5 Tips to Hire the Best Tech Talent
Pandemic-driven technology initiatives have created a talent war for advanced technical staff. This demand for skilled talent looks primed to continue as companies progress with digital transformation, cybersecurity, and cloud migration initiatives. CIO’s top 2022 initiatives include investments in artificial intelligence, cybersecurity mesh, data, and attracting and retaining diverse talent.
The intense competition for developers, architects, engineers, project managers, business analysts, data scientists, and other advanced workers will require C-Suite executives to re-think hiring strategies. Here are five ways companies can adapt to this environment.
The combination of low unemployment and high demand has resulted in technical specialist candidates receiving multiple job offers. Removing compensation from the discussion, how can organizations position their role as the best option?
- Restructure your interview to engage the candidate in the conversation. Skip the long list of questions and partake in an open dialogue centered around guiding points.
- Communicate the entire interview process in advance, including the number of rounds, style, location, and timing for a decision. Consider the candidate’s schedule when conducting interviews. Will they need to take multiple days off work? Will they get a break between consecutive interviews?
- Communicate frequently with the candidate. At no point should the candidate wonder where they stand – even if your team is still in the decision-making process. (Note: candidates aren’t waiting around these days. Act quickly!) Whenever possible, call the candidate.
- Share complete details and expectations of the role and environment. Be open about the challenges and opportunities offered within your organization and its initiatives.
- Be kind during the rejection process. Share why the candidate did not get the job. Offer ways for the candidate to improve their value in the job hunt.
A well-executed process can result in a candidate choosing your organization over a competitor. It also helps your brand as the candidate is more likely to refer peers to your organization.
Looking for a litmus test for your organization? Survey your recent hires. These three questions can provide valuable feedback:
- How would you rate the quality of communication you received throughout the hiring process?
- How could we have improved the candidate experience?
- On a scale of 1 (worst) to 5 (best), how would you rate your interview with (manager and/or Human Resources)?
The rise in remote work means companies no longer need to limit candidate pools by geographic location. It also means companies should pay employees based on the value they deliver to the company – regardless of geography. To hire the best available talent, conduct a thorough review of salary bands across multiple geographic locations and select a single salary band for each position.
Organizations as a whole have made significant progress in creating a diverse workplace. However, there is more work to be done. For this article, we will focus solely on the hiring process.
Refreshing the job description is an ideal starting point. Remove gendered language, jargon, and idioms. Add in your organization’s commitment to diversity and inclusion by sharing examples like company-wide initiatives and a reasonable accommodations statement. The latter to ensure candidates with mobility, vision, or hearing needs can participate.
Next, monitor your interview style. It’s natural to lean towards candidates who share similar traits. But, that’s a hurdle for diversity. First, focus on technical ability – remove names from resumes before sharing them with the hiring team. Then, look for candidates with different hobbies, associations, clubs, and volunteer activities. If your organization uses an applicant tracking system, enter keywords (black, Latino, women, PRIDE, etc.) to find candidates with unique experiences that add value to your team.
The rise of video interviews can create an uneven playing field for candidates who have limited private space, less than optimal lighting, or older technology. Train your team to identify this unintended bias to ensure it is not part of the decision-making process.
Review your interview questions with the team to keep questions fair and consistent across all candidates. One example is to rephrase “Have you done x?” with “How would you approach x?”
Lastly, provide a single test across all candidates. There are many online options available. Or, design your own to solve a challenge your organization is tackling today.
Successful organizations embrace diversity. The prevailing feeling is that a diverse workforce maximizes talent and creates new ways to solve problems, moving the organization forward.
A competitive talent market, combined with increased automation and limited emerging skill sets, has inspired some employers to invest in upskilling staff. Upskilling your employees allows them to spend more time on higher-value work, adding to the company’s bottom line. It also serves as a valuable employee retention strategy.
Identify the skills gap within your organization associated with current and planned automation and digitization initiatives. Be sure to include technical, analytical, and soft skills.
To get started, consider:
- What are your goals for an upskilling program?
- What are your expectations for the staff (select team members or all of them) to learn a skill(s)?
- Create your program: content, software integrations, duration, location, and instruction
- Identify a target business outcome
- Budget, staff, build, and execute!
Organizations are evaluating flexible staffing options, including contractors and staffing agencies. Contractors, also known as contingent labor, enable a business to rapidly scale up or down in response to demand. Contractors offer specialization to drive innovation, develop better products or services, and provide a sensible means to fill a talent gap or replace a departed employee.
Additionally, experienced contractors generally acclimate faster to a new environment. Reducing ramp-up time helps projects stay on schedule. The long-held notion that contract talent would lead to culture problems is rapidly dissipating as employers see success with seasoned contractors in a remote or hybrid work environment.
We hope this article will spur some ideas for your organization. Every organization is unique and your objectives will vary. Talk internally, identify your goals, do your research, and make a plan!
Delphi-US is your Peacemaker in the Talent War. We partner with clients to artfully navigate the complexities of the United States IT and Professional marketplace. Our mission is to deliver the best contract and direct hire talent our nation offers.
Our process begins with a genuine alignment of client hiring initiatives. We discuss client recruiting efforts and identify areas for improvement. Skill gaps are reviewed by assessing the current mix of technical and cultural staff, and ideal staff creation.
In our model, clients identify specific jobs to fill. Delphi-US helps fill them by presenting the talent that suits their ideals. The outcome is a more efficient hiring process, with a better spectrum of candidates to consider. The talent that lands – technically the best and brightest our labor market presents – helps deliver upon client business goals.