IT companies aren’t the only ones struggling to onboard new professionals following the pandemic. As businesses responded to the limitations imposed by the pandemic, their dependence on digital platforms and remote working software likewise increased. Workplace safety requirements have made remote work almost inevitable. This, in turn, has led to a massive pent-up demand for IT talent, encompassing development and maintenance for businesses across all sectors, not just IT companies.
IT talent has undergone the same transformational period as many other sectors of the American workforce. In conjunction, employer expectations have also evolved. It may prove useful to gain a better understanding of these new expectations for better hiring success. Read on to learn more.
Flexible working hours have always attracted candidates, especially for high-pressure roles like development and testing. Over the last two years, this has increasingly become the norm, not the exception. In other words, candidates now prioritize flexible working hours over things like company culture. Edgy office furnishings like beanbags and recreational spaces are always welcome.
But, regardless of contract-to-hire vs direct hire candidates, if given the option between flexible working hours and a fun working environment, most will opt for the former. This is because a large working population has grown accustomed to working from home, and many actually prefer it over conventional workforce models. As a result, IT workers now place flexible working hours higher on the list of priorities.
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Aversion to Communication Gaps
Ineffective or inefficient communication is a concern in any business context. In IT roles including development, maintenance, testing, information security, and others, it can prove catastrophic. In particular, businesses offering IT services to other businesses have to work very tight deadlines. Unnecessary delays, especially those caused by a lack of clarity or gaps in communication, lead to missed deadlines, increased stress, and frustration among workers. These factors play a huge role in worker attrition, especially because miscommunication and its consequences are entirely avoidable. Where workers sense gaps or confusion in the early stages of work, it can create an unfavorable employer perception among them.
Attraction to Skill Development Programs
Many conventional business skills have now become obsolete, and a significant number of conventional roles and the skills associated with them have completely transformed. As the demand for skills and cross-functional employees continues to rise, so does the expectation among candidates for employers to offer skill enrichment and development programs.
The presence of structured programs concerning skill development or enhancement can positively influence a candidate’s decision to accept an offer. But only where the programs are of a meaningful nature.
Expecting a Respectful and Diverse Culture
The Great Resignation is proof enough that stable employment is not enough to retain workers anymore. Where compensation and benefits fail to keep pace with the real world, it precipitates a rise in employee attrition. The situation is no different for employers with biased or discriminatory practices that are out of touch with modern social norms.
Employees expect a culture that promotes diversity and respect, regardless of a worker’s income level, ethnic background, or religious preferences. In companies where discriminatory practices are a topic of discussion, expect a workplace investigation to be forthcoming. Anything less can alienate or disincentivize workers, and further inhibit an employer’s ability to onboard candidates in the future.
Valuing Empathy and Emotional Intelligence
Finally, most workers have outgrown “the grind” philosophy. Serious professionals will always welcome meaningful and challenging work, but a lack of empathy or understanding among workforce managers can put off even the most dedicated of employees. As a general rule, insensitive or inhumane workplaces tend to have the highest rates of worker turnover.
Even in businesses where high turnover rates are the norm, a lack of empathy and support makes it spike even higher. And since workers have professional grapevines of their own, this reputation can quickly take hold among candidate pools. Once that happens, recruiters and staffing partners will encounter more difficulty when sourcing candidates. In non-IT-specific businesses, like mortgage firms requiring IT services, recruiting valuable talent even through a specialized mortgage staffing agency could become very challenging.