IT professionals like programmers, software engineers, product managers and data scientists are very sought-after. Far too much, since CareerBuilder mentioned that 45% of the open positions in the US can not be filled. Also in Europe, especially in the Nordic countries such as Sweden, Finland and Denmark, they experience a problem of software developers shortage. But what are the reasons for such situation? And which could be possible solution scenarios? Let’s have a look!
Degree holders: a must or not?
Among other reasons, many point the finger at education. As Latribune.fr states, French recruiting experts say that there is a genuine problem in education: there are too few students attending tech-specific high education, thus there is a big lack of degree holders. On the contrary, the dependence on university graduates to fill open tech positions has to be a thing of the past – says Jeff Mazur, the Executive Director of LaunchCode. With universities producing less than 40.000 computer science graduates a year in the US – he continues – it’s quite clear traditional education pathways simply do not, and will not, produce the amount of tech talent needed to keep up with industry demands. Glassdoor adds that by 2026 over 250,000 new software developer positions will be created. One solution to that is that education becomes shorter, easier, cheaper and more accessible. In alternative, the hiring process could become more skills-based. Many of today’s young programmers are self-taught or learned their skills at a bootcamp. Hiring an entry-level talent and trusting him to get acquainted with the skills that are needed in the company, could be worth the experiment. Additionally, mentorship can be offered to keep up motivation.
Men still rule the (tech-) world
Another interesting fact is that being tech-proficient is still very male. If women all around the world are increasingly entering the job market, be it out of developing countries or after parenthood pauses: why not targeting women and attracting them to the sector? Starting from education and then applying to headhunting campaigns. This could be a further approach to solve the problem of a candidate market’s shortage.
Passive job seekers
Furthermore, an important question has to be asked : where are actually the so-wanted IT professionals? The answer is easy: they already have a job. They are passive and they can not be found on job boards. They need to be headhunted in communities like tech forums, websites or on tech events. Not to mention that tech events could be organized by the hiring company itself; that could be even more efficient. It certainly won’t solve the shortage problem, but it could fill a(n) (urgent) short term gap.
There is a lot that can be done
To conclude, an efficient tech professional’s career marketing is anyway a must. The objective is, among others, to valorize the job and to make the role important. This can go from an attractive graphic design in the hiring ad material to eye- and ear-catching phrases. Here is an example of a very appealing way by IBM to talk to potential future tech employees, followed by a really creative way to catch the attention of software developers:
Further creative recruitment campaigns are for example launched by Google, that puts up a huge unsolved problem. So does Uncle Grey, that covers a computer game with recruitment posters. Or simply create a captivating video, as previously reported in this post.
To summarize, searching for a scapegoat for one’s problem is not always the best way to find a solution. However, identifying the reasons for a situation can be helpful. After that, it is time to get down to serious recruitment work and be creative, innovative, hard-working and efficient – just as you would do with your product!