Why is Finding Tech Talent So Hard?

Searching With Binoculars

Startups are launching business strategies, creating jobs, and trying to hire new employees. But why is finding tech talent so hard?

Eighty three percent of startups are currently hiring and 90 percent are looking to hire this year. It’s a fair assumption that most of them are saying that they are doing something different, and maybe they are. But that’s because when we think of the tech community, we think of a community that is continuously changing, evolving, disrupting and displacing existing markets — challenging the way we think, interact and operate in our day-to-day lives.

Five years ago, did you constantly look at your phone to see if someone saw your Facebook status? Did you press a button on your phone just to see if you missed that text? No, or at least not as much as you do now. Why? Because at that time, the requirement to always be socially connected didn’t exist. The iPhone was still just a touch screen phone and staying connected was a preference of the workaholics. Companies like Twitter, Salesforce and Uber were in their infancy. Fast forward to now, when life is an unending spectrum of engagement and everyone is trying something new, everyone is attempting to strategically differentiate themselves, their brands and their employment brand. At Dice, we’ve led the change in technology innovation to embrace the next generation wave.

It’s a wave that requires companies to find high-demand tech talent so that startup organizations can continue to pioneer technology advancements — and recruit the talent that will differentiate their brand.

According to a survey conducted by ewherry.com only 15 percent of jobs are created by big companies. The remaining 85 percent are created by startups and other companies. So if 90 percent of startups are looking to hire this year and if 88 percent of them think it’s hard to find talent, that means that in order to find the right people you have to do something to stand out from the crowd.

The next-generation recruitment process requires brand differentiation to your future employees — what are you projecting to future and potential candidates about your company, what are people already saying about you as a company, do you already have great people, what’s the culture like, what do you offer to employees? All these questions require clear marketing to candidates in their decision-making process, as these are questions that candidates are asking before they push the Apply button. Oftentimes we think of the recruitment process as three defined steps (having a consistent interview process, clear interview agenda and evolving your plan), when in actuality it all begins with marketing to the desired candidate. The three defined steps signify the conclusion of the process, rather than the full effort.

In an environment where the unemployment rate for tech is less than 4 percent, organizations have to ask themselves how their employment brand is truly differentiated. If you say something like, “We’re a super awesome startup (we’re so awesome that you can wear whatever you want to work, we’ve got flexible hours, a stocked fridge and all the coffee you need to help you brainstorm super awesome ideas,” the candidate may be sitting there thinking, “So what, who cares, everyone offers this.” If the same organization can tell the story that their tech team is creating technology programs that align environmental issues to conserve energy, and the tech team gets to pioneer in a new field, now you’re starting to tell the story that truly differentiates your brand and the tech positions that exist in your company.

Eighty eight percent of startups say that finding talent is hard. Dice believes we need to be able to help startups/emerging tech companies find talent to propel them forward.

To learn more about our startup division, please contact me.

Until next time, all the best,

Jelica Baker

Jelica Baker is the Business Development Manager for Dice. She started her career back in the day when publishing meant hard copy books, then moved into business development for a small consulting firm, and through some turns in the road found herself in the tech industry. She’s been an early employee at two tech startups. She lives in Silicon Valley with her golden retriever, who has more squeaky toys then he has room for on his bed. She is an avid reader of 40:20 Vision and Forbes, and is an active member of Levo League.