Should You Hold Out for a Better Candidate?

October 30th, 2015

Most management decision making is about making tradeoffs: comparing the risk to the reward and deciding which direction you should move in — or whether you should move at all. This is true of hiring decisions, too. There are costs to hiring the wrong person, as well as costs to leaving a position unfilled too long while you search for a better candidate. We’ve previously talked about why you should avoid the “perfect hire” mentality and “settle” for the best candidate you’ve seen. Most of the time, that’s a sensible decision. But sometimes it really does make sense to hold off on hiring, and continue to look for someone even better.

  1. Your need isn’t urgent. If you’re ramping up staffing for a project that hasn’t started yet, or are looking for a replacement for someone who’s announced they’re retiring in six months, you have time on your side. Because there isn’t pressure to just bring in a warm body already, you can continue looking to find the ideal employee. Just keep the project start or retirement date in mind. It’s easy to lose track of time and find yourself in a crunch — even if the search wasn’t urgent when you started.
  1. There isn’t time for the candidate to grow into the position. There are times when you can’t find someone with all the skills you need, and you hire someone you hope will grow into the position. Not all projects offer the luxury of time for someone to grow; there are times when someone just has to hit the ground running. In those situations, you can’t afford to hire a candidate who doesn’t clearly demonstrate that they’re currently capable of doing the job.
  1. You can’t handle the consequences of a bad hiring decision. If you hire the wrong individual, you’ll have to deal with the impact of that on your team and your project. At some companies, the internal procedures for terminating an employee are complex and time consuming. If the candidate doesn’t work out, you might be stuck with them for months before you can even start to look for another new hire. There may be less impact on the project if you wait for a better candidate to come along.

InReach IT Solutions wants to help you find the best candidate for your open positions. Contact us to find out how our services can help meet your staffing needs.

Social Media and Your Company

October 23rd, 2015

Does your company look at a potential candidates’ social media profiles? Many companies do. So it shouldn’t surprise you to learn it works the other direction too: Candidates look at companies online to learn about them and decide whether it would be a good place to work. To make sure your company makes a good impression, you need to look at your online presence through a job seeker’s eyes.

Your Own Website

Start by looking at your own website, specifically the “careers” section. It’s important that the site makes it easy for candidates to search and apply for jobs, but if that’s all that’s available, you’re missing out on an important recruiting tool. Go beyond just listing your open jobs. Describe your company culture, values, and benefits, so job seekers have reasons to want to work for you. Make it real by adding videos showing real employees at work, and let them talk about why your company’s a great place to work. If they have genuine excitement about the company, that will come through and be appealing to job seekers.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a great place for you to search for candidates; your own LinkedIn page should appeal to job seekers who have searched for you. Like your own website, don’t limit yourself to posting open jobs. Use it as a platform to sell your company culture.

Take advantage of your employees who are on LinkedIn, as well as your company page. Encourage your employees to have LinkedIn profiles that include their current position with you. They can let their network know you are hiring. They may be contacted directly by job seekers who find them on LinkedIn, so be sure they know how to respond when that happens.

Facebook and Twitter

Facebook and Twitter are more casual mediums. Facebook lets you sell your brand in more general terms — you usually wouldn’t focus too much on careers here. On Twitter, you keep things brief out of necessity. Tweet job postings and direct candidates to your site or LinkedIn to get more info. If your employees are active on Facebook or Twitter, they can post job announcements to their own pages to get the word out.

InReach IT Solutions uses our social media savvy – plus traditional recruiting methods – to find top quality job candidates.  Contact us to find out how our services can help meet your staffing needs.

Top Soft Skills to Look for in IT Talent

October 16th, 2015

Just because a software developer can write code that compiles cleanly the first time around doesn’t mean they’re the right fit for your open position. There’s more to IT jobs than technical competence. Most technical work is done as part of a team, which means leadership, followership, and interpersonal skills are also needed on a daily basis. Look for the following soft skills when you assess a technical job candidate:

  • Communication.

Technical workers need to be able to communicate clearly with their technical peers, their management, and end users. Written communication skills are as important as verbal, due to the need to write technical documentation. If communication will be a major part of the job, asking the candidate to give a presentation as part of the interview process is helpful.

  • Problem solving.

Whether designing an application or resolving a production issue, technical jobs are about coming up with solutions. Ask the candidate to work through a real problem your team has encountered. The specific solution they come up with isn’t as important as the approach they take to solving it.

  • Business knowledge.

Technical knowledge will help the IT team build the solution right, but it’s business knowledge that will help make sure the right solution is built. The more your IT team understands about your business needs, the more effectively the technical solutions they implement will satisfy them.

  • Motivation.

The ideal employee cares about more than just their paycheck. They care about making a contribution, getting the job done, and making sure it’s done well. Motivated employees will step outside their job description when necessary to solve a problem. They’ll push through when schedules are tight, to make sure the project gets completed.

  • Adaptability.

Technology changes quickly, so you want your employees to be eager to keep their technical skills up-to-date. Most technical workers want to use the latest technologies, so that’s not usually a problem. More difficult is the ability to adapt to nontechnical changes. When business priorities change, resulting in changes in project priorities, that can be frustrating to IT staff. Look for job candidates who will be able to take these changes in stride, and contribute their best – even when things change.

InReach IT Solutions assesses candidates for both their technical and soft skills to make sure they can do the job.  Contact us to find out how our services can help meet your staffing needs.

Ready for a Career Change?

October 9th, 2015

Announcing our new career site!

InReach IT Solutions is excited to announce our new career site, www.inreachitsolutionscareer.com, devoted to helping job seekers find their next opportunity.

The site’s career portal goes beyond simply listing jobs for you to search. The portal is designed to help you, even if you’re looking for a job in a niche we don’t serve, or if we don’t have any current positions suited to you. The functionality on the career portal will help you in your job search, no matter your skill level or industry.

Registration on the Career Portal is free. Once registered, job seekers have access to a variety of features to improve their job search. Of course, there’s a job search function. Weekly webinars offer tips for improving your resume, upgrading your LinkedIn profile, and effective interviewing. The library is filled with resources to help you succeed in your current job or advance to a new one.

Even better, the career portal provides interactive tools to help find the best job for you, in the shortest time. Whether you need help assessing your interests to find a suitable career, assistance writing and improving your resume, or access to technology trade publications to help buff your skills, you’ll find what you need on our site.

When you’re actively searching for a job, the career portal’s Search and Connect features will help develop your marketing skills. Like it or not, looking for a job is about selling yourself, a skill many job seekers lack. Use our tools to learn how to network effectively. The site even lets you print resume cards — like a business card with a mini version of your resume. This is a great tool to hand out in networking situations!

It’s easy to feel overwhelmed when making a career change. There’s a lot of content on the Career Portal, and to help you make the most of it, the Site Map breaks it down for you into a three-phase process. We’re excited to present this free resource to all job seekers and hope you find it valuable in achieving your ambitions. Don’t hesitate to contact us to learn more about our career portal or the many other ways InReach can help you achieve your career goals.