Should You Hire a Candidate who Doesn’t Interview Well?

December 28th, 2015

Interviews are part of the hiring process, but that doesn’t mean they should be the only factor in your hiring decision. Particularly for technical positions, you should rely on other factors besides interviewing skills when deciding to make an offer. After all, you aren’t hiring the candidate to answer interview questions. You’re hiring them to write or test code or perform other technical tasks. Communications skills may not matter as much as their technical ability. Use these other ways to judge whether they can do the job:

  1. Ask them to solve a problem. Answering technical questions doesn’t demonstrate the practical abilities the candidate has nearly as well as having them solve an actual problem. Ask them to write some code, design a database schema, or write a test case. Step out of the room and let them work on the problem the way they would if it was really their job. You could even have them tackle a real problem from your current project. After they finish writing the code, schema, or test case, go over it with them. If it’s perfect, that’s great. But almost nobody’s work is perfect. See how the candidate reacts to suggestions or questions about how to improve it. This will give you a sense of what they’ll be like to work with as team members.
  1. Take references seriously. These days, many employers won’t let references do more than confirm that the candidate once worked for them, but try to get more information from the reference than that. You want to find out about the projects the candidate worked on and the problems they solved. The more details you can get about the nature of the work and the way the job seeker tackled the challenges, the more you can get a feel for whether they would fit well in your organization.
  1. Consider their involvement in technical organizations or continuing education. If the candidate is involved in technical organizations or continuing education, that suggests a commitment to remaining technically current. Would your department benefit if the candidate shared this knowledge with the team?

Interviews are important, but they’re just one source of information during the hiring process. Work with  InReach IT Solutions to make sure candidates are fully evaluated and you end up with a great new employee.

Planning Your 2016 Hiring Strategy

December 18th, 2015

As you plan to address your hiring needs for 2016, look back at your hiring process in 2015 to see what worked and what didn’t, and to make adjustments so that your 2016 hiring is successful. Think about these questions and consider making changes where needed.

  1. Did you define job responsibilities clearly? It’s impossible to find the right person for the job if you can’t clearly say what they’ll need to do in the job. Take the time to define exactly what the role will be. Make sure you evaluate all candidates equally against these requirements to find the best fit.
  1. Did you make the hiring decisions by yourself? Once you’re a manager with the ability to make hiring decisions, your hands-on time with technology diminishes and so does your ability to assess technical qualifications. Be sure to have candidates evaluated by other members of your team who are closer to the technical work. And since your team will probably work more closely with the new hire than you will, listen to their input about the candidate’s interpersonal skills. It’s also important to check the candidate’s references; don’t settle for verifying dates of employment, but also verify the candidate’s competence.
  1. Is it taking too long to hire new staff? Did you fill all your positions this past year quickly, easily, and with the right people, or did you struggle, leaving positions unfilled for a long time? If you found it difficult to hire, you may have been looking in the wrong places, or you may not be offering the competitive salaries and benefits needed to attract candidates as the job market heats up.
  1. What are you doing to retain staff? The more staff you retain, the less you have to hire replacements. Pay attention to your staff morale. Take individual development planning seriously, and work with each team member to evaluate where they are and where they want to go. Understand what your staff values—respect, money, recognition, challenge—and deliver it so they have no reason to go elsewhere in search of rewards.

Need help with your hiring in 2016? Work with InReach IT Solutions to make sure next year’s new employees meet your staffing needs.

Hiring Top IT Talent in Dallas-Fort Worth

December 14th, 2015

Finding top technical talent has always been challenging, but in the second half of 2015, it’s getting even tougher for employers in Dallas-Fort Worth. Almost 1/4 of hiring companies reported that they plan to do additional hiring, specifically to expand their IT teams. Another 2/3 said they would fill open positions, while 0 percent—zero—said they would cut staff. That means when companies need to find new employees, not only are they competing with a large number of other companies to attract job seekers, there will be fewer people seeking jobs due to staff reductions.

Demand is expected to be especially high for network and windows administrator jobs, as well as PC support staff. On the developer side, projects related to security and website development will be the focus for many business IT teams.

The Benefits of Working With a Staffing Agency

Because of the competition to find the best candidates in this job market, companies that work with specialized staffing firms will have an advantage in recruiting. Staffing agencies know how to word job descriptions and make them appealing; they know where and how to publicize them so the right technical workers will see them.

The staffing agencies have large networks and relationships with candidates, including those they’ve placed previously who might be open to making a move. The agencies are also skilled at identifying new candidates through effective searching on sites like LinkedIn and in-person recruiting at events. They have the time to woo passive job seekers and turn them into an active candidate. Agencies are able to screen candidates and send only the most qualified to an employer, reducing wasted time during the interviewing process.

Staffing agencies specializing in IT recruiting can help the employer understand the current job market and create reasonable expectations regarding how long it will take to fill a position and the type of candidates on the market. Agencies have knowledge of market salaries and benefits that employers may lack; sharing this information can help the employer make a competitive offer to win a candidate.

The Benefit of Working With InReach IT Solutions

InReach IT Solutions is a boutique staffing agency focused on information technology hiring in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex area. With more than 20 years experience in IT and recruiting, we have the expertise to find the specialized IT talent organizations need. In today’s competitive hiring market, our expertise could be the competitive advantage that helps you fill your staffing needs. Contact us to learn how we can help.

How Contract Employees Can Help Your IT Team

December 11th, 2015

The start of the year can be an uncertain time in business. Project commitments and budgets for the new year may not be final yet, while work may have missed end-of-year deadlines and carried forward to the new year. Departments that are struggling to cope with the challenge of high volumes of work in the first quarter may find temporary help to be an ideal solution.

Catch Up on Deadlines

If you missed deadlines at the end of the year, adding temporary staff can help you get back on top of your projects. Contract employees can bring specialized skills your team was missing, enabling you to solve problems the team was struggling with. Alternatively, bringing in contractors with basic skill sets can free your team from grunt work and let them focus on the value-added functions that require the business knowledge only long-term employees have. In either scenario, using contractors means there’s no long-term commitment on your part, so once the project’s back on track, they can be let go without any hard feelings on either side.

Get a Jump on New Projects

If you have projects line up for the new year that need to be staffed and can’t afford to wait to bring on new permanent hires, using contractors lets you build an IT team quickly so the project can start without delay. You can continue to search for appropriate permanent employees without the pressure of hiring somebody, anybody, just to get work started. You can also avoid the risk of adding permanent staff until you have management’s final commitment to the project and know it won’t be canceled just as you bring on new developers.

Keep Budgets and Headcount Under Control

Not every company has budgets and headcount for the new year finalized at the beginning of January. If you aren’t certain how many resources you’ll be able to support in the coming year, using contractors gives you flexibility to adapt when changes occur. If you do have final headcount and budget numbers, and they’re lower than you requested, using contract employees can be more cost-effective, as you don’t have to factor in the cost of benefits.
Whether you want to hire permanent staff or use contract employees on a temporary basis, working with a staffing agency is the most efficient way to find the right people for your team. Contact InReach IT Solutions to find out how we can help you solve your staffing problems.