As the internet grows to include more and more of what the average person interacts with on a day to day basis, the number of people employed to support and expand this enormous network increases. Finding talented software engineers, designers, and sales staff is becoming more and more difficult, with armies of recruiters fighting over a pool of candidates that hasn’t kept pace with demand.
Skyrocketing salaries and constant job offers are excellent things for a potential employee, but force hiring managers into a bind. Fortunately, there are a few ways clever managers can rebalance the supply and demand pinch.
1. Be flexible.
Talented engineers, designers, and sales staff may not always have the exact skills you put on the ad. However, recruiters estimate that the recipe for an excellent fit is 80% personality and 20% talent. An employee who loves where he or she works, has the right personality, and enjoys learning will quickly take to the specific skills required to do the job.
2. Be supportive.
Training employees is a sore spot for many employers who hate lost revenue and fear that their investment will walk out the door in search of a higher offer. While these are both risk factors, they can be mitigated by promoting and training someone inside your organization. Chances are this person is already a good fit inside the company, and offering some training incentives can increase loyalty and reduce turnover. This also shows other employees that your company is vertically mobile and invests in employee success.
3. Hire and fire fast.
If you think an employee will do well with your company, extend an offer. Keep things probationary and move on with no hard feelings if the fit proves to be unsuccessful. Extensive interview processes are valuable in certain circumstances, but when top talent is in high demand luck favours the bold.
4. Embrace diversity.
Employees are demanding more flexibility and understanding when it comes to mixing work with their lives, and tech industry jobs allow that flexibility to increase the number of people who can work for you. Working while taking extra training, raising children, and travelling all allow different ages, genders, and educational levels to work comfortably where the traditional office environment would fail. With proper management, flexibility can be a powerful tool.
5. Go straight to the source.
Similar to the training risk, most companies are loath to hire new graduates for fear of nursing them through their growing pains only to have them leave at the earliest possible opportunity. While this is a real risk, creating an atmosphere that meets the needs of recent graduates (or even allows them to work while still in school) is a powerful way to build an internal talent pool to eventually promote inside your company. Even if turnover is high with this age group, snapping up extremely talented workers or exceptionally good fits before competitors get the chance makes it a risk worth taking.
Overall, executives responsible for hiring technology workers must realize that they can’t hope to compete with massive firms like Google or Apple on salary or benefits. Getting bold and getting creative are really the only ways to get ahead. Happy hunting!