With tech companies rocked by significant post-pandemic volatility, it is an industry that has proven itself to be durable regardless of market conditions. With a survey recently reporting that about 80% of recently laid-off tech company workers found a new job within three months of starting their search, what trends is the industry now experiencing and how do recruiters ensure that their next hires are the perfect fit?
Where the tech industry is right now
The COVID-19 epidemic and the move towards remote work caused a surge in the IT sector. Software development, data science, cybersecurity, and machine learning were among the skills in great demand. However, the return to the workplace has reduced these needs. The hiring surge of 2020/2021 has left many companies overstaffed and the huge layoffs reported in the press are a clear indicator of these new hybrid, economically unsettling times.
Despite this, if we’re to look at the last major challenges to hit tech, namely the dotcom bubble in the early 2000s and the subprime mortgage crisis of 2007/2008, we see the sector take an initial hit, but subsequently experience huge growth as it adapted to new circumstances.
Experts believe that the industry is currently in this same scenario, and are optimistic that recent troubles will give way to extraordinary developments over the next decade.
Which puts the spotlight on hiring, and the importance of organizations to hone their recruiting processes in advance of this next phase.
Tech trends in hiring
Software development, data science, cybersecurity, and machine learning still remain relevant and important skills needed for industry growth. But there is increasing pressure to review hiring practices.
Companies are emphasizing diversity and inclusion more than ever before, and are looking for applicants with excellent technical and soft skills, such as communication and problem-solving capabilities.
With any industry experiencing occasional shrinkage and huge periods of growth, the hiring requirements change. The key hiring trends for tech in 2023 and beyond will include:
1. Remote work is not going away completely
One of the most major developments brought about by the COVID-19 epidemic in the IT sector was the move toward remote work. Even with the move back to onsite or remote work, remote roles are still common with many organizations including it as a perk. As a result, hiring in the tech sector has shifted to emphasize remote work, and employers are increasingly seeking people who are at ease working from their homes.
2. Popular skills still remain in demand
In the IT sector, there are several talents that are still very much in high demand, such as software development, data science, cybersecurity, and machine learning. In a competitive job market, those companies looking for these skills are often prepared to pay above and beyond for candidates possessing this type of expertise.
3. Inclusion and Diversity
In a 2021 report, 60% of business leaders reported a lack of diversity in their tech workforce. Companies working to employ a more diverse staff as diversity and inclusion are becoming more essential in the digital sector. This entails enlisting the services of employees with diverse viewpoints, skill sets, and experiences. Companies do this in an effort to foster a more diverse and creative workplace.
4. Soft Skills are Becoming More Important
Intangible qualities - the ability to communicate well, collaborate, think critically and even network - are now skills being sought in tech. The traditional view of IT professionals with hardcore technical knowledge working independently is now no longer the case. In the modern tech workplace, workers need to work out new ideas, balance opinions, predict potential problems and resolve conflict efficiently. Those possessing a good soft skill base will undoubtedly experience more professional growth than those without.
What are the hiring risks in the tech industry?
The risks in hiring in any industry are well acknowledged: employing the incorrect person, issues with intellectual property, dangers from diversity and inclusion, recruiting costs. Bringing a new person into an organization carries with it an element of danger. Companies may make educated hiring decisions and take preventative measures by being aware of these risks.
In order to make wise recruiting decisions, it is critical to be aware of the risks associated with hiring for the technology sector, as this section outlines them in detail.
1. Making the wrong hire
A recent stat claims that 63% of applicants admit to lying on their CV, and misrepresenting info on a resume is nothing new in the tech industry. It goes without saying that hiring the wrong applicant poses one of the biggest risks in the IT sector. The bottom line of the business may suffer as a result, and time and resources may be wasted. Companies may lessen this risk by carefully vetting applicants and running rigorous background checks to make sure they have the required training and expertise.
2. Concerns with intellectual property
Companies that recruit workers who have access to sensitive information from their previous workplace run the danger of losing their competitive edge in the fiercely competitive tech sector. Employers that want to safeguard their intellectual property might reduce this risk by having workers sign non-compete and non-disclosure agreements.
3. Risks of diversity and inclusion
The importance of diversity and inclusion in the IT sector is growing, and employers run the risk of prejudice and discrimination throughout the employment process. Employing diverse recruiting procedures, such as blind resume reviews to eliminate unconscious biases from the selection process, can help businesses reduce this risk.
4. Hiring cost
Companies run the risk of paying huge expenditures when adding new staff since recruiting may be quite expensive. Establishing a recruiting budget, doing cost-benefit assessments, and being aware of the costs related to the hiring process are all ways that businesses may reduce this risk.
How do background checks mitigate the risk in tech hiring?
Organizations need to know exactly who someone is before they join the team. And to this end, background checks are essential for reducing recruiting risks for businesses in the tech sector. There are various types of background checks that businesses may employ to reduce the risks associated with hiring. Whether it’s avoiding the wrong hire, or ensuring the right qualifications are being met, companies can reduce their risk of making the wrong decision by conducting a range of background checks, including criminal background checks, education and employment verification, and reference checks.
