How to get applicants queuing for your next IT vacancy

How to get applicants queuing for your next IT vacancy 11th July 2017

We surveyed IT candidates, both permanent and contract, to get their views of the recruitment process. This is a brief extract on from our report and reveals what attracts them to a company – and how the opinion of candidates and recruiters differ.

It may not come as a surprise that pay (salary and day rates) is the main attraction for IT candidates. What may be surprising is that interesting work is in second place (see Chart below). Both contract (26%) and permanent IT staff (22%) agree it’s a magnet.

What attracts IT candidates

It’s wise not to underestimate the power of interesting work when attracting IT talent. Recruitment advertisements that highlight ground-breaking technology, unique projects or an award-winning team are more likely to get a response.

Note how the company brand has relatively little influence on their decision. Recruiters working for smaller firms will be pleased to see that interesting work is more important than a famous name.

Some in-house recruiters may raise an eyebrow when they see that the travelling distance to work features so prominently on an IT candidate wish list; 16% of IT job seekers ranked it as important, compared to just 8% of recruiters.

If in-house recruiters are struggling to get the right candidates, they might do well to include working from home as a way of expanding the potential audience and attracting more applicants.

Interestingly, outside of the IT department, the figures are much the same – salary, interesting work and distance from home are the top three attractions.

The most noticeable difference of opinion between candidates and recruiters is on the subjects of benefits and promotion.

Recruiters ranked perks and benefits in fourth place, yet candidates placed it second from last. Perhaps it’s not something that should be given prominence in IT recruitment unless it gives companies an advantage over their competitors.

The prospect of promotion also seems to have little appeal to IT candidates (2%) yet it is something in-house recruiters (8%) believe will attract job seekers.

Outside of the IT department, the story is a little different, with benefits and promotion scoring 8% and 4% respectively – slightly higher than their IT colleagues. This underlines that IT staff are different from other employees and there is not a one-size-fits-all solution.

Learning from the marketing department, recruiters should develop a ‘test and learn’ programme, where different advertisements are tested to see which generates the best response – not just the greatest number of candidates but also the best quality.

For further results from our survey of over 1,100 IT candidates, download our report titled ‘IT Talent Acquisition; the candidate’s view 2017’. There is also a sister publication ‘IT Talent Acquisition; the recruiter’s view 2017’.

Graham Smith

Author: Graham Smith

An award-winning, Marketing Director with over 25 years’ experience in direct marketing (including digital marketing, social media, marketing automation and direct mail)… the full B2B marketing mix.
A qualified member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) and Institute of Direct & Digital Marketing (IDM), Graham is also part of the ‘GDPR Working Party’ at the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) and was a Council member at the DMA for 3 years.

The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the view and opinion of Curo Talent.


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