May the Best Offer Win: the battle to attract and retain top tech talent

Sally Yau

Sally Yau

Marketing Coordinator

A recent study revealed that more than 53% of tech recruiters have difficulty finding candidates with the necessary technical skills. As a custom web and software development agency that also provides team augmentation services, our ability to recruit and retain top talent is essential to our success.

This blog will highlight our recruitment process and how we have adapted to accommodate the competitive market. We also provide some helpful tips on how companies can better attract and retain tech talent on their own.

Our proven process in hiring tech talent

With 20+ years of experience, our process for hiring great people has adjusted to changing market conditions over time.

“Competition for tech talent has always been fierce. Over the last 20 years, I can’t recall there ever being a significant oversupply. We’ve adapted every step of the way – continuously improving as we learned to successfully compete with bigger players.” – Dane Eldridge, CEO of 4mation

Here is our process in 4 steps:

  1. We start by getting to know the candidate better via a phone screen. We ask about their experience, salary expectations and why they are interested in 4mation or the particular role they applied for.
  1. Once a candidate is put forward for consideration, they progress into an official interview. We ask about their experience and check culture fit. Employees who identify more with their company experience greater job satisfaction and perform better, according to Harvard Business Review. Hence, cultural fit is an important aspect we consider when hiring a candidate.
  1. After our recruiters have checked for culture fit, a tech round is arranged. These technical interviews are held by our specialists who work as developers. They also understand what good engineering practices look like. This helps assess the candidate’s technical ability for the role.
  1. Detailed feedback from each assessment is provided to the candidate within 24 hours. If they progress, we will extend an offer and commence onboarding. If the candidate does not progress, with their permission, we keep their details in mind for future opportunities that arise.

Our interview process generally ends here. If we are hiring for team augmentation, an additional interview with the client is scheduled. This process ensures we find the perfect fit for the client and bridge digital skill gaps within their existing team.

How do we find the perfect fit in this current market?

With the current tech talent shortage, companies are struggling to find developers. Let alone hire one with the exact skillset and experience they are looking for. And as equally important –  the ability to retain developers.

Besides the obvious competitive salary, Chelsea, our internal recruiter, says it’s also about the culture here at 4mation – 

“We are always looking for ways to enhance our award-winning culture. 4mation provides perks to make our workplace great. This includes paid overtime, flexible working and great development opportunities. Aside from that, we are a team of people who love celebrating achievements together.”

In addition to salary and perks, we’ve also learned to streamline our recruitment process:

  1. Discuss salary upfront and at the initial phone screen with the candidate.
  1. Enable a framework for fast, high-quality decision-making when hiring.
  1. Standard questioning to have a set of proven questions to rely on. This helps save time brainstorming new questions on the spot.

Scott, our technical recruiter, adds that it is also important to provide a memorable interview process. This helps leave a positive long-lasting impression on the candidate.

Different ways to close the skills gap

As mentioned above, hiring the right candidate can be a hefty process. Being in competition with organisations that have more to offer can mean losing top talent. This is why companies are becoming more creative in closing skill gaps.

Earlier this year, CBA built their own tech hub in partnership with local universities. By doing so, they can equip graduates with skills to fill in-demand tech roles. This is a scalable approach aimed to employ top graduates ahead of competition.

In addition, organisations are launching programs to upskill their employees. According to McKinsey, the 2nd most common tactic used in addressing skill gaps is upskilling. As current employees are already familiar with your organisation, they make great nominees when opportunities emerge.

Non-traditional hirings like team augmentation have also risen in popularity. It gives companies access to top talent without interviewing and tech testing on their own. It also offers a wide range of flexible contract terms that companies view as highly attractive. This allows them to focus their energy on core business activities.

See more: Team augmentation at 4mation

Tips on how you can better attract and hire talent

As to how you can attract and hire candidates on your own, Scott, says his number one tip is to understand what talent wants –

“To attract talent, you first need to know what they are looking for. Whether that is a flexible workplace or development opportunities. If you are unable to offer a competitive salary package, what else can you offer? Knowing what developers want is step one.”

Building on top of that, Scott also mentions the importance of reviewing policies. Companies should identify and remove policies that no longer serve employees. E.g., compulsory back-to-office or strict dress code policies. 

Lastly, hold memorable interviews. Recruiters are a candidate’s first experience with your company culture. Holding interactive interviews can leave a lasting impact on a potential candidate.

(PSSS! We are currently hiring – click here to check out our careers page 👀)

Hiring pic

Interested to find out more about our recruitment process? Watch the video below with our Marketing Coordinator, Sally, and recruiters, Chelsea and Scott.

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