The information technology (IT) industry in the Philippines continues to grow. Along with this, are IT-enabled industries that embrace and depend on the power of technology. It is for this reason that the need for IT talent continues to grow exponentially.
Some of the most in-demand skill sets include those which have something to do with the cloud, mobile devices, cyber security, and Big Data among others. With more and more businesses relying on IT infrastructures, the demand is barely keeping up with the available supply.
Hiring IT experts is challenging. It is imperative that hiring managers must have enough knowledge about the industry. Aside from the technical knowledge required, hiring managers also need a bit of planning and the right execution to attract quality talent. When performing due diligence to find the best people for a job, hiring managers also need to be careful of becoming too stringent as to turn off good talent.
Gauging talent goes beyond the paper. That’s a fact most HR managers agree about. There are those who look good on paper, but turn out to be difficult employees to get along with. There are those who do not look good on paper but turn out to either be exemplary employees and dependable colleagues.
So, how do you balance these elements without committing a costly oversight?
Here are a few of the most common mistakes hiring managers might fall prey to when hiring IT experts. We’ve included a few tips to avoid them as well.
1. Offering compensation not commensurate with industry standards.
Recruiting IT talent is no walk in the park, to begin with. Quality talent is hard to find, quality IT talent is even more difficult to find. Do not make the mistake of not checking industry standards for technical roles especially specialized ones.
On one hand, if your offer is way below the acceptable standards, you might either end up with a sub-par hire or risk having them poached to the next highest bidder.
On the other hand, offering too much just to make your new hire happy might end hurting your company’s bottom line in the long run. Know what rates to offer for which types of roles. By doing so, you will have better chances of maximizing the services of a quality talent. This can prove beneficial for your company’s bottom line.
2. Failure to consider cultural fit into your hiring decision.
Hard skills and experience alone do not make a talent the perfect talent. We all know that. Soft skills and fit matter as well. Even the most capable hire might not feel motivated to work and give it their best if they feel they do not fit in.
When deciding whether to hire someone or not, be sure to put team dynamics and cultural fit into account. Will this candidate’s personality complement that of your current team’s dynamics? How will this candidate’s personality affect the current team’s cohesion?
Learn as much as you can about your candidate’s personality. Only by doing so will you increase their chances of thriving within your organization well. And of course, your team will benefit the most from a motivated and productive team member.
3. Putting too much emphasis on experience over trainability.
The thing about the IT industry is that it’s a fast-moving field. Programming languages evolve quickly! This means that putting too much importance on experience is not your best indicator when proving a candidate’s competence.
Therefore, instead of giving experience too much value, look for candidates who are trainable. Look for flexibility and adaptability. These are just as important as past experiences but the ability to learn the ropes of a quickly evolving field is the best skill any IT candidate must have under their belt.
4. Putting too much value on credentials without testing for real skill.
Looking good on paper is not that difficult. One can list a number of skills and make it seem they are experts on all of those listed. Skills written on paper does not always and does not necessarily transform into high-performing IT professionals.
Lists of skills or credentials are no longer the only gauge for competence. In fact, it isn’t a very reliable one.
Skills verification is an important part of the process you must not overlook, IT experts are, after all, needed for their real expertise on a number of skill sets required. Today, there’s an infinite number of tests to check or verify skills.
5. Confining your search within your immediate location.
Programmers can work efficiently from anywhere; they can interact with peers from various places, or even from different time zones. Therefore, do not limit your talent pool within specific geographical spaces.
Consider establishing a back office in a highly skilled country like the Philippines. It’s never been cheaper and easier to do so as it is today.
6. Failure to set the right expectations before the interview.
Setting the right expectations is important for both the organization and most importantly, for the candidate as well. Be upfront and clear about what you expect your new hires to fulfill from the beginning.
Setting expectations help better outcomes; humans, after all, behave according to extant norms and values. Therefore, make these norms and value systems crystal clear at the onset.
Setting the right expectations can be done not only through your direct interaction with the candidates as an interviewer during the interview. Putting someone to greet candidates upon their arrival can a difference in how they will size up your company. This will reify the kind of culture you wish them to expect.
Moreover, during the conduct of the interview, make sure that the people who will conduct it are in congruence so that no same questions are asked over and over again. An interviewer for technical questions must ask about technical stuff and leave those that pertain to soft skills to the interviewer assigned to it.
7. Hesitating to get help when needed.
Searching for specialized talent is not easy. It is not easy even for those who specialize in recruiting these highly in-demand, but scarce talents.
Therefore, if your organization has a limited network of IT talent from which to draw and hire from, do not hesitate to tap the help of expert, specialized IT staffing and recruitment firms such as Sysgen Philippines.
These staffing and recruitment firms are well-equipped with the experience in and technical knowledge for hiring IT professionals.