IT Recruitment has always been a competitive field, dealing with skills short areas, where experienced candidates are hotly in demand, and to an extent some can almost name their price when it comes to salary figures or hourly rates. But aside from the essential technical skills that we look for when hiring for an IT vacancy, there is an area which has grown in importance for most employers over the past few years, coming from behind to now play a crucial role in deciding if a role is offered or not – Culture Fit/Attitude.
Now this is something which in other areas of business, has been at the forefront for quite some time. Most other business functions look into team fit, how someone will add or detract from the existing culture within a workplace, as well as looking at someone’s ability to grow and develop within a role, adding value across more functions moving forwards. Previously technical recruitment on the other hand, has largely focused on someone’s existing technical abilities, the experiences and environments they had worked within and certifications gained; particularly if you were skilled in a highly specialised area where resources are hard to identify. Here decisions could be made based solely on the hard facts. This is now shifting.
I have worked with numerous organisations now who are emphasizing the need for technical teams to engage more thoroughly with the business. To in some situations take on more traditionally business analysis roles, engaging and explaining technical ideas, and language to different business representatives throughout the course of both project and business as usual work. They are also looking to create a more universal and all-encompassing culture across the business landscape, not leaving IT to those guys in the corner that keep to themselves. The walls that previously existed are being torn down. Businesses are looking for true engagement, for the tech teams to understand at least to some level the business functions around them, and the business functions to gain a greater understanding, and often appreciation for the tech teams. More can be achieved as a cohesive front, rather than fractured units.
There is also, and it may be in response to trying to hire needle in a haystack skill sets, more of an appetite towards hiring based largely on candidates personality and attitude. This is focused on the thought process, skills can be taught, attitude cannot. And with culture playing an ever increasingly important role in the appeal of certain companies to work for over others, as well as making the often long hours we spend at work a huge amount more productive, rewarding and enjoyable, this is hardly surprising. It really is a massive shift in hiring approach, and something that needs to be carefully considered by all parties throughout a hiring process to ensure the best hiring decision is made for all.
Happy Job Hunting!