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8 Biggest Challenges Tech Recruiters Face in 2023

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In 2023, tech recruiters are watching their competitors snatch top talent. They also compete with job seekers’ shifting priorities. These priorities are encouraging digital leaders to become more proactive. They are aligning their people strategy with their business strategy, expanding their talent pool, and making new efforts to understand employees’ wants.

Yet, they are also weighing economic factors. While tech recruiters realize the demand for tech solutions and products will persevere, they are still dealing with persistent hiring challenges from the previous year and an abundance of new ones.

1. Evaluating Skills

Tech leaders need a highly skilled workforce to keep up with the pace of change within the digital environment. The World Economic Forum reports that technological advancements will radically transform numerous jobs. Globalization and COVID-19-related industry shifts will also make an impact. The international organization warned that core skills for many jobs would change in 2022, and if trends like this continue, outdated education will worsen the skills mismatch.

Currently, employers are taking steps to align their workforce with their business objectives. They are identifying their company’s critical skills and assessing skill needs to expand and retain talent. This clarity can help them determine gaps, overlaps, training, and pathways to progression so employees can quickly and easily transition to high-skilled roles. As a result, they are reskilling and upskilling their employees. In addition, they are having recruiters focus less on degrees and more on skills during the hiring process.

2. Employee Retention

Employers are still finding ways to mitigate the impact of the Great Resignation and quiet quitting. Workers are still leaving their jobs at a steady rate due to an unpleasant work environment or burnout. And, if they aren’t quitting, they are doing their work at the bare minimum. This type of low engagement costs the world economy $7.8 billion, according to Gallup’s State of the Global Workplace: 2022 Report.

Employers are responding using an old method but with a new name, “quiet hiring,” which means tech recruiters don’t have to look outside the company for promising talent. Instead, they are helping to fill jobs internally. They identify workers doing their regular job and taking on additional tasks related to a vacant position. Ultimately, the employee gets promoted, and the employer saves money on hiring and training costs.

Tech recruiters can ask more questions about a job candidate’s motivations and career goals during the hiring process to help improve employee retention. They can also gather actionable feedback from current employees, such as employee satisfaction surveys.

3. Economic Uncertainty

Business executives are attempting to navigate an uncertain economic environment. Members of the National Association for Business Economics participating in a January 2023 survey gauged the likelihood of a recession at more than 50 percent. The volatility has produced predictions ranging from a recession to robust growth. Despite persistent high inflation, supply chain bottlenecks, and rising commodity and energy prices, the economy has experienced substantial gains. For example, consumer spending started the year off strong.

Some tech companies are slowing the pace of hiring and moving around resources in response to the uncertainty and hoping to stay resilient. A survey of CFOS, C-Suite executives, and managers that CFO.com shared revealed that nearly all of the respondents planned to make budget cuts. Three out of five anticipated reducing costs associated with hiring and retaining talent despite critical first-quarter hiring needs. Business managers are considering cost-effective learning strategies, such as mentorships, to position workers so they are adequate for present needs and well-positioned for future roles.

Tech recruiters can continue to hire the best talent with the best skills. Some are doing this by changing their hiring approach and hiring contractors.

4. Diversity and Inclusion

Diversity and inclusion remain a priority for new hires. More than a third of participants responding to a McKinsey Global Survey revealed that they didn’t pursue a job because they believed the organization lacked an inclusive workplace. They also wanted to see employers advance diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Some suggestions they shared included holding conversations recognizing the need for inclusion, taking action that improves efforts and behaviors, and setting goals for underrepresented groups in recruitment, succession planning, and sponsorship programs.

More management teams are taking note. In 2020, companies worldwide spent an estimated $7.5 billion on diversity, equity, and inclusion, which is projected to double by 2026, according to the Global Parity Alliance. However, the cross-industry group committed to advancing DEI also noticed that the pace could be faster even though progress is occurring. So, it launched the DEI Lighthouse Programme to promote DEI initiatives. It is an annual effort to find and equip leaders with DEI best practices.

5. Right Technology Tools

Rapid technological transformations may leave several business leaders wondering whether their tech tools are enough. Advanced technologies can support new strategies, practices, and innovation from new hires. However, inadequate tech tools pave the way for cybersecurity risks and compliance issues and limit the company’s competitive advantage. As these leaders analyze business issues and process improvements, some realize that their disparate systems limit their strategic responses and business updates.

The massive technological changes are also creating shifts within industries that are helping to expand and accelerate a business’ capabilities and processes. These changes support remote hiring, workflows, upskilling opportunities, and skills assessments.

Employers can consider conducting an IT audit to assess the effectiveness of current technology tools and their ability to minimize business risks. They can also establish the business’s requirements criteria to help make informed purchasing decisions.

6. Remote Work

Employers still have difficulty getting workers to return to the office despite a tight labor market. However, workers are now more accustomed to having a flexible work schedule. This change has eased their work-life balance and supported their mental well-being. As a result, they have made remote work options a top priority in their job search.

Remote work is here and will likely stay since it offers numerous employee and employer benefits. For instance, Companies shore up overhead costs and see improved performance. A 2022 survey conducted by The Harris Poll for Express Employment Professionals found that three in five businesses found that remote work positively impacted the company and didn’t harm their efforts. In addition, business leaders see more engagement and job satisfaction.

Tech recruiters will need to pay attention to how job candidates discuss their work style during the hiring process and take note of flexible work preferences, which will allow them to sweeten the deal when making a job offer.

7. Compensation and Benefits Package

Workers emphasize when, where, and how they work during the hiring process. As a result, employers are finding that it’s critical to demonstrate the value of the employee with their compensation and benefits package. It supports not only recruitment but retention. The package enables recruiters the agility to meet workers’ needs. If they cannot meet one factor like a high wage, they can compensate with another incentive, such as more paid time off.

Some companies are letting employees determine their pay package, for instance, choosing cash and stock options. However, employers can revisit and refresh their benefits on an ongoing basis and help employees maximize their use when they make significant changes due to life events, such as marriage or childbirth.

8. Competition Outside of the Tech Sector

According to a Handshake Network Trends report, recent college graduates are anxious yet optimistic about their job prospects. The respondents, mostly business and tech majors, sought stability and salary as their top priorities. In addition, members of the class of 2023 applied for jobs sooner. They also kept an eye on Big Tech layoffs. Many graduates expanded their job search to reach other industries and sectors. Recruiters welcome them by looking past the student’s major or school and more at underlying transferable skills that match specific business needs.

The recent tech company layoffs, hiring freezes, and downscaled recruiting efforts have flooded the job market with tech talent, and companies in industries needing their digital skills, such as healthcare, are set to benefit. Some are scooping up top tech talent to help modernize business functions and processes and harness data to improve their services. Tech workers also see advantages; they can broaden their expertise and skill set by solving new types of problems.

Some tech recruiters pick up new talent and shape new ones by not requiring a four-year college degree. It’s a result of many tech companies’ efforts to fast-pace the hiring process and erase the supply-demand imbalance. Some have added apprenticeship programs and have partnered with community colleges.

After a series of economic, social, and political shifts, business leaders understand the need to stay agile. As a result, they are skirting labor issues with strategies to enhance talent sourcing and placing and placing more focus on aspects like culture, compensation, and work-life balance. Likewise, tech recruiters are navigating the talent acquisition challenges and heeding the people-first effort to produce an efficient hiring process that yields results.