You probably know better than anyone that there’s a shortage of IT talent. The IT industry is constantly growing and evolving, and the unemployment rate in the tech sector is currently around 3%, so how do you get ahead of your competition to get the skilled IT professionals you need? It might surprise you, but the IT market and housing market currently have a lot in common. If you’re looking to engage the best IT consultants, you may need to start thinking in terms of buying a house and follow these 3 tips:
1. Act Fast!
If there is one thing we find ourselves frequently telling our clients, it’s to make an offer fast. If they don’t, they may lose a highly skilled IT consultant. When you’re buying a house in a hot market, sometimes you have to make an offer as soon as you’ve finished the first walk through. A highly skilled IT pro is no different. Be preapproved. You may need to be ready with an offer after the first interview, so have a budget approved before you start interviewing and be prepared to ask layered questions if the interview is going well. That way you don’t need to do a follow up interview and can act fast on a great consultant.
2. Think Non-Traditionally.
Just like when house shopping, you may have to change the negotiable criteria for your search in this hot IT market. Be willing to contract non-traditional IT consultants. Cutting edge technologies or a need for employees with skills in Angular, Android, and Node may require you to think outside the box when it comes to finding someone that can hit the ground running. Even before the recent TechHire Initiative; IT pros have been learning skills through programs like Coding Bootcamps, trade schools, and other expedited programs. Don’t discount these professionals. The right house for you to buy might be the one without a finished basement, and non-traditionally trained IT pros might have the skills and culture fit needed for your contract needs or open positions.
3. Be Competitive.
Sometimes it’s worth offering more than the asking price for a home. One principle of economics is well known: supply and demand. Right now, the demand for skilled IT talent is much higher than the supply. In order to attract and retain highly skilled professionals you need to be willing to compensate at a competitive rate. In many cases that includes offering perks similar to your competitors. IT consultants are being wooed. Don’t show up to the open house without your stellar offer ready.
Interviewing and assessing IT candidates can be as exhausting as attending open house after open house. Prepare for your talent search by making the most of your interview times, expanding your criteria, and having a strong offer prepared. You’ll be sure to secure the best IT pros for your project and hiring needs and will ultimately save you time, money, and a lot of stress. After all, you don’t want to waste your efforts and energy on a candidate who might not choose your offer or has already accepted one from someone else by the time you’re ready to make one. In a hot IT market, like a hot housing market, being willing to act fast, think non-traditionally, and make a competitive offer can be the difference between winning and losing out.
This article has been updated since its original publication date (4.14.15)