According to CompTIA’s 2019 CyberStates report, the tech sector generated $1.8 trillion in 2018 — more than 10 percent of the total U.S. economy.
In cities like San Jose, Seattle, Austin, and Raleigh, tech revenue makes up more than 20 percent of the local economy.
Employment in the tech sector, the report says, is set to outpace national employment during between 2016 and 2026: 10.7 percent growth nationally versus 13.1 percent for tech occupations alone.
And even states less likely to be tech hotbeds are posting big annual numbers in tech job creation: In 2018, Utah saw a 4.3 percent increase in tech hiring, and New Hampshire saw a 4.2 percent increase.
But the outlook isn’t totally sunny: TechServe Alliance, the national trade association for the IT and engineering staffing and solutions industry, announced in August 2019 that IT hiring had increased just .06 percent year-over-year in 2019, an increase of only 3,000 “net tech workers” (a term that encompasses tech company workers in technical and non-technical positions, technical workers outside the tech industry, and self-employed technology workers).
There’s still growth in the sector, but it’s slowing. Analysts attribute this anemic growth to a talent shortage, which means businesses need to be savvier than ever in creating their talent-acquisition strategy to attract the field’s best and brightest.
How to attract top IT talent
Here are our top tips for bringing in the best talent the market has to offer.
Learn what employees want
Engaged employees are happy employees — and heading into 2020, a hefty salary definitely isn’t enough to attract or retain engaged, happy employees.
Compensation will always be a key factor for candidates — after all, ping-pong tables and nightly in-office happy hours don’t pay the bills — but other factors are quickly rising to the top of the best talent’s wish lists when seeking a new role.
What benefits did your best employees ask for when they started? Do you know what the market is currently dictating?
According to the Society for Human Resources Management’s Employee Benefits 2018 report, a whopping 72% of companies surveyed increased their benefits offerings in the previous 12 months to retain their best employees and snag top talent.
Companies that increased their benefits focused on the following:
A 2018 Justworks survey of employees discovered the employee benefits that candidates prioritized most when weighing the pros and cons of a job offer:
Get cultural buy-in on every role
Before the hiring process starts, every key player in your organization — from your top brass to direct managers and the HR department — should be in sync with a position’s requirements and duties.
Organizational dissonance around the role of a new hire can lead to confusion and delays during the interview process or, worse, bad hires.
It’s worth taking the time to solidify what you’re looking for in your top candidates and what they’ll be doing if they join you — even the best hire will sour quickly if they realize you weren’t clear on your expectations of them from the get-go.
Prioritize continuing education through upskilling
When talent shortages loom, businesses that have made big investments in developing a solid team need look no further than their existing workforce to meet their internal demands.
Benjamin Franklin said it best:
“An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.”
Upskilling, the practice of educating current employees on new skill sets, is increasingly prevalent in the tech world — and is a way to more effectively leverage talent that’s already been vetted and hired.
Investing in existing employees’ skills is one of the many ways to nurture and retain the talent you already have in place, an imperative when hiring new employees is harder than ever.
Upskilled employees will be more prepared to shift gears within their existing roles to do more specialized work, take on new projects in areas of strategic opportunity, and excel in their careers within your company. Learn more about upskilling and courses available for your workforce through Cognixia, a Collabera company.
Find a strategic partner
Navigating the highly competitive hiring landscape can be tricky, but by understanding the factors at play and taking a few tips into account, organizations will be able to quickly attract and secure the talent they need.
Need a strategic partner at the ready to offer innovative solutions to your workforce challenges? We help organizations of all sizes — from startups to Fortune 50 enterprises — create solutions at the intersection of business strategy and workforce strategy.
Thanks to our more than 16,000 employees in 70 offices around the world, our global team can work around the clock to get you results. Learn how we can help your enterprise.