If you’re a technical recruiter, it’s likely that far too many of your workdays are spent struggling to identify and attract qualified candidates. According to the Dice 2018 Recruitment Automation report, roughly half of all tech recruiters (49%) say they spend at least 30 hours each week—or roughly 75% of their time—trying to source candidates. Further, 44% agree that a lack of automation has resulted in “missed hiring opportunities.”
It’s no surprise given that the unemployment rate for technology occupations recently fell to 1.3%. But even in a tight labor market, there are always new opportunities to both uncover additional sources of talent and improve the odds that tech workers will respond to your outreach.
#1. Apply automation across critical steps in the hiring process.
The first thing recruiters should do is leverage automation to eliminate the time-consuming task work that sucks up most of their day. AI-driven candidate sourcing and matching technology can do all the heavy lifting for you by searching internal and external talent databases against job criteria, producing matched and scored candidates in minutes.
Automation can also mitigate some of the most common bottlenecks that can derail an organization’s ability to move candidates through the pipeline. For example, most companies require coding tests as part of the hiring process, yet—according to the Devskiller Global Technical Hiring & Skills Report—approximately one-quarter of all candidates don’t complete the tests that are sent to them.
Devskiller finds that, among those who do complete coding tests, the average time for completion is 2.88 days from receiving the testing notification. Tuesdays seem to generate the fastest turnaround times, while Wednesdays are linked to the longest turnaround times. Further, it appears coding professionals are far more likely to complete a coding test during the week, so skip sending the test invitation on a Friday.
Analyze your historical data to see what trends you can identify regarding coding test completions. Then, automate your test invitations to increase response rates by scheduling them to go out on the days of the week that are associated with the fastest turnaround. This will add up significantly over time, helping you to reduce time to slate and, thereby, time to hire averages.
#2. Consider giving traditional degree requirements the boot.
Where do today’s developers learn to code? Based on the results of Hired’s 2019 State of Software Engineers survey, while 46% of respondents report having learned to code by earning a computer science degree, 21% say they are self-taught and 13% say they attended a technical training bootcamp. Among those who attended a bootcamp, more than three-quarters (76%) say it provided the preparation needed to land a software engineering job.
From the employer perspective, Indeed’s research suggests that the quality of bootcamp graduates is high and that bootcamps present the chance to attract candidates from underrepresented groups. So, work with hiring managers to rethink degree requirements for tech roles, and then identify tech bootcamps in the regions where you typically recruit. Develop relationships with program administrators and instructors and begin building tech talent pipelines for future hiring needs.
#3. Lead with meaningful messaging.
One of the biggest pain points recruiters identify when it comes to tech talent is the lack of response to communications regarding a job opening. Part of the problem is that recruiters often fail to highlight the most important aspect of the opportunity—salary. According to Hired’s 2019 Global Brand Health Report, 71% of tech professionals say they’d be more likely to respond to a recruiter if the salary range was provided up front.
Granted, compensation may be the driving factor when it comes to getting tech talent’s attention, but there are other job attributes that influence their willingness to consider a job change. Ongoing industry research reveals that tech workers are drawn to exciting projects, as well as the company’s use of cutting-edge technology and career development opportunities. So, include these details, too, but make sure salary and compensation remain front and center.
Yes, organizations typically resist providing salary information this early in the process, but the research is clear—not doing so is the biggest reason you’re not hearing back from tech talent. Recruiters who want to change their organization’s thinking can begin by gaining approval to “test” the approach for a limited group of jobs and track response rates, comparing them to response rates for outreach that doesn’t include salary information. Being able to clearly demonstrate through data that including salary details drives successful recruiting outcomes will make a compelling case for changing the practice companywide.
Connecting with tech talent requires adjusting your strategy to ensure every possible advantage works in your favor. From the application of AI and smart automation to critical steps in the hiring process to the identification of new sources of talent and the development of relevant messaging, making these three changes to your approach can translate into a big difference in how you spend your day and your tech recruiting outcomes.