With large scale shifts currently underway in the global jobs market, companies in the Australian tech sector are finding it increasingly difficult to attract and retain the best talent.
The problem is two-fold, experienced workers with the skills are less likely to leave their current position during uncertain times. Plus, the number of skilled workers entering Australia is yet to bounce back to anywhere near pre-COVID levels.
These factors have led to a huge increase in salaries and counter offers which, if left unchecked, will make the Australian tech sector less competitive over the long term. The challenge then for companies is finding and attracting the best talent without paying over the odds. New talent acquisition strategies are required.
To do this effectively, companies need to streamline their recruitment process to speed up hiring. A long, drawn-out interview process is not only time consuming and expensive, but it also puts potential candidates off, making it more likely they will sign for a competitor.
So, to attract the best talent, companies should consider putting the following steps in place to speed up the hiring process:
Define the skills you are looking for
Job descriptions are often recycled from existing roles, with new skills added to find the ultimate 'Unicorn' candidate. But guess what, these unicorn candidates don't exist.
Research shows that only 16 per cent of new hires have the necessary skills for their jobs, both the present and future. So, companies should shift away from the ultimate candidate profile and define a set of essential skills instead.
Get your paperwork in order
One of the obstacle’s for hiring suitable candidates is to get the relevant paperwork in order. Delays during this stage can still cost you a potential hire, even if you have offered them the job.
Remember, a candidate who performed well for you will also have performed well during other interviews so that they may have several offers on the table. So don't delay; it's vital then that all paperwork is completed and ready to be signed as soon as possible.
In fact, we recommend not going to market until all the approvals have come through.
Schedule interviews quickly
A clearly defined set of skills combined with a compelling value proposition will attract qualified candidates. But you still risk losing them to competitors if you don't act quickly. So you must schedule interviews as soon as possible.
Technologies such as Zoom & Teams make interviewing easier today than ever before, so there is no excuse for delaying the interview process. In most cases, you should arrange interviews no more than two days following initial contact.
Make decisions fast
A quick interview process is no good unless it's followed with a quick decision. One of the best methods for assessing candidates' suitability is to use a scorecard during the interview process.
This will help you eliminate candidates quickly and build a shortlist of potential hires.
And once a decision is made, YES or NO, you should convey it to the candidate as soon as possible. This allows both parties to move on quickly without wasting any further time.
Attracting the best candidates has always been a challenge for Australian tech companies. And it's going to get worse in the coming months as the world recovers from the COVID crisis.
But by updating and, in some cases streamlining their recruitment practices, companies can get a head start on the competition by attracting and retaining the best talent. This is sure to pay off in the long run because talent is the biggest differentiator of your brand.