Criminal background checks are used to find out if an applicant has a criminal history and are crucial for reducing the risk of employing somebody who might be dangerous to the business or its workforce. Criminal background checks can also be used to make sure that businesses follow all applicable laws, including those governing background checks and business rules.
Verification of education and employment experience
Verification of a candidate's education and job history is done to ensure that they possess the credentials listed on their résumé. These background checks reduce the possibility of hiring somebody who could have fabricated their credentials or a track record of underwhelming performance at past positions.
Reference checks are performed to get details from prior employers regarding a candidate's performance and employment history. Reference checks assist in reducing the risk associated with employing someone who could have a history of subpar performance or unprofessional behavior at work.
The role of technology in streamlining the background check process
For businesses in the IT sector, technology has significantly streamlined the background check procedure. This section highlights the many technologies being utilized to streamline and automate the background check procedure as well as the advantages that these technologies provide.
Background check procedures are being made more efficient by automated systems that handle diverse responsibilities including data collecting and verification. Additionally, by standardizing the background check procedure, these systems may guarantee that each applicant is examined fairly and consistently.
Electronic permission forms
Background check procedures are made more efficient by using electronic permission forms instead of paper ones. The background check procedure may be conducted more quickly and easily by using electronic permission forms that can be filled out and signed.
Data analytics for large volume of data
Large volumes of background check-related data are being analyzed using data analytics technologies, which give businesses insightful information on the background check procedure. These insights can assist businesses in identifying areas for development and in making better recruiting choices.
Machine intelligence or artificial Intelligence (AI)
The process of conducting background checks is becoming automated in many ways, including data analysis and applicant screening, thanks to artificial intelligence (AI). AI has the potential to expedite background checks while also guaranteeing their consistency and objectivity.
In summary, technology has significantly aided IT businesses in simplifying the background check procedure. Companies may increase the effectiveness and accuracy of the background check process and make better recruiting decisions by utilizing technology including automated systems, electronic consent forms, data analytics, and artificial intelligence.
Three tips to implement background checks in the tech sector
Companies in the IT sector may effectively reduce hiring risks by using employment background checks. The best practices for adopting background checks are covered in this section, including how to create a program that works, the kinds of background checks that should be included, and how to deal with the findings.
1. Creating a program for effective background checks
The demands and objectives of the business must be carefully taken into account when designing a background check program. When creating this kind of program, considerations such as the company's size, the types of roles being filled, and the degree of risk attached to the position should be made. When developing a background check program, businesses should take legal requirements, industry norms and laws governing background checks into account.
2. Background investigation techniques
The unique demands and objectives of the firm will determine the sorts of background checks that should be included in the program. Criminal background checks, school and employment verification, right to work checks, and reference checks are a few of the most popular forms of background checks. When determining which background check categories to include, employers should take into account the nature of the information they need to acquire and the degree of risk involved with the position.
3. Managing background check results
The handling of background check findings necessitates careful consideration of applicant rights as well as privacy laws and regulations. Companies should have a defined and standardized procedure for dealing with background check findings, including how to use the data obtained to make informed recruiting decisions. Additionally, businesses should think about how to inform applicants of the findings of background checks and how to keep and safeguard the data amassed throughout the process.
Doing employee background checks is a successful strategy for IT organizations to reduce hiring risks. Companies can make more informed hiring decisions and reduce their risk of hiring the wrong candidate by adhering to best practices for implementing background checks, such as designing an efficient background check program, including the proper types of background checks, and handling the results of background checks in a manner that is consistent and compliant with privacy laws and regulations.
Why tech companies often hire background check agencies
Tech firms may effectively reduce recruiting risks by working with a professional agency to perform background checks on potential hires. This section highlights the advantages of employing a professional agency to perform background checks, as well as the advantages of outsourcing this task to a professional. The agency's knowledge and resources are discussed in the process.
Resources and knowledge
Background check companies have access to a plethora of knowledge and resources. They have expertise performing background checks and are knowledgeable about the rules and legislation that control this procedure. A variety of tools and technologies are also available to specialized organizations, which may assist to speed the background check procedure and guarantee that it is carried out consistently and properly.
A reduction in time and effort
Companies may save time and effort by using a professional firm to do background checks. Background checks may take a lot of time and resources, especially for businesses that are employing a lot of new hires. Companies may concentrate on their main company operations and leave the background check procedure to the professionals by outsourcing this job to an expert firm.
Expert agencies can assist businesses in ensuring that they are in compliance with the rules and regulations governing the background check process since they are aware about them. This is particularly crucial in the IT sector, where there are constantly new rules and regulations being put in place, and where businesses need to keep up with the most recent changes in order to reduce their risk of breaking the law and other regulations.
Background checks can be done correctly and consistently by reputable firms since they have the knowledge and tools necessary. Companies may be sure that their background check process is being done in a way that is consistent with best practices and that the results of background checks are accurate and trustworthy by outsourcing this function to an expert.
In conclusion, IT organizations may effectively reduce hiring risks by using a professional agency to do background checks on prospective employees. Companies may take advantage of the knowledge and resources that agencies offer to the process, as well as the time saving and increased accuracy and consistency that come from working with an expert.