Technology Talent Shortages

Where are all the technology candidates? With border closures and lockdowns affecting the supply and demand of Australia’s tech talent, we’ve been working with our clients on a few strategies to address the skills shortage. But it’s not an isolated problem.

Some 83 percent of businesses are struggling to find workers with the right skillsets, according to the Society for Human Resource Management. 

Spoiler: There’s no silver bullet fix or everyone would be doing it. But there are a few different things you can do to change the way you approach talent shortages in your business.

1. Shift focus to hire transferrable skills

If hard skills are in such short supply, can you try shifting focus to hire for transferable skills and values- and culture-fit instead? Building teams who’re united by their sense of purpose, enthusiasm, and potential to succeed can provide enormous benefits to your company.

Employers can do themselves a disservice when they obsess about hiring their perfect unicorn candidate. But diversifying the skills you most value over the years of experience demonstrated could open you up to connect with better fits for improved engagement and retention. 

Hire for potential and train for growth. Adam Higgins speaks about this in more detail in his recent blog about business analysts. This advice isn't niche specific.

2. Upskill current employees

With better workforce planning and internal mobility strategies, employers could be taking advantage of their existing employees by training and upskilling to fill gaps. Not only is this a great way to build internal capabilities, but by investing in your people and supporting their career development, you’re likely to increase loyalty and retention.

3. Improve employee loyalty and retention

Replacing a star employee can cost a business two to three times the outgoing worker’s annual salary. That’s not necessarily factoring in the loss of knowledge, though. Retention should be on your agenda to make sure you’re not going to be losing highly skilled employees in a market that makes them difficult to replace.

Consider your culture and benefits. How do your employees feel about working for you? 

You may need to consider ‘temperature checking’ employee sentiment and acting on any feedback quickly to remain a desirable option. Because… there are options.

We’re seeing a rise in tech contract rates and salaries, so if you can’t compete with higher pay, you’ll want to make sure you’re an irresistible workplace worthy of sticking around for. 

4. Invest in your employer brand

It’s a competitive employment market and in-demand candidates are looking for more than just a paycheck. Most will be looking for a place to connect with and belong. 

Your employer brand and candidate experience play a huge role in how you’re perceived during the initial attraction stage through to offers. So, your story, mission, benefits, and culture need to sing a sweet melody that stands out in the market to attract high-quality, values-aligned talent.

That’s why we’ve created a team of employer branding specialists to help our clients compete as aspirational employers of choice. Employer brand is naturally linked with the success of these other 3 strategies.

If you want us to help you answer the question, “Where am I going to find tech talent?” - contact me, Henry Gatehouse, here.