In this digital age, it’s time for organizations to prioritize hiring the best tech minds in the market. Chief Product Officer Richard Hurd-Wood recently spoke at an event hosted by law firm Squire Patton Boggs for London Technology week: The Talent Challenge: Recruiting and Retaining Tech Talent in a Competitive Market. For those that couldn’t be there, we thought it would be useful to share how his advice on how to recruit tech talent.
Here’s what we learned:
1. Be flexible with location.
If you want to make sure you’re getting the very best people for the job, you need to be flexible about where your staff are based. If your job description specifies that every candidate needs to live in a major city, for example, and has to come into the office every day from 9-5, you could be limiting your pool of talent that lives in the suburbs and don’t have access to public transportation.
It may help to embrace the idea of flexible working – where possible, allow staff to work from their homes, or limit the required time in the office to certain number of days per week.
At Reward Gateway, we had a hard time recruiting web developers for our existing London and Plovdiv offices – these professionals were hugely in demand and, as a result, very expensive. To stay in line with our budget, and to tap into a different candidate pool, we recruited and set up a team of developers in Skopje, Macedonia – and we’ve never looked back.
2. Build relationships with universities and colleges.
It’s important to have good relationships with universities in each of your business locations. That way, you’ll have a steady stream of fresh talent whenever you need it.
Technology-related university degrees are growing in number and popularity in the digital age, so now is the time to snap up graduates, even before they hit the “real world.” Reach out and arrange to attend recruitment fairs and events at local universities and make your booth stand out. Better yet, consider adding more sections to your Careers page to attract candidates of all levels all year long.
3. Focus on culture.
A lot of Reward Gateway staff joined us from other tech companies that had great benefits but poor culture – which, eventually, drove their staff away. Benefits are irrelevant if you don’t get your culture, values and communications right – they might attract people to your business, but they won’t help you retain them.
If your workforce is global, you’ll need to adapt your culture and recognition program so that it includes each territory and is relevant to every single employee. At Reward Gateway, we’re careful to make sure that our staff in the smaller offices, as well as those who work alone from home, feel as included as those who work in our larger locations.
4. Embrace Glassdoor.
In a recent series of interviews for a vacancy, we discovered that every single candidate we spoke to had looked at our page on Glassdoor. Recently, our CEO committed to answering every single review himself within 24 hours.
So to hear that candidates were viewing our Glassdoor was a positive for us. Also,Glassdoor feedback also allows us to deal with any problems that arise, as it provides an anonymous feedback platform for those employees who feel less comfortable about speaking up.
5. Communicate, communicate, communicate.
Communication is fundamental when it comes to retaining staff. It’s impossible for an employee to feel engaged if they don’t have an adequate understanding of what’s happening in the company at any given moment.
Communication is even more crucial when you’ve got a global workforce – as Richard says, you ‘cannot overcommunicate’ when you’ve got staff all around the world. Social media is a huge trend, especially within tech companies – 70 percent of RG staff get their company news from our Facebook page. We use our SmartHub technology to showcase internal communications via our boom! portal, where we feature employee and company news daily.
How are working to recruit tech talent? Share your ideas in the comments!