Friday, September 22, 2023

How to attract in-demand talent as a tech startup?

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By Terry Tateossian, co-founder of Socialfix MediaMIT blockchain and AI-certified consultant, speaker and activist.

The talent crisis tech companies are grappling with isn’t just about web or software developers. The workforce shortage is felt across the IT sector, from network management and cybersecurity to analytics and data services. While the talent crisis isn’t new, tech workers are increasingly quitting what should be a safe job. The reasons are many and varied. A study of TalentLMS reveals that tech workers are considering leaving due to inflexible work hours (40%), limited career advancement opportunities (41%) and a toxic work environment (39%). Other common reasons for leaving work include burnout (reported by 58%), lack of remote options (33%) and focusing more on recruiting than investing in existing staff (75%).

Companies are increasingly aware that they are at risk of losing technical talent. Those who can afford it give double-digit pay raises or offer hiring bonuses to attract top talent. Others look for ways to create an attractive work environment or encourage employees through knowledge-sharing meetings and educational sessions. Whether it’s adding incentives or pay increases, companies are trying to make jobs more attractive in an effort to fill some of the most in-demand positions, ranging from data scientist to software and web developer.

Data Scientists

In the big data world we live in, a growing number of companies are eager to turn data into actionable insights and advance their digital strategy. By embracing data science, startups can accelerate, predict market trends and gain meaningful insights into their customers and products.

However, the skilled talent market is tight and demand is expected to grow by 28% by the end of 2022. Companies, including big names like Facebook, Google and Amazon that can offer six-figure salaries, stocks and/or a range of project options, are competing to hire and retain talent. Offering a competitive salary is essential, but small businesses can do more to win the battle for talent. Remote working options, flexible hours, a work-friendly environment, and continuing education opportunities are some of the benefits that startups can offer to attract talent. Flexibility, in particular, is a winning strategy to attract data science talent that is often under a lot of pressure. Extracting insights from unstructured data can be time consuming and complex, one reason why employees need the ability to work flexibly and at a place and time that suits them best.

Software developers

In recent years there has been an enormous increase in demand for software engineers. Given technology trends such as machine learning, artificial intelligence (AI), quantum computing and hyperautomation, the demand for software developers is expected to continue. In reality, BLS data shows that the employment of testers, quality assurance analysts and software engineers will grow by 25% by 2031.

Software developers are also in-demand talent in tech startups. This is because the majority of products that technology companies bring to market are supported by software, including virtual reality platforms, Internet of Things (IoT) devices and smartphones. However, like data science talent, it can be difficult to compete with large employers unless employers pay attention to what job seekers want. While attractive salary packages can spark the interest of top talent, it seems that many developers want more than just a competitive salary. A recent questionnaire in the US, Canada and Latin America, it was found that the majority of software developers would choose an employer based on work flexibility and the availability of remote working arrangements. According to the survey, 86% of all technicians are completely remote, and more than a third would rather stay remote. The vast majority of respondents (80%) named hybrid as their preferred work model, reporting remote benefits such as reduced stress, greater autonomy and better work-life balance.

Not surprisingly, many companies, including industry giants like Apple, Microsoft and Twitter, are opting for remote and hybrid work arrangements. Small businesses and startups may also want to consider offering remote working options to make their organization attractive to top talent. At the same time, as software engineers increasingly prioritize autonomy, remote working doesn’t just mean changing the employee’s location and avoiding commuting. Companies need to break free from the “9-to-5” culture and give employees the freedom to plan and manage their work schedules and tasks.

web developers

Web developers are in high and constant demand. Giants like IBM, Google and Bank of America are always looking for technical talent, and many have dumped their degree requirements to fill vacancies and adapt to an increasingly tight labor market. Demand also comes from new and growing technology companies that want to be at the forefront of technology and innovation. Again, attracting talent can be difficult for startups that compete with larger, well-known companies with more resources.

For small businesses looking to get ahead, the key to staying competitive is having a clear idea of ​​what developer talent expects of them. It is clear that compensation matters and is the main reason to change jobs according to the 2020 Developer Satisfaction Report Status— but when looking for new jobs, web developers also prioritize career growth, better benefits, remote working and shorter hours. For companies, this means that the main selling point should be how their organization benefits employees at home and at work.

Last words

The digital transformation and our over-reliance on devices and technological capabilities have dramatically increased the demand for technical and digital professionals. The war for tech talent is raging and will only escalate in the coming years. Technology and software are already critical to business success, and it’s not just technology companies that want to win talent. Companies from all sectors have joined the fray, offering a wide range of benefits such as permanent remote working, sign-up bonuses and flexible hours.

With increasing pressure on the supply side of talent, offering competitive salary packages may not be enough to attract and retain technical talent. Retaining talent and especially sought-after professionals requires a focus on creating a work atmosphere that emphasizes flexible arrangements, a healthy work-life balance and individual initiative.

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