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As IT job market grows, companies must know what they want

August 21, 2013 | Posted at 10:28 am

The demand for qualified IT staff shows no signs of abating, with a recent survey indicating that the industry sector would continue to remain strong for the rest of the year.

According to figures published by the TechServe Alliance, a non-profit collaboration of IT staffing firms and suppliers, information technology employment has risen by 5.93 percent since July 2012, with nearly 251,500 workers finding employment in the last 12 months

Commenting on the current nature of the IT market, Mark Roberts, the CEO of TechServe Alliance, said that he was pleased to see the sector continue to be “a bright spot” in a recovering economy, while noting that gains recorded in July marked the 23rd consecutive month that IT job placements had increased.

With tech talent reportedly in demand across the country, companies are obviously keen to ensure they attract the right workers to fill the positions required. According to IT BusinessEdge, firms can often fail to secure the staff they need, with outdated IT recruiting practices often seen as being detrimental to the hiring of qualified professionals.

Improving IT recruitment
The news source cited a recent survey by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, which found that companies in the North Star State were struggling to find the workers that they needed, with many of those polled claiming that the so-called talent gap was to blame. However, the report found that firms looking for IT staff often shot themselves in the foot, with the authors of study highlighting several areas where recruiting could be improved.

These included writing overly specific job descriptions, hiring young people to work on old technology and failing to offer competitive wages. The report also revealed that hiring managers were unhappy about the quality of the candidates themselves, with respondents stating that there were either too many IT generalists or that job seekers had varying degrees of experience.

These findings were echoed in a recent article published by Forbes, which highlighted the difficulties in dovetailing available IT staff in with what the company actually wants, needs or can provide. With most new talent now considered to be either a member of Generation Y or a Millennial, high-tech talent expects to be using high-tech equipment or processes.

With that in mind, David Fox, business development director for Xerox Financial Services, noted in the article that many new IT recruits don’t realize how low-tech a firm is until after they have started work, with some companies unable to offer these fledgling employees access to expected technology.

“Tech jobs are abundant and workers (especially Millennials) know it,” he wrote, adding that they “have no problem jumping ship for a more empowering employment experience, which they do.”