Hiring Tech Talent In A Candidate-Driven Market

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Hiring Tech Talent In A Candidate-Driven Market

The team at Greenlight Consulting has worked with dozens of hiring managers at companies looking to staff intermediate to senior level technology positions through a variety of market conditions. This experience has proven to be invaluable to our clients and candidates, as we have all tried to navigate the unique set of circumstances that contributed to the past two years. 

The Tech Job Market

Put simply, it’s a candidate’s market. There are not enough intermediate-senior level professionals to meet the new demand of companies looking to hire them. Since the start of the pandemic, we have also seen widespread adoption of work from home policies in addition to fully remote work opportunities, giving people even more positions to choose from when looking to make a career move. Video interviews also no-longer require candidates to take considerable time away from the office, resulting in the flexibility to take more interviews. All these factors have tipped the scales for job seekers putting the technology job market squarely in their favour, and companies struggling to retain employees and hire new talent.

How Companies Can Find More Success in Hiring

There are three categories that companies can focus on to help improve their success in hiring technologists: talent sourcing, the interview process, and the offer.

Talent Sourcing

When a job market is as competitive as the tech/software job market is in Toronto, the first area that hiring managers need to evaluate is how they identify and attract new talent. With so many companies hiring and professionals seeking new employment, it is not enough to post an opening to LinkedIn or Monster and wait for applications. The applications you will receive will be too hit-or-miss, and the volume of applications is likely to be too high to manage effectively. It’s not to say that you shouldn’t post jobs online, but rather that hiring managers need to add other talent acquisition resources to the mix to increase the number of quality applicants you review.

It is critical that hiring managers dedicate resources to actively target talent and drive interest to their company. There are many ways to do this, including being active on social platforms like LinkedIn, leveraging your network, hiring experienced Talent Acquisition people internally, or partnering with a specialized staffing consultant. The latter is a great option because a good consultant will be able supplement the resources your team already has, and increase the number of hirable candidate options you have access to. Recruitment teams generally are willing to explore a variety of fee structures, including contingent recruitment, meaning you pay for successful hires and can increase or dial back the amount of support you receive based on your hiring needs and budget.

The Interview Process

Once talent has been identified, the next areas that should be improved upon are the interview process and the time to hire. Job seekers are looking to join a team that is excited to hire them. One of the best ways to do that is to make the interview process more efficient and memorable. Good communication, quick responses, and clear interview steps are an easy way to do this. By contacting applicants within 2-3 days of their application and moving to next steps quickly, companies can easily differentiate themselves from other employers and keep candidate engagement high. The way companies treat applicants and interviewees during the process is an indication of the overall company culture and what it will be like to work for a particular employer. Make sure that the interview experience emulates how you treat your colleagues.

In my opinion, the most important aspect to finding success in hiring today is the time it takes from application to offer. From my experience, the ideal balance between efficiency and proper screening for a permanent hire is 2 or 3 interviews, wrapped up in 3 weeks. If a normal hire takes longer than 4 weeks, it’s taking too long and can be negatively impacting your ability to secure much needed experienced hires.

So why is time-to-hire so important? The answer is that in a job market that favours the candidates, a long screening and interview process often leads to missed hires as well as additional costs and delays. There are real costs to an inefficient interview process which can vary from business to business; however, I would like to highlight two that I believe are universal.

First, consider the time required for each person to interview candidates and what the productivity loss is for them to participate in interviews that don’t convert to hires. The second is the additional burden placed on existing employees to fill the gap created by a vacancy and the additional costs required to replace them should they leave. That additional workload is enough for some people to start looking for a new job themselves which can be devastating for a team already struggling to hire.

Keeping the interview process efficient is critical to keeping interest and enthusiasm high and will make a measurable difference when attempting to secure a hire before your candidate receives a competing offer.

The Offer

Once you have found and finished interviewing your ideal candidate, it’s time to present an offer. Offering competitive salaries is critically important to securing a hire, and while salary ranges do differ from company to company, it is important to review your compensation packages and to stay competitive. Every company should have regular reviews to make sure that their pay-scales are in-line with what the talent pool expects and have clear targets that employees can work towards to earn raises. This will help with new hires as well as retaining current staff who are constantly fielding emails from competitors looking to hire them.

Another tip is to consider when drafting an offer is what the package you are offering today will look like next year: “Will it be enough to stay competitive a year from now?”. Getting a “deal” today is just delaying the pain of re-hiring, increasing your team’s workload, and increasing recruitment costs.

Looking for a specialized staffing consultant to supplement your hiring team? Contact us!

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