Struggling to find quality IT talent? You’re not alone.

As John Edwards wrote in a recent CIO article, “Analytics, artificial intelligence, the internet of things, and numerous other forms of technology disruption are leading to a shortage of qualified experts in fields ranging from software development to networking to security to data analysis and beyond.” But if you find yourself in this position, take heart. There are some innovative techniques you can use to identify and secure top tech talent, even in the unprecedented environment in which we find ourselves today.

Among them:

  • Embrace the Virtual. While the coronavirus pandemic has put a temporary stop to recruitment fairs and other networking events, there are ways to replicate these activities in the virtual realm. For example, hackathons or case challenges give software developers, designers, and project managers the chance to demonstrate their abilities and allow companies to tap into a larger job market than might be possible via traditional recruiting methods.
  • Tap into Data Analytics. As Edwards put it, “Analytics is widely used to reveal insights into sales trends, customer sentiment, network performance, and an endless number of other business and IT operations. Unfortunately, relatively few IT organizations have recognized that analytics can also be used to identify recruitment trends and patterns.” For example, data analytics can determine whether new hires from a certain university or network tend to be top performers and, if so, enable the organization to adjust recruiting efforts accordingly.
  • Build Strong Community Ties. A critical step in identifying qualified IT talent is making it known that you’re seeking it. Building and maintaining relationships with local universities, business associations, research hubs, and other like minded organizations can go a long way in helping a company recruit candidates who are not only qualified but also aligned with the organization’s mission.
  • Promote Perks. According to a survey conducted by job search engine developer Adzuna, 60 percent of employees would take a lower salary for better benefits. These could be the quality of healthcare, parental leave, flexible work schedules, training, tuition assistance, or just a really cool office. Whatever the case may be, promoting these aspects of your enterprise culture, values, and vision can help you attract talent even when competing against companies with deeper pockets.

Edwards’ piece contains more on these and other strategies for finding the right IT hire. It might be a challenging hiring market, but it’s still possible to find and retain the skills you need to drive your company forward.