5 ways to hire better tech talent

How do you go about hiring the best engineers and developers when there are countless openings but not enough people to fill them?

Hiring for technology openings is an extremely hard task at the moment, due to the fact that average engineers or developers can probably pick and choose where they want to go – because they are in high demand and companies are feeling the pressure to fill these roles. So how can you stand out and attract top tech talent?

Enable company-wide hiring:
Hiring shouldn’t only be up to the hiring manager and HR. Involving the entire company, especially the direct team involved, is crucial to get the most information about the job and the culture, to candidates. By enabling a company-wide hiring strategy you are also opening yourself up for possible internal and external referrals. This can be an untapped gold mine of talent, especially in the tech space, where friends and peers can refer one another. Start a formal referral program by looking at what will encourage your staff to put someone forward for a position. Think of motivators like internal recognition, a finder’s fee, or a day off. Treat this more like an internal marketing strategy, and less like an HR initiative, make it fun and competitive.

“Candidates are more likely to listen to their own network and their friends. Our employees are the ones who can most accurately vouch for what it’s like to work here. Employee referrals get us a lot further in the conversation than we otherwise would have.”- Steve Klingensmith, Recruiting Manager, Booking.com

Invest in your career website:
An attractive careers website gets immediate attention and you will instantly convert browsers into applicants. Use your career site to tell your business story, show what it’s like to work at your company, and see it as a powerful tool to give future employees the information they need to click apply. The way you hire is an immediate reflection of your brand, and by offering a data-rich, smart, easy to use career website, you are giving the candidate experience the attention it deserves.

When looking at your career website ask these questions:

  1. What sets your organisation apart?
  2. What makes your employer brand and corporate culture desirable?
  3. Are you showcasing the things that make your company distinctive and appealing?
  4. Is it mobile friendly?
  5. Do you have enough, clear ways for candidates to contact you?

Break down the barriers:
Transparency is such an essential part of successful talent acquisition, and by enabling your employees to get involved you are naturally offering a more transparent process. Talk about the technologies that your company works with, give your employees the chance to get involved, show your work environment, discuss your culture and how you operate. Transparency is also key in the interview process, so instead of sending out automated emails from company accounts, rather make a personal connection with your candidates. Keep them informed of where they are in the hiring process, be transparent and truthful – there’s nothing worse than sending an email that says “if you don’t hear from us within two weeks, consider your application unsuccessful”.

Diversify your strategy:
You can no longer rely on basic recruitment 101. There has to be diversity in your strategy. Look at traditional recruitment yes, but also consider sourcing, head hunting, direct emailing and messaging, and referrals. Make sure your career website and application process are mobile friendly, and also look at social media channels like Facebook where many younger people are going to for jobs rather than LinkedIn. For tech roles like developers, using industry specific platforms like OfferZen offers another level of finding people.

Train recruiters in business:
You can have the most attractive careers website, score brownie points with your application experience, showcase your culture perfectly, and interact and connect with the best talent in the business, but if your recruiters are not on the same page, you will lose everything you have worked for to get candidates. Companies need to train their recruiters, especially if they recruit for tech roles. They need to sell the role in a believable manner, they need to understand the tech and what it takes to work and code on these systems, and they also need to understand how tech fits into your business. Don’t assume that your recruiters are up to speed with the roles they are recruiting for, offer them training and information to fully understand the role and how they need to sell it.

It all ultimately boils down to candidate experience, and if you get it right and effectively use your candidate experience from applying for the role right through to the interview process and beyond, you have the power to positively influence the candidate and leave a memorable impression. If you offer a great candidate experience, you will always be remembered for it, so make sure to pull this through right to the job messaging, Hiring Manager interaction, the interview process, transparency after the interview process, making the hire, and onboarding the new recruit into your tech team.

Written by WP Strauss. For more information about our products and services, click here.

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