Help, FiSe – we need to get a developer, stat!

“Help us, FiSe, where can I find a developer, quick?!
Screen name: desperate – been running on 0 lines of code for a month & we’re rapidly burning through our funds here…”

Hey, great to meet you “desperate”…

Don’t worry, you’re not alone. According to recent research, Finland currently has a talent deficit of about 10,000 IT professionals, with the talent deficit projected to rise to as many as 50,000 professionals over the next decade (figures from TEKES). Pretty insane numbers, right?

To solve your problem and get yourself the right talent at the right time, you have two main recruitment options to choose from depending on whether your recruitment needs are sporadic or ongoing.

If you occasionally recruit developers, programmers, or other IT professionals (10 per annum max), and do not have your own recruitment team, I would recommend using an external recruitment consultant. 

Direct search is usually the best way to attract candidates in this niche, as these people are invariably already employed. Using an external partner tends to pay for itself: good direct search consultants already have the required networks in place, understand the talent segment and their needs, and know how to match the right people to your organization.

When choosing a direct search partner, make sure the partner specializes in IT, software development, and other software professionals. Specialization helps attract the right sort of talent. Direct search companies that specialize in the IT industry understand developers and can talk candidates through the features of your organization that are most relevant to them. This will all help to actively build and enhance your employer brand.

Choosing a good recruitment partner is important because direct search is not just about finding the right expert, but about ultimately selling and marketing your organization to the entire industry. Think about it: by the time a recruiter has contacted 50-70 good candidates on your behalf and told them about your organization, they’re not only talking to your future talent pipeline, but your future clientbase as well! 

If your recruitment needs are more extensive and need to satisfy an ongoing and continuous demand for talent, then you need to implement a talent attraction strategy. A good talent attraction strategy supports business objectives, defines your core talent profiles, and creates an attractive employer brand for these profiles. 

For example, if you know that you need Java coders with a good understanding of the financial sector, you need to think about what it is exactly that your organization can offer these people? What is your specific employee value proposition? Document key candidate profiles, identify your core comms channels and messages, create an employer branding strategy, and start implementing it. Plus, go ahead and identify the top 200 people you want to talk to directly and build them a personal pathway that ends up with them working at your organization! 

Recruitment benefits from the same inbound-outbound marketing methods adopted by sales & marketing. You need to know your target audience, make sure that they know you, ensure that you have a brand that appeals to them, and get them thinking about you as a viable employer. Typically, this might consist of about 10-20 employer touchpoints ranging from social media content to in-person events. 

Who gets all this done?

You may well do all of this yourself if your organization is lucky enough to have an experienced Talent Acquisition Lead or VP Talent Acquisition in post – someone who is aligned with the overall business strategy and understands the talent market. Or you may want to consider hiring an external partner. The benefit of using an external partner is that they can see your organization through the eyes of an outsider and can help sharpen and polish up your unique selling points!

To summarize, dear “desperate”, weigh up these two options in function of your own recruitment needs. Outsource your entire IT recruitment to a good partner and reap the benefits quickly, or embark on building a future-proof talent attraction strategy that will bring in results for months and years to come. Create your strategy yourself if you feel like you’ve got the required expertise in-house, use an external partner for 100% of the work, or get in a partner to provide you with some outside perspective and direction. We tend to find that the biggest benefits come from adopting a hybrid model from day one, reaping the benefits of both strategies side-by-side.

Hopefully you’re feeling a little bit more positive about finding developers now! But if you are still in the need of some direct search or talent attraction strategy help from FiSe, drop Saku a line!