Our world is significantly different than what it was a few years ago. As a technology leader, you may feel this more than most people at your company. Your role has changed. You’re expected to serve both internal and external customers, meeting high service-level expectations while propelling the organization forward through technology investments. But, you can’t do it alone. It takes some seriously skilled people and buttoned-up processes to make the change you want and need to see.
The problem? The investments you want to make take highly specialized people to support them. Those individuals ready and available to take on this work are few and far between. They’re hard to source, and they’re expensive.
Not to mention, your teams may be suffering due to a mile high backlog that prevents them from doing the valuable work you need to modernize and the exciting work they’re passionate about. It’s killing your team culture. People might be accepting new offers elsewhere.
So how can you find a consistent and reliable supply of skilled talent that helps you prioritize innovation while building happier teams?
The short answer is that there probably isn’t a single source, but a combination that’s the sweet spot to solve your staffing problem.
Consideration 1: Work with a staff augmentation partner as a short-term solution.
Direct, permanent hiring is challenging.
It’s expensive. The average cost to hire may cost 3x to 4x their salary.
It takes up too much time to train and onboard.
What if that person decided to leave after a year for another opportunity? 20% of total turnover nationwide is attributed to technical roles.
Is it even worth it at that point?
Although direct hiring is safe, short-term technical help provides you with a resource ready to jump right into work while still giving you managerial control. This is different than an outsourcing agency, where you have very little control or communication with your hired resource. A staff augmentation resource should feel like an extension of your team.
When looking for a partner, make sure you’re asking the right questions to make sure they’re qualified and already familiar with your systems and technology.
Consideration 2: Work with a technical recruiter for hiring full-time or contract roles.
If you think working with a recruiter is a good option for hiring, make sure it’s a technical recruiter so they have a better understanding of what to look for in candidates.
Too many times a candidate looks great on paper, and maybe even in interviews, but once they’re on board, you realize they have little practical experience.
Technical recruiters should have more insight into technical resumes and skills and know how to spot red flags.
If you choose to work with a technical recruiter, set expectations early on what you’re looking for in a candidate, be transparent about pay, and stay in constant communication to make sure you’re able to hire as quickly as possible.
Long gone are the days of candidates waiting weeks for a response.
Consideration 3: Utilize Managed Services for long-term support.
Managed Services partners oversee and train their own team, but work separately to complete specific projects or tasks you assign to them.
This is a great option if you want to completely hand off pesky, time-consuming tasks in several areas that fill your backlog – like systems maintenance, upgrades, and configuration. Managed Services partners should also be able to provide consultation on process improvements and documentation.
You have to diversify. You just can’t put your hands in one basket. …you know in the Public Sector, there’s still a lot of organizations, including ourselves, that are developing applications on their own, and that means bringing in talented application developers, programmers, quality assurance folks…a whole team to develop a new product. I think mainstream products that are already out in the wild, if you will, leveraging those with the right partner who can help you highly configure and implement those in your environment, that improves your time to delivery and value.
– Richard McHattie, Chief Innovation and Technology Officer, Maricopa County