3 Tips to Enhance your IT Staffing Strategy

In the past, a competitive salary with challenging projects was enough to attract top tech talent to your organization. Today, paying competitive salaries, while important, is only part of the IT staffing equation.

We asked Conor Sibley (CS), CTO of Higher Logic, a prominent media services company in Washington D.C, Stephany Samuels (SS), Bluewolf’s VP of nationwide recruiting, and Michael Kirven (MK), co-founder at Bluewolf, what they thought were the most important tips for hiring tech talent in 2012. Here’s what they had to say:

Tip 1: Hire for Cultural Fit
Cultural fit is one of the most important considerations for hiring managers. If your team is close-knit and collaborates well, the wrong hire can throw it off balance.

CS: We are very picky about personality fit. During the hiring process (even over a phone screen), there are people that we talk with that we know would not be a fit. Others may fit the job requirements on paper, but just don’t have the spark. We have found that when we have had to let people go, it’s been because of poor personality fit rather than technical reasons.

Be clear on what your company and team culture is and isn't and expose candidates to it from the outset. When you identify a high-quality candidate who is also a cultural fit, make the offer immediately. 

Tip 2: Embrace the Elastic Workforce
As companies adopt flexible technologies and embark on innovation driven projects, they need to adjust their staffing philosophy to an agile one that embodies a core reason many turn to the cloud in the first place: flexibility.

MK: For many of our clients, we provide an elastic workforce, or contingent pool of specialists that companies can draw from on an as-needed basis. Unpredictable requirements of today's business cycle strain full-time staff. For many organizations, getting the most from your workforce means supplementing full-time staff with a pool of contractors with specific skill-sets.

Look for candidates who can quickly go into a situation, gauge the culture, processes and challenges, and tailor the technology to the company’s most immediate needs. As technologies are implemented and changed so quickly, candidates also have to be able to quickly adjust and re-orient themselves to shifting objectives and priorities.

Tip 3: Try Before you Buy
How many times have you hired someone with high expectations and been let down? Bringing in a full-time employee before they have had time to demonstrate their skills, may be a risky investment for your team and budget.

SS: When interviewing a candidate, the most important question I ask myself is whether this person has what it takes to help take our business to the next level. By hiring them on a temporary basis, we have the time to feel confident the candidate is a good fit and consistently exceeds our expectations.

When adding a new employee, it is best to test them to see if they will fit your culture and environment. Once the candidate has passed your test, then it’s time to make the commitment and the investment. It’s a win-win situation for you and your new hire!

This article was originally featured in our Annual IT Salary Guide. For an inside look at IT Salaries and other game changing tips, download the 2012 IT Salary Guide.

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