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Hire Great Technology Talent
Prerna Rajan
Prerna Rajan Updated on Feb 23, 2024  |  5 Min Read

As technology continues to revolutionize industries across the board, companies, big and small, are aggressively looking to hire top tech talent. The demand for roles such as data scientists, cybersecurity specialists, cloud computing experts, project managers, and IT architects continues to grow steadily. In fact, software development ranks amongst the most in-demand work profiles, as highlighted in the annual ranking of the best jobs released by US News in 2024.

Nevertheless, the supply of professionals with the requisite technological expertise remains a challenge. According to IDC, the world’s leading market intelligence firm, there will be a shortfall of nearly 4 million developers by 2025. Additionally, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that almost 200,000 developer positions will need to be filled each year through the end of the decade.

Hire Technology Talent

It’s worth noting that most software developers are “passive candidates”, who already have a job and are not proactively looking for a switch by posting their CVs on job portals. So, is there any hope then for CTOs, CIOs, and product development managers to address this challenge, and ensure a healthy supply-demand balance? Yes, undoubtedly. As per the latest survey conducted by Stack Overflow, a whopping 79% of developers are keen on hearing about new job openings, even if they are not actively searching.

How To Hire Tech Talent

How can you then hire top tech talent and retain them, as your organization aims to accelerate its digital transformation journey? Here is a set of best practices to help you achieve this objective:

1. Define Your Ideal Techie “Persona”

Defining an ideal developer “persona” is essential for you to understand the aspirations and needs of the people you will interact with. Doing so will help you have a clear idea of what you seek in your ideal developer for a specific opening, and accordingly filter, curate, and shortlist potential candidates for the role.

The Stack Overflow survey, covering more than 100,000 developers worldwide, offers some tangible pointers in this regard. For instance, around 43% of the professional developers are between 25-34 years old, with over 5% employed part-time. Also, nearly 48% have less than ten years of coding experience, the survey revealed.

2. Understand What Developers Want

In order to attract the right people to your organization, it’s essential to have a granular understanding of their needs, aspirations, and deal breakers in a working environment. For instance, recent studies have shown that for many developers, compensation and benefits offered by potential employers rank among the top priorities. However, it’s not just about the paycheck. Most tech professionals also emphasize the technologies and domains they will be working on as they are eager to hone their skills in cutting-edge technologies and contribute to projects that align with their interests and career goals.

To capitalize on these insights, organizations must tailor their recruitment strategies for different tech openings. This may involve highlighting competitive compensation packages, showcasing exciting projects and opportunities for skill development, and emphasizing the organization’s commitment to fostering a supportive work environment.

3. Scout for Talent in the Right Places

Given most developers don’t actively seek job opportunities, they won’t be posting resumes online. The onus, therefore, lies upon you to reach out and engage with them in innovative ways. So, when hiring tech talent, it’s recommended that you target places such as online developer community forums (Stack Overflow), code repositories (GitHub), and technology blogs, where tech enthusiasts and professionals interact with each other for knowledge sharing.

Freelance websites are another place where techies hang out, as they look to pick up new skills and make some extra bucks by participating in the gig economy. You could also hunt for talent by participating in tech meetups, conferences, and career fairs that attract university graduates as well as skilled professionals.

4. Throw a Challenge to Developers

Techies love challenges, and hackathons and similar coding events present great opportunities for them to assess themselves against peers, and showcase their skills. Prominent companies, including Airbnb, Quora, and Stripe, have started organizing such events regularly to nurture their resource pool and generate qualified leads for hiring technical talent. Hosting hackathons also helps enhance their reputation as organizations deeply committed and passionate about software development.

5. Treat Your Employees as Brand Ambassadors

Software developers are a vibrant, tightly-knit community where talent recognition often comes from within. Leveraging this community and tapping into your existing employee base can be a game-changer in your recruitment strategy. Recent data indicates that employee referral programs are gaining traction as one of the most effective methods for attracting top-tier talent.

The beauty of employee referral programs lies in their ability to bring in candidates who are not only skilled but also trustworthy and verified. By instituting robust employee referral programs, organizations can tap into this rich pool of talent, harnessing the power of their existing workforce to scout for new recruits. Incentivizing employees to refer qualified candidates not only builds a sense of ownership and engagement but also strengthens internal networks and camaraderie.

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Hire Software Developers

6. Leverage High-Impact Recruiting Technology

Relying on conventional HR systems alone to hire IT professionals won’t suffice anymore. In the age of WhatsApp, Facebook, and Snapchat, leveraging social media channels and other emerging apps and tools is a must for any recruiter looking to hire technology talent. For instance, Textio, an AI-driven platform that analyzes words and phrases, and predicts how people will respond to them, is now being used by some organizations for IT recruitment. Similarly, a few organizations are communicating with their target audience on platforms such as Glassdoor, responding to reviews posted by current as well as former employees.

7. Hire People With the Right Attitude

“Culture eats strategy for breakfast,” these prophetic words of advertising legend Peter Drucker remain relevant even today. No matter how talented and exceptionally bright the people you hire are, they will not create value for you if they don’t fit into your organization’s culture. And, that’s where attitude plays a vital role.

While screening and interviewing candidates for your software development company, look for applicants whose core values and aspirations align, in some ways, with those of your organization. Someone may be less talented than your “ideal” profile, but they could well make up for that if they have the right attitude to unlearn and learn in a fast-changing world.

Many traits that make up a great employee can’t be found on a resume. Along with the core skills and expertise required to do the job, also consider traits such as motivation, drive, and a hunger for learning new skills when assessing candidates.

8. Make Social Media Work For You

As per the latest statistics, organizations that incorporate marketing principles into their recruiting strategies are more likely to attract top-notch talent. Social recruiting is one of the hottest trends that utilize social media platforms such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Glassdoor, and Facebook to advertise jobs and engage with potential candidates. It’s an effective way of finding passive candidates, therefore, it’s critical to strategically leverage social recruiting to maximize its impact.

Wrapping Up

Talent recruitment and retention will clearly be one of the biggest factors in determining the winners and losers in the digital era. As you pursue your ambitious digital transformation initiatives, and seek to hire technology talent for your organization, you should embrace newer and innovative ways of recruiting people, engaging with them, and keeping them motivated.

Technology will play a key role on this front, but at the end of the day, it’s all about people and how you help them get better at what they do. Technology is an awesome facilitator – but it doesn’t replace us and the connections we make person-to-person.

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