, particularly in the crypto space, reach out to James and the awesome team at Understanding Recruitment. They have a high bar for tech talent and always add value to your team.
Over the last 2 years, I have partnered with Cedric in both Kraken and Injective Labs, and in this time, he and his team have consistently hit the mark with above par candidates. As well as having an excellent understanding of the industry and the roles we hire for (Currently Go and Rust developers from the Web3 space, but previously front end and full stack in Web 2) Cedric also has an excellent understanding of the company and knows that not every excellent Go Developer will be a fit. This is where Cedric has the edge over other recruiters. He also is an expert in creating an incredibly smooth recruitment and offer process. For all of these reasons, I would highly recommend Cedric.
Cedric is great to work with! It was smooth sailing from the get go. Always open to feedback and very good market knowledge. Cedric's work helped achieve extremely high hiring targets while partnering strategically to adhere to high quality hiring standards. I recommend working with Cedric if you're looking for top notch Rust developers.