I talk to a lot of employers of IT people often MSPs (Managed Service Providers) and these conversations typically center around what employers are looking for in terms of candidates that are appropriate for their business. Typically, these are the right technical skill sets and the right soft skills, meaning personality/cultural fit, work ethic, persistence/patience, ability to work in a team, and ability to knock things out on their own.
And of course, when it comes to MSPs, the list even gets a little bit more stringent. You must have experience in time-based billing environments, need to have experience looking after multiple clients with different needs and different technology sets, preferably experienced in another similar size MSP.
So, you can end up with quite a large shopping list of the requirements the employer has for candidates for their open positions. And there’s a good reason for this as well. Often employers have tried a range of different candidates and have found through experience the ones that typically work in their environment and the ones that don’t. They will know whether they’ve got the ability to train specific skills in their company or not. They’ll know that some soft skills are trainable, and others (at least for them) are not, and they need to employ people that already have those skills.
Employment though is a two-way street, and so what about the candidates? If you want to attract the best candidates for the role and you have quite a stringent set of non-negotiable’s around soft and hard skills, then you need to be able to be flexible in other areas.
Identify those areas you can be flexible in and confirm that they are attractive to the candidates that you are trying to win over to your business. Ask the question, what are the attractive perks that you can offer your employees that will cause them to want to apply to your open roles?
Fortunately, we now have data on this. Seek have come up with a data dashboard which allows us to interrogate the data of a survey that they do regularly which ask candidates and job-seekers in each different industry what they most look for when applying for roles for jobs in Australia, so we don’t need to guess.
Now, with a bit of slicing and dicing I’ve done some of the hard work for you and come up with the top 3 things that IT candidates are looking for when they apply for IT jobs in Australia as advertised on Seek.
- Salary / Compensation
- Work-life balance
- Career / Development opportunities
So, if your negotiables fall into one of the above categories, then you’re set. You just need to be able to point out really, really clearly how you can offer exceptional benefits within those categories. Specificity is gold in this regard.
More on this in future posts.