"It'd be awesome to get developers at 50 percent of the price. The reality is that's not the market," says Dharmesh Shah, founder of an online marketing firm called Hubspot.
Shah says he's doing everything he can to attract software engineers — paying top salaries, making the workplace as fun as possible, including, he says, "the requisite startup beer fridge, Ping-Pong table and foosball table."
But it hasn't been enough. Hubspot still has almost a dozen software jobs posted right now. So it's offering a bounty for new hires.
"If you're out there and you know someone who would make a really good Hubspot employee, we're willing to pay you really good money — $10,000 — in order to refer that person to Hubspot," Shah says.
Those referrals, high salaries and amenities are all costs that consumers end up paying. Shah says the other downside to this tight labor market is not being able to staff projects.
"We've got 50 times more ideas, really good ideas that our customers would love that people are asking for, that just never make the cut simply because we're resource-constrained," he says.
Teach your children to program.