The Montreal technology market is extremely competitive when it comes to talent. There just aren’t enough people to meet the demands of all the organizations in the city. With this problem not going anywhere my suggestion is to look at how you attract talent to your team and organization. Through my experience I have gained knowledge on what professionals look for in an opportunity. This is why I’d like to take the time to examine how to build your organization’s hiring strategy.
Why you need a strategy
Even with Covid forcing many organizations to let go of employees there is still a big demand for professionals in tech. It hasn’t taken long for most of those people to find new roles. As for companies that are hiring, they are still finding it difficult to find talent. Before this crisis the unemployment rate in Canada for Tech was close to 2% which is typically around 3% below the average unemployment rate. The government is also giving many advantages to start-ups and companies to bring their technology operations here. This is all great news for Canada but will create problems for people looking to hire.
With this in mind any company that isn’t creating a strategy to attract people will struggle. This is a competitive market and just as your product or service has its competitive advantage you need to create that for your employees as well. This will arm your team and partners to be able to go into the market and attract top talent to your organization.
Where do you start?
When figuring out any strategy it’s best to understand what the end goal is. For hiring strategy, you just need to understand what type of culture you have and who fits into that culture. This can be vastly different for organizations and is important to remember. I worked with 2 organizations for a good part of my career and although their tech stacks were similar the type of individual they hired was vastly different. One organization was focused on technology and they wanted the best technical people to take on complex technical problems. Another was using technology to drive their business forward and was looking for people who could deliver quickly and meet business needs.
Each organization had their own approach to meeting their goals and wanted to attract vastly different people to make it happen. By understanding who it is you want to attract you can build a plan catered to their needs.
Building your strategy
For most organizations they have benefits and perks picked out to meet the needs of their people. Obviously, they can always be improved upon but might already be interesting to get the right people on your team. Where I find almost every organization fails, is their ability to let people know about those perks. Since people today have short attention spans you need to capture their interest and quickly. Here is how you can go about building your strategy.
Partner with your HR team
It starts by understanding what their strategy is to attract talent to the organization. Often times there is a gap in communication, and it leads to poor strategies and a lack of information. There needs to be better communication in understanding what you offer in order to bring the right person forward. If you aren’t communicating with your partners, then your strategy is almost guaranteed to fail. In order to build the right strategy, they need to be involved from day 1. Each team within an organization could have a point of interest and is important to communicate that with your talent acquisition.
What makes your organization different?
You need to understand what makes you different and why people will want to join your team. The reality is that most organizations offer flexible work schedules, fair market compensation and health benefits. Another example I’ve seen way too often is the promise of new technology and technical challenges. These won’t allow you to stand out, so taking them more in depth will help differentiate you. You need to elaborate on how you will offer those factors and what it looks like in your organization. One example might be an internal hackathon where the winner gets budget and a team to help turn their idea into reality. Building up your story on why they should join your team is key to a great hiring strategy.
One of the most asked questions I get when meeting with clients is around compensation for a skill set. Everyone wants to know how they measure up to the market and if they need to adjust it. Compensation packages can be one of the trickiest pieces of bringing on people. You are looking to create equity within your organization while trying to attract people to join you. My suggestion is building a total package that include salary, bonuses, vacation, stock options and other incentives. Having many different options and being flexible can help you cater your package to any individual. What I mean by this is everyone has different needs and wants based on their personal life. For some the ability to get more vacation might outweigh salary. So by offering more vacation but lower salary you keep equity while still enticing a candidate to join.
This means it starts by understanding what each candidate wants and adjusting the package to meet their needs. Compensation should also be consistently reviewed and adjusted as it changes in the Montreal market almost as quickly as technology does. It typically isn’t the most important thing, but it does matter and being flexible can help get you the right talent while keeping equity within the team. It’s also critical in keeping your talent, you shouldn’t be afraid to increase salary of your current team either.
Sell your differentiators
It’s not only important to have things that make you different but to let them be known as well. Way too many companies rely on generic job descriptions posted on their site in order to attract talent. As a 3rd party agency I’ve been given them countless times and asked to find someone for the role. They simply don’t work as people have short attention spans and they all sound so similar.
My success in finding talent has always come from understanding why people would join their team and being able to deliver that message to candidates. Organizations need to do a better job of making people aware of their benefits before they even apply on their site.
One thing many companies don’t realize is how much your hiring process might hurt your ability to attract talent. It’s not only the speed of the interview process but the impact as well. Your reputation on the market can be severely impacted if you don’t provide feedback or a great experience. Treating people with respect even if they aren’t a fit can help in getting the right people.
When building a strategy, it’s important to highlight what makes your organization great. By showing what your culture and people have to offer it can help in bringing in people to help drive your cause. That is how to build your organization’s hiring strategy in 2020.
How avansai can help
Having worked with organizations in different sectors we are experts in creating hiring strategies. You can reach out here to connect with an advisor to help create a strategy that fits your needs.