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Can Hiring IT Talent Get Any Harder? Yes It Can!
5 Data Points to Prove You Have to Hire Faster and Smarter

By: Dave Smith, Founder, Triple Crown Consulting

Just when you thought finding and hiring IT talent couldn’t get any harder, January 2017 arrived. The stock market rallied, unemployment hit 4.8% and the new administration’s promises of tax cuts and deregulation have many businesses optimistic about growth. For job seekers with technology skills, career opportunities continue to look blindingly bright. For employers struggling to hire tech talent, the situation feels otherwise.

As summarizes in its Tech Employment Snapshot, the tech industry unemployment rate hovered between 2.1% and 2.9% in 2016. A 60% year-over-year surge in technology talent hiring from our customers at Triple Crown this January is only one of many indicators telling us that the tech job market is only going to get tighter and tougher for employers. Below is accounting look at hiring changes we are seeing as we work on the front lines of supplying businesses with the hardware, software, data and embedded specialists who are in high demand today. Review these stats to see what you are up against and read further to see what you can do about it.

The Data: 5 Stats that Show Why Hiring Tech Is Harder

  1. Hiring Decision Time Is Down to Microseconds – Triple Crown’s hiring statistics show that employers have had to streamline and accelerate hiring decisions. Over the last year, opening-to-offer time has shrunk from 10 business days to just 4.3 days.
  2. Little-to-No Time for Interviews – Employers have less and less time to conduct candidate interviews. Our interview-to opening ratio, for example, has dropped from 2.3:1 down to 1.8:1. We are also seeing that the majority of talent assessment efforts are happening over the phone or via Skype. Whether in person or online, employers are conducting fewer interviews which is helping them save time and increase their chances of landing talent.
  3. Fill Rates Are Way Up – Triple Crown’s fill ratio has increased from 31% to 46%, which means we are filling almost 50% more positions than a year ago. While we are growing, this is not because of a huge influx of clients but a change in our clients’ hiring behavior. Our customers are far less likely to conduct multiple interviews and much more likely to hire a good find (the professionals we deliver at high speed) quickly.
  4. Decision Makers Are Dwindling – The number of decision makers involved in hiring has decreased from 2.6 to 1.4. Customers are realizing that agonizing over decision-making or creating committees is counterproductive when time and talent are of the essence.
  5. Pay Rates Have Increased (Big Time!) – We have seen pay rates for tech talent jump by a whopping 19% in one year. This big bump up shows how important filling these tech roles is to employers.

The fact is there is no end in sight to the IT talent shortage. So what should you do? First, realize that HR and VMS solutions have to be sidelined when it comes to hiring premier tech talent. Hiring managers and business leaders that wait patiently for bureaucratic internal hiring processes to move ahead will be waiting forever to fill their jobs.

Second, focus on where you can increase speed and streamline processes. Can you take some decision makers out of the talent assessment process? Can you reduce the number of interviews required?
Remember, your competitors are accelerating their hiring process. Look at where you can do the same.

Thirdly, embrace the project-driven nature of tech work today. If you are only looking for full-time hires you are limiting your tech talent pool. There is a large swath of dynamic innovators across the tech sector who like to move from project to project and they don’t mind switching employers to do it. They want their work to be exciting and pioneering and have far less focus on the employer than they do the work. To tap into these adaptable and mobile tech workforce, you need to embrace project hiring.

The Challenge Makes You Stronger

At Triple Crown, we believe the hiring and recruiting challenges of today are making us a better provider of IT talent—and the numbers bear that out. Employers of IT talent can embrace the same mindset. Adapt with the tech talent shortage (streamline bureaucracy, work faster, engage project talent) and you too can win great candidates in this challenging market.

If you would like to have a deeper conversation about what we are seeing in the market today, please shoot me an email and we can set up a time to talk.