Inside Track: How to Find the Right Technical Talent
By Veanne Smith
Attracting and retaining top tech talent is a common obstacle that can be overcome with the right approach. According to a survey among hiring executives, conducted by the online job site Indeed, 86 percent of the respondents find it challenging to hire technical talent. Plus 56 percent admitted to having hired candidates that did not completely meet the job description or requirements, which is just as detrimental as not finding the ideal tech candidate at all.
Hiring tech talent without being a knowledgeable tech expert yourself can be difficult, but there are a few ways that will help you find the best person for the job without having to master techspeak. Using traditional recruitment methods where the hiring company is in the driver’s seat is not likely to bring in the top tech talent anymore, as the rules have changed. Techs are known for short employment duration, as opportunities continue to expand and more attractive benefit packages are offered.
In this article, we will share a few insights that will help you find the ideal candidate. With decades of tech recruiting experience, we are sharing our insider tips that will change the way in which you seek tech talent.
1. What Does Your Superman Look Like?
In other words, what does the top-of-the-heap super candidate look like? What specific skills do they need? What level of expertise would solve and further your company in the tech department? Have you had a thorough discussion with the parties who will be working with the new tech? Recruitment personnel does not always spend enough time thoroughly understanding the specific tech needs of the company, thinking the skills of IT professionals are basically the same. Yet there are software engineers, interface engineers, mobile developers, software developers in test, architects, and so many more. Specificity is critical.
What happens all too often is the person responsible for hiring is too busy with day-to-day operations to put a great deal of effort into the recruitment process. Many recruiters look for the most expeditious route to filling a position and often wind up copying and pasting an old job description or using one found online that is similar in nature.
In order to find the ideal candidate, there must be a crystal clear definition of the company’s specific needs followed by a compelling and unique job description that will attract the Superman.
2. Why Would Anyone Want this Job?
In years past, tech-seeking interviewers had the upper hand, as they were under the assumption, possibly rightfully so, that the interviewees desperately needed/wanted the job. Fast-forward to today’s world filled with tech talent who can easily job-hop when they aren’t challenged or appreciated because the demand for their skills exceeds the supply of talent.
Now the reverse posturing is true. Those who want to hire the right technical talent need to understand the importance of selling candidates on the overall benefits of the job. Therefore, before posting a job listing, or interviewing any candidates, ask yourself “why would anyone want this job?”.
- What is it about the position that will make it attractive to the type of tech talent your company needs?
- Is the salary commensurate with your competitors’ offerings?
- Is it a great working environment with unusually great benefits?
- Is the company growing and will there be room for advancement?
Once you have a solid list of answers for why anyone would want the job, you will be ready to “sell” as much as “interview”.
3. Make a Great Impression – Before, During, and After
Remember tech professionals are serious about technology, so it stands to reason that your company is going to be researched in advance. What do the online reviews reveal? How about past tech employees – what sort of insider information is being shared? Does the company have a footprint in the industry’s trades, published annual reports, or marketing that will surface from a search?
Additionally, many companies require the candidate to pass a tech test. It may seem counterintuitive to past hiring practices when this test was used to screen candidates in and out, but under current market conditions, tech professionals have choices. Many won’t even consider working for a company that will not have at least an introductory call to get a feel for the culture and opportunity.
Prior to the interview take steps to eliminate any potential distractions, such as cell phone calls, associate interruptions, and more. Stay attentive, focused, and demonstrate your desire to connect with the candidate to determine whether their skills and future career visions match the company’s requirements. Just as you expect the candidate to arrive on time, it will leave an unfavorable impression of your organization if you keep them waiting for you.
Equally important, get to know more about the candidate, their interests, hobbies, aspirations, and personality. Will they fit in with the rest of the team? Are they looking for a different type of company or position? The goal is to find the next tech Superman… do they fit the bill?
Tech candidates tend to be on the move, often inundated with opportunities. If you have serious interest in hiring a candidate, do not expect them to wait a month while the decision makes its way up the executive chain-of-command… particularly without being given updates. They may take a different opportunity without ever letting you know. Be proactive, act swiftly, and communicate regularly if you have found the candidate of your dreams!
Tech Recruitment Experts Can Help
Many of our clients lost time, and steam during past recruitment efforts without understanding the mentality and emotional aspects of the tech landscape, which is why they wind up seeking help.
Companies that specialize in tech recruitment are going to find your ideal tech professional candidates quickly and cost-effectively. They are pre-screened and entered into an applicant tracking system that can easily be searched by the appropriate skills, location, salary levels, industry expertise, and more.
At SOLTECH, we have an extensive network of talented tech professionals within every specialty and we speak tech so our recruiters can more easily identify candidates with the particular skills your company requires. If you haven’t gotten the best results from your past hires, consider handing over your HR duties to a company that specializes in tech recruitment.
We developed this downloadable guide that provides helpful pointers on how to find the best tech talent for your company’s need.
Veanne SmithCo-CEO & Co-Founder
Veanne Smith serves as the co-CEO and co-founder of SOLTECH – Atlanta’s premier software development, technology consulting and IT staffing firm.
Prior to founding SOLTECH, Veanne spent more than 10 years in the technology industry, where she leveraged her software development and project management skills to attain executive leadership responsibilities for a growing national technology consulting firm. She is passionate about building mutually beneficial long-term relationships, growing businesses, and helping people achieve their personal life goals via rewarding employment opportunities.
Outside of SOLTECH, Veanne is considered a thought leader in Atlanta’s IT community. Currently, she serves on the Advisory Board for The College of Computing and Software Engineering at Kennesaw State University. In addition, Veanne helped launch the AxIO Advisory Council, has been a member of Vistage for 20 years, and created Atlanta Business Impact Radio – a podcast that showcases some of Atlanta’s most innovative businesses and technology professionals.
As an influential figure in the technology and IT staffing industry, Veanne consistently produces insightful articles that address both the opportunities and challenges in IT staffing. Through her writing, she offers valuable tips and advice to businesses seeking to hire technical talent, as well as individuals searching for new opportunities.
She holds a degree in Computer Science from Illinois State University.