Why tech companies should treat recruitment as a new product launch

2 March 2021

When considering recruitment, it’s very easy for businesses to fall into the same trap of repeated patterns: leaning on the same advertising platforms, job boards and relying on company reputation or existing networks to attract the top candidates. However, as we keep saying, the recruitment landscape is fierce right now when it comes to hiring tech talent. Those skilled in tech are the candidates that your competitors, top industry players and businesses looking to digitise their existing models are currently fighting for. This isn’t the time to do the same old thing and hope for the best.

To attract top tech talent to your business in such a crowded market, you need to reconsider your recruitment strategy. Much like launching a new product, your recruitment efforts should be innovative, creative and one step ahead of everyone else. You shouldn’t be half-hearted. From the toolsets you use to your mindset around recruiting, there are many teachings tech businesses can take from product launches and apply them to their recruitment strategy.

Using similar approaches to your consumer marketing strategy for recruitment marketing could help you to stand out in a crowded market, and help you to make more informed hiring decisions. This could result in a better quality of hire, faster times to hire and an improved perception and awareness of your employer brand.

Here are just a few practices and ideas from product strategies that could easily be adapted to your recruitment strategy, helping you to gain an advantage in the war on tech talent:

Research first

You wouldn’t take your tech product to launch without researching your audience first. The same attitude should be applied to your recruitment process. Why advertise a job without first understanding the state of your industry’s recruitment landscape and gaining a perception of your ideal candidates? The best hiring practices are informed by research. Take the time to map talent to find out where they are geographically and what positions these individuals are working in for competing organisations. Gaining an insight into the competition will help you place yourself against leaders in your field for the fight against talent in the same way that learning about the battle for your tech product will show you exactly how to differentiate it when you take it to market.

 Much like market research for products, discover the motivations people have for joining your company; think of both the emotional factors and the tangible benefits you can bring. What can your company offer that is truly unique and will enhance employees’ lives without you trying to compete with big players? Perhaps you could survey your existing employees and candidates after the interview process, as you would with consumer research, to assess what you’re doing well and areas for improvement within your company culture and employer brand.

Experiment

Experimentation is a critical element of software development. Products take time to perfect. Sometimes you’ll get it wrong, and things will need to change, whether it’s usability, function, or messaging and advertising. The same agile attitude should be applied to the recruitment process. Sometimes things will not work for your audience, from candidate experience to recruitment messaging and digital targeting. To attract the right candidates to your scale up you need to be agile and able to adapt strategies. Much like tech products, when recruiting you need to be willing to fix any bugs to gain the best results, and in this case, to attract a higher calibre of candidate. Unless you’re in the great position of attracting your perfect candidate right away, you should constantly monitor your digital efforts and the approach of your recruitment team to identify areas for improvement.

Plus, in such a crowded market, now is the time to think outside of the box and get creative to ensure your recruitment strategies’ best results. Would you launch a tech product that was the same as everyone else’s in the same way as the competition? With so many digital talent attraction techniques to combine with traditional recruitment methods like direct sourcing, there are many recruitment strategies and practices both on and offline that could help you connect with top tech talent. Just like launching a product, you need to be bolder if you want to stand out in the fight for tech talent.

Focus on the user

A good tech product puts the customers’ needs before all else. User experience and user journey should always be a priority, as, without this, your customers will look elsewhere. The candidate experience is equally important. Candidates will be put off from applying to a company if their application process is long-winded, clunky or frustrating, and tech candidates who understand the ins and outs of user experience will be even more selective. As a tech business candidate, the experience should be at the forefront of your mind, and your teams should continuously be striving to improve it. There are no excuses for poor usability if your company specialises in it, and it will directly influence how tech candidates perceive you in the market.

However, candidate experience isn’t just about the tech side. Much like you would nurture customers and give them a great experience after a product launch, you need to ensure candidates can communicate with you quickly and that you do not leave them in the lurch after job applications. In a market where competition is rife, communication with candidates could make the difference in them choosing to take on a role with you or not, much like leaving a customers’ problem unresolved would leave them seeking another tech platform or product.

Consider your marketing

Just like launching an exciting new product, announcing new vacancies at your business should create anticipation and enthusiasm. Much like traditional marketing, you should have a robust, creative and exciting strategy in place to appeal to the best candidates in recruitment marketing. Especially in the current climate, a job advert on Indeed or simple text post on social media could get lost in the noise when recruiting developers, engineers and other tech talent. Digital talent attraction could be a powerful tool when used correctly; but make sure your content is memorable and reflects your brand.

You should also consider the platforms you use for consumer marketing and launching a new product to reach a wider pool of candidates. It’s no surprise that LinkedIn, Indeed and other job boards are highly successful tools for reaching candidates who are actively looking for a job. However, in only using these platforms, you’re severely limiting the number of candidates you can reach. You’re excluding those that aren’t currently in the market for a new role but could be tempted for the right prospect. Instead, traditional consumer-facing digital marketing platforms alongside direct recruitment can help you reach, engage with, and excite passive candidates.

Pipeline hires like customers

If you were building up to the launch of a new product, you’d collect a list of customers ready to contact. This is all part of building anticipation and keeping them in the loop as your product develops and ensures loyalty. Well, the same approach can be made with your recruitment efforts. By pipelining candidates, you can build a network of engaged people who are both passionate about your brand and excited about working with you. You can reach out to this network of candidates with open vacancies to cut your recruitment costs and significantly reduce your hiring time. Much like you’d build a network of engaged and excited customers to contact and keep warm, candidates can be treated in the same respect; keeping in touch with them ensures they remain enthusiastic about and interested in your brand.

At Talent Works, we help scaling tech businesses surround themselves with talented people through employer branding, digital talent attraction, and flexible sourcing capabilities. Our agile approach to RPO means that our recruitment capabilities can be scaled back to suit business growth and changes. With offices in Boston, USA, Northampton and Manchester, UK, we’re an RPO agency that offers a truly global and holistic approach to recruitment. To find out how we can help your business, whether it’s filling urgent tech roles or with a long-term recruitment strategy, contact our team today.

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