5 Mistakes Tech Managers Make When Hiring


If you’re serious about hiring the best tech talent today, you have to be both fast and smart. However, some tech managers are losing qualified candidates by making basic missteps in their approach to hiring. Don’t make the mistake of treating the process like a chore, or thinking all candidates are anxiously waiting for any employer that comes along. The truth is, today’s technology professionals are a dynamic lot, enthusiastic about their work and more than willing to wait for the right opportunity before making a move.

If you’re struggling to fill roles on your tech team, see if you’re making any of these mistakes:

1. Don’t Expect the Dream Candidate Yesterday

Chances are the tech pro you want is already working. Today’s tech unemployment rate has been hovering around a paltry 2 percent. For some jobs (such as Network, Systems or Database Administrators), the rate is less than 1 percent.

That means you have to determine whether your dreams are realistic. There’s no such thing as a developer with five years of Swift experience, after all. But there are plenty of veteran professionals who could pick up the language quickly and combine it with a more seasoned approach, so be sure to consider the whole package when you’re envisioning your ideal candidate. Skills and experience count, but so does the ability to learn and grow along with the position.

2. Provide a Clear Vision of the Role

If you can’t provide a clear description of the job and its requirements for success, you’ll have a hard time getting the attention of qualified candidates. Without that clear vision, a recruiter can’t deliver the types of candidates you need. Tech professionals need to know how the role fits into the firm’s tech team as well as the wider business, so paint a picture of an exciting role that matters.

An easy way to make sure you and your recruiter are on the right track is to review and complete a New Tech Hire Summary.

3. Don’t Expect a Top-Shelf Candidate At a ‘Sale Price’

When the labor market’s this tight, candidates expect to be paid well for their talents. And if their skills are in particular demand, they may be considering two or three job offers along with yours, so be ready to pay a premium for hot skills such as those related to Big Data, the cloud or nearly anything mobile. If your company’s located in a relatively remote area, you may still have to pay the kind of wages offered in major tech centers if you want to lure big-league talent.

4. Don’t Procrastinate

When smart companies find the right candidate, they move fast. From the tech professional’s perspective, there’s little reason to wait and see whether a better deal is coming when they’re already entertaining multiple offers. So do everything you can to streamline your hiring process: Review resumes promptly, schedule interviews right away and make sure HR’s up-to-date on your progress. Not only does this help counteract the efforts of competing employers, it shows the candidate that you’re serious about their potential and enthusiastic about their coming to work for you.

5. Don’t Have a ‘What Can You Do for Me’ Attitude

If you act as if the hiring process is all about making candidates prove their worth, they’re sure to hurry in the opposite direction. Instead, take advantage of every opportunity to sell them on what makes your company unique: the engaging culture, the perks, paid training, access to the newest tech and opportunities for advancement. Specialists in emerging technologies such as Cloudera Impala, Ansible and Xamarin can have their pick of opportunities. You’ll have to prove that a job at your company will do more for their careers than working somewhere else.

To attract the right candidates, tech managers must be realistic about the roles you’re trying to fill, ready to sell the advantages of their companies, and recognize that the job market has changed from where it was just a few years ago. Be proactive and engaged, and you’ll show tech pros you’re the kind of boss they want to work for.

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