“There are great engineers all over the world, and your company is probably fighting to get as many of them as possible. Supply doesn’t meet demand, so it’s important to do everything you can to help attract and retrain talent,” says Dion Almaer of Walmart Labs.


In a job market where developers are the equivalent of the hot young thing at a crowded bar, using open source can make a big difference in the talent your company attracts.

So says Dion Almaer of Walmart Labs in a Q&A with the todogroup. Almaer says the team stands on the shoulders of open source giants — thanks to the great people who worked on Linux and Apache and Node and JavaScript and PostgreSQL – making him “bullish” on open sourcing whatever he can.

One of those giants is OpenStack. Walmart Labs currently runs over 100,000 cores of OpenStack on its compute layer, leading one journalist to call it a “full employment act” for Walmart Labs engineers.


“One quick anecdote: a great engineer that I know well was recruited to work for a top-class company. They basically lost him when he was told that he would be working with an old Java stack and his workflow would not be git based. The tools matter,” he said.

Romancing the devs is can be just as tricky as romancing a mate, but open source can make finding common ground easier.

“An interview process is dating. It is hard to know if you want to marry after a date or two,” Almaer added. ”When you interview with a team that has open source at its core, you can hack together on issues in the queue and really get a feel for things. It is a fantastic advantage.”

Check out the full interview on the todogroup blog.

Cover Photo by El Neato; Flyer photo Jason Tester // CC BY NC