TECH HIRING TRENDS OF 2021
By ConnectPoint Search Group
Amid an uncertain business climate, there were numerous predictions made last year for what tech hiring might look like in 2021. Now, as Q1 is behind us and we move through Q2, the tech hiring trends of 2021 are clearly taking shape and many of the 2020 year-end projections are coming to fruition. Hiring managers, take note of the following tech hiring trends as you prepare for growth in the coming months.
Talented technology professionals have been in high demand for years now. However, when the pandemic hit, that demand skyrocketed as companies scrambled to quickly go remote and innovate for the times. As this past year has progressed, tech professionals have remained at the top of the list of those in the highest demand for hiring and that is not expected to change in the foreseeable future. What does this mean for companies who need to hire (and keep) tech talent? Two things:
Speed of Hire | It is a candidate-driven market for tech professionals and speed to market for hiring is key to securing the talent you need. A slow-moving hiring process comes at a cost for companies and may deter a candidate’s interest or be surpassed by a competitor’s offer. Differentiate yourself from competitors by improving the candidate’s experience and act quickly. In today’s market, most high-quality candidates are currently employed, and it is not uncommon for talented tech professionals to have multiple offers on the table; to attract and retain leading talent, it is imperative to move swiftly through the interview and hiring process.
Is it time to refresh your hiring process? Check out our blog 5 Tips on How to Speed Up Your Hiring Process
Retention is Key | Talented tech professionals are in high demand and if their current employer does not intentionally make staying worth their while, it is likely they will move on. Paying attention to retention is key. More on this, below.
This past year has turned professionals onto the benefits of working remotely, and, whether full-time or in a hybrid model, many businesses are embracing the fact that remote work is now a part of the new norm. Technology companies are leading the way here and many have already taken the steps to implement a permanent full-time remote work model.
While many professionals are attracted to remote-work flexibility, opting to offer a remote-work schedule is also beneficial to employers. Hiring full-time remote employees alleviate the concern for geographic location, thus opening the talent pool and allowing companies to consider candidates nationwide.
On the flip side, companies are finding that they become quickly overwhelmed by the response to full-time remote job ads and end up with hundreds of resumes to sort through. For most hiring managers, this is not a realistic task to tackle; there simply is not enough time in the day to review so many resumes while balancing everything else that needs attention. However, partnering with a recruiter is a great solution for this. At CPSG, we know – and know how to find – the talent that companies need. When engaging in a search, we deliver a pre-vetted slate of the highest qualified candidates to select from so hiring managers can quickly interview and hire. Would you like more information? Click here to connect with us and learn more about how we can assist in your search.
When the pandemic hit, companies were challenged to quickly find solutions to enable them to continue building their teams. Now, with over a year of practice, many have remote hiring streamlined and the benefits are undeniable.
Remote interviews + remote hiring = faster hires and less chance to lose top talent to competitors
Remote onboarding enables companies to act quickly, increasing their speed of hire. Hopping on a quick Zoom call for an interview, to make a job offer, or to complete onboarding is much quicker than scheduling face-to-face time, especially if the candidate is not local. Subsequently, as noted above, a slow-moving hiring process comes at a cost for companies and may deter a candidate’s interest or be surpassed by a competitor’s offer. Speed is essential.
With the geographic freedom that remote hiring provides, skill-based selection is a dominating tech hiring trend of 2021. While a focus on industry experience remains, gone are the days of hiring based on resumes. In the tech world where new languages, technologies, and skillsets are consistently evolving, companies are finding that hiring talent with diversified experience is a powerful tool.
Additionally, companies are making concerted efforts to foster diversity and inclusion. With the protection against racial and gender biases in mind and a focus on hiring employees with more diverse skillsets and perspectives, companies are diversifying their talent.
With the transition to remote work and the stresses of the current circumstances in mind, companies are focusing less on creating exciting office spaces and more on employee personalized perks. When working remotely, what perks will make the most difference for employees? The following is a list of personalized perks in the tech hiring trends of 2021:
- Upskilling through learning and development
- Family care leave
- Pet insurance
- Wellness programs
- Mental health benefits
- Flexible work schedules
- Additional paid time off
- Work-from-home stipends
- Work-from-home office outfitting
- Student loan reimbursement
Likewise, consider this: as a business owner who has opted to implement full-time remote work, what can you do with the resources that you are now saving on the office space that you were leasing? When you offer personalized perks, it will help to set you apart from competitors.
While technical skills remain top of the list for hiring priorities, hiring for soft skills is becoming more prevalent. Soft skills are measured by Emotional Intelligence (“Emotional Quotient” – “EQ”) and studies show that EQ directly affects the ability of an individual to succeed. This is especially true in a remote environment, where professionals are called to work together, build teams, motivate employees, and foster business partnerships without spending time together in person.
Tech hiring trends of 2021 include employers most commonly hiring for the following soft skills:
- Critical thinking
- Creative thinking
- Attention to details
- Customer service
- Project management
When interviewing, including a mix of behavioral and situational interview questions will help to assess soft skills.
PAYING ATTENTION TO RETENTION
When employers pay attention to retention, unnecessary hiring will be avoided. In order to avoid losing valuable employees, take a step back and consider what can be improved or offered to alleviate burnout and emphasize value for your employees. When employees feel valued, engagement increases; when employees are engaged, they are exponentially more likely to remain loyal to their employer.
“Value” can look like many different things and how one feels valued will vary from person to person; however, the following list includes common reasons why employees will consider new opportunities:
- Lack of recognition
- Increased burnout
- Bored or under-challenged
- No growth opportunity
- Lack of benefits or employee perks
- Dissatisfaction with management
- Cuts to salary and/or bonus, or lack of raises
- Suffering morale, negative company culture
Inc.com recently published an article1 that states a jaw-dropping 52% of employees plan to leave their jobs this year. Turnover can be incredibly costly for companies, both in dollars and morale, and has a tremendous trickle effect that can be quite challenging to overcome. Therefore, it is more important now than ever before for employers to pay attention to retention. For more on retention, check out our Q2 Newsletter – Paying Attention to Retention.
Tech leaders, also check out Habits of Successful Technology Leaders for more insight on how to retain your team, including cultivating collaboration, leading empathetically, improving communication, prioritizing learning, and empowering your team.
1 – Inc.com – Half of Employees Plan to Leave Their Jobs This Year