Challenges Facing IT Hiring in 2018
In today’s workplace, hiring managers face many hiring related challenges. In the Information Technology field, this is especially true. Here we will touch on challenges that we see as key in hiring Information Technology staff.
Workloads on the Increase
First, as technology become increasingly important for businesses to survive, and compete, new technology areas are sought after. The result is increasing information technology workloads. The increasing workloads require managers to either increase the work demand on existing staff, or to expand staff to meet this increasingly growing demand. New technologies such as AI (Artificial Intelligence) is an example. Also BI (Business Intelligence) is also a growing demand, to provide the necessary data, the right information to the right people, at the right time. All increase demand on IT.
Second, in lieu of adding demand on existing staff, companies may go out and hire additional staff. The market today is markedly different from just a few years ago. The demand for staff is high and the availability of IT professionals has decreased as a result.
What does this mean for the hiring manager? Well first of all, there will be a shortage in skilled professionals. What is the impact? Well the competition will be high for those skills. Companies must compete today for the skills, much more so than in recent memory.
IT professionals can essentially pick from the best companies. They can be choosy about who they work for, and where they accept work. This is dramatically different than 6-8 years ago. Companies that are struggling to provide competitive salaries and a professional quality work environment will find the going tough to find qualified staff.
In many cases the alternative to hiring full time perm staff will be to contract staff on a temporary and project based basis. Many quality IT professionals are now available by contract. The contract or project based work allows for IT professionals to further pick and choose the best options. Additionally the company can choose from experienced IT professionals. This is a win-win for both company and IT professional.
Types of Projects and Cutting Edge Technology
IT professionals today give strong consideration to the types of projects they will be working and whether the technology is relevant and cutting edge. Companies that have lagged behind in their technology will find the going tough to fill positions with qualified staff. Why is this important? With the rapidly changing technology landscape, IT professionals become irrelevant in short order. I’ve seen where a company did not change any of their technologies for over ten years. The staff there were maintaining existing systems, but were out of touch with current technologies, and methods. Today people are giving strong consideration to projects and cutting edge technology before accepting a new position.
Flexible and Creative Working Environment
Creativity and flexibility are also important to IT professionals. Environments that are rigid in their approach to work, lacking in flexibility of work schedules, and work methods, will not compete for top talent. A manager recently allowed for IT staff to have the flexibility of working late, and coming into the office later, and vice versa. Oftentimes staff were called at home, and worked during the night. Thus they were allowed the flexibility of a delayed office arrival the next day. Some in HR management did not agree with this approach. HR preferred an approach that was more aligned to clocking in and out. This approach was a stumbling block to hiring quality IT staff.
One must be flexible to get the best from the best. Allowing for some creativity in the work approach and work environment often leads to increased productivity and improved results. Again to compete for top talent, flexibility and creativity in the work environment is a MUST HAVE.
Many challenges face hiring managers. These are but a few, but a critical few. If addressed as part of the staffing challenge, they can and will lead to improved results in landing top IT talent.