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Hiring Top Technology Talent

Focus on People

"New Mobile Technology Requires a New Breed of IT Leadership" explains why a new breed of IT leadership is required to successfully attract talent to address challenges in the coming years. This new breed of IT leadership understands that they can only attract and retain red-hot talent if they have top talent to work with. This is especially important for candidates in specific industries or with specific skill sets that are in high demand.

Top Talent

Top talent has no resume; it doesn’t need one. Nor is it actively looking for a job. To attract top talent, companies first need a clear and attractive marketing and employer branding strategy and then know how to reach those passive candidates in a non-intrusive manner, for example through social media talent acquisition approaches.

To quantify this, 92% of US companies used social media to find talent in 2012, 73% have successfully hired through social media sites, and in-network referrals are seven times more likely to be hired then non-referrals. Some 83% of global recruiting leaders say that employer branding is critical for attracting top talent, and almost half of companies find professional social networks to be highly effective for employer branding. The most-used social media sites for recruitment are LinkedIn (89%), Facebook (26%), and Twitter (15%), with lesser known sites such as Upspring, PerfectBusiness, and Cofoundr serving specific segments.

Finding the Talent

Manually posting job descriptions and reviewing candidate matches is not feasible. Some automation is needed, not only to match existing positions with candidate keywords, but also to discover possible candidates through references they received, even if they don’t match the keyword search. Several companies with various social recruiting offerings are currently competing in this space. No clear market leader exists; in fact, each of them has a varying focus and is trying to find the right mix to make it work.

Two early and better-known players are Bullhorn and Broadbean. Bullhorn’s focus is on applicant tracking software and social recruiting while Broadbean’s focus is on job posting distribution and resume search. With a number of additional startups just founded recently, a new player in the mix, ReqCloud, is starting to make inroads as the first truly encompassing theme of integrating employer brand content from existing blog and news sources, embedding photos and videos of the workplace, and providing social recruiting in a consistent, automated and easy to use manner for both the recruiter and the job applicant.

The new breed of IT leadership needs to understand that even the slightest edge can make the difference between appearing old and stale or modern and hip when attracting top talent for the organization. Such candidates need to be vetted not only for the experience they bring, but also their market reputation, which should align with your brand and reputation in the market. What if you stand for reliable, highly secure solutions, but hire a cannon gun that was responsible for security breaches? Top talent perhaps, but a bad fit for your company.

Using Social Networking

Again, top talent often doesn’t have a resume. They find jobs by word-of-mouth when they are ready to make the switch. Such passive candidates are difficult to identify. But when the new social recruiting tools bring together LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and Google+ with the company's applicant tracking software, complex algorithms can quickly identify candidates through their networks and from endorsement by coworkers. Making it easy for recruiters to send passive candidates a targeted job description that they can apply for with one click is one of the new features companies like ReqCloud are actively working on.

Getting Your Message Out

If IT departments do not actively engage to control their employer brand message, the result is a diffuse, unclear, or off message, and those high value passive candidates will simply be turned off. Developing a strategic approach to employer branding is new for IT, but the new breed of IT leadership will need to embrace building a strong and clear branding message, implementing it with their career websites, professional social networks, job board postings, and word-of-mouth campaigns. They also understand that this effort requires attention.

It is no longer enough to review the messages being sent once a year. Today, market shifts are quick, perception of employer branding is changing rapidly, and employer branding may be different between different channels. Constant verification and measurement of perception of candidates has to be performed, and that’s where the new breed of IT leadership will leverage these tools in the coming years.

Click to download Stefan Dietrich's latest white paper, New Mobile Technology Requires a New Breed of IT Leadership.

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