Taking a look at the tech world 2023 statistics can be a valuable source of insights for the industry. 

Nearly three-quarters of recruiters find themselves grappling with the elusive quest for relevant candidates. As if the race for talent weren’t tight enough, the clock ticks relentlessly, with prime candidates often slipping away within a mere ten days.

The numbers speak volumes. High-quality hires start seeming like an impossible task, but that’s exactly where alternative recruiting techniques come into play. 

In this article, we’ll uncover eight proven tech recruiting ways of atttacting tech talent that might not be on your radar yet, but are essential to stay competitive given the above statistics. 

Reasons to Look For Alternative Recruiting Techniques in Tech

Looking for alternative recruiting techniques in tech makes sense as the industry is constantly evolving, and traditional methods may not always catch the best candidates. Let’s look at what is currently happening on the market: 

Talent Shortage

The tech talent shortage is one of the most compelling reasons to seek alternative recruiting methods:

  • Traditional recruiting methods often result in intense competition for a limited pool of skilled professionals.
  • Traditional recruiting might overlook candidates with non-traditional backgrounds who possess valuable skills.

Changing Candidate Preferences

Candidates’ expectations and preferences have evolved, requiring recruiters to adapt:

  • Many tech-savvy candidates expect a digital-first recruitment process, including AI-driven assessments and video interviews.
  • As candidates seek better work-life balance, companies need to showcase their commitment to employee well-being.
  • Candidates increasingly prioritize companies with a strong sense of purpose. 

Rapid Technological Advancement

The fast-paced nature of technology demands innovative recruiting strategies:

  • Traditional interviews might not adequately evaluate candidates’ technical skills. 
  • Leveraging AI and machine learning can help identify top talent by analyzing vast amounts of data, providing insights into candidates’ skills and cultural fit.
  • Alternative methods focus on identifying specific skills rather than relying solely on degrees or certifications. This is especially important in fields like AI and cybersecurity.

Remote Work and Decentralized Teams

The rise of remote work and globally distributed teams necessitates a shift in recruiting practices:

  • Remote work allows companies to tap into a worldwide talent pool. Recruiters need strategies to connect with and assess candidates from different time zones and cultures.
  • Alternative methods can include virtual reality onboarding experiences to help remote employees feel more connected to the company from day one.
  • Remote interviews require different techniques, such as assessing a candidate’s ability to work independently and communicate effectively online.

Proven Tech Recruiting Techniques

Once you understand the reasons, it leaves only one question hanging — which techniques to use? We’ll go over ones that have a potential to change your recruiting and make it more personalized and effective.. 

Technique 1: Open Source Communities

Source: GitHub

Active contributors to open-source projects are often a goldmine of technical skills and passion for technology, which makes it a valuable source for recruiters.

Why Engage? 

  • Active contributors to open-source projects are usually highly skilled. They work on real-world projects, gaining practical experience that’s hard to replicate in a classroom.
  • These specialists often have a genuine love for technology. They’re not just punching a clock; they’re motivated by their enthusiasm for the field.
  • Open source is all about learning and collaboration. Imagine how they work on their skills through collaboration and code reviews.

How to Engage? 

Engaging in open source contributions can be a smart strategy for companies looking to hire tech specialists and recruiters. Here’s how businesses can tap into the open source community to find potential candidates:

Identify the Right Projects

Look for open source projects that align with your company’s technology stack, industry, or specific skill requirements. This ensures that potential candidates have relevant expertise.

Active Participation

Encourage your current tech team to actively participate in open source projects. It’s a win-win step for both specialists who get to work on their skills and the company, as you get to improve its profile within the open source community.

Leverage Open Source Platforms

Platforms such  as GitHub and GitLab host numerous open source projects. Use their search and filtering features to find projects and contributors in your field of interest. Also, make sure to check contributors’ GitHub profiles. They often provide valuable information about their skills, interests, and contributions. Look for developers with a consistent history of involvement in relevant projects.

Offer Sponsorship or Bounties

Consider offering financial sponsorship to specific open source projects or creating bounties for solving problems related to your technology stack. This can attract contributors who are interested in your company’s support.

Company-Sponsored Projects

Initiate or sponsor your own open source projects. This can attract contributors who are interested in your company’s mission and technology.

Technique 2: Tech Forums and Q&A Websites

Participate in tech-focused forums and Q&A websites like Stack Overflow, where developers showcase their expertise and help others with their technical queries.

Why Engage?

  • These platforms attract tech enthusiasts who are actively engaged in discussions and problem-solving. By participating, companies can identify and connect with individuals who are passionate about technology.
  • Tech-focused forums and Q&A websites often have discussions on specific technologies, frameworks, and tools. Companies can find candidates with expertise in precisely the areas they need.
  • These platforms have a global user base, allowing companies to connect with talent from around the world. This can be particularly advantageous for remote or globally distributed teams.

How to Engage? 

Let’s break down how companies and recruiters can effectively engage with tech-focused forums and Q&A websites like Stack Overflow to find tech specialists:

Create a Company Profile

Just like individuals, companies can have profiles on these platforms. It’s a great way to showcase your company’s tech-related projects, values, and job openings.

 Search for Candidates

Use the search features to find profiles of potential candidates. You can filter by skills, experience, and location to narrow down your search.

Follow Tags and Topics

Follow relevant tags and topics related to your industry or technology stack. This way, you’ll get notifications when new questions or discussions arise in your area of interest.

Job Listings

Many tech forums and Q&A websites have sections dedicated to job listings. Post your job openings there to attract tech specialists who are already engaged with the platform.

Offer Technical Challenges

Some platforms allow you to post technical challenges or coding tests. This can help you identify candidates with the skills you need.

Technique 3: Alternative Career Paths

Consider individuals who may have taken unconventional career paths, such as coding bootcamp graduates or self-taught developers, as they can bring unique perspectives and skills. 

Why Engage?

Considering individuals who have taken unconventional career paths, such as coding bootcamp graduates or self-taught developers, can be a smart move for several reasons:

  • Bootcamp grads and self-taught devs tend to be quick learners. In the tech world, where things change faster than you can say ‘JavaScript,’ adaptability is a golden trait.
  • These specialists come from all walks of life, which can add some interesting flavors to your team’s dynamic. They might have prior experience in totally unrelated fields, which can be a boon in cross-disciplinary projects.
  • These unconventional techies often bring a diverse set of skills and unique perspectives to the table. It’s like adding a splash of color to a monochrome canvas.

How to Engage?

Check out their portfolios and project work – it’s where they shine

When you’re considering candidates from non-traditional backgrounds, their portfolios and project work become pivotal. This is where they get to flex their practical skills and show their creativity in action. Dive into their GitHub, personal websites, or any online projects they’ve proudly shared. You can get a feel for their coding style, how they tackle problems, and whether they pay attention to the nitty-gritty details.

Don’t forget to assess soft skills like teamwork and adaptability

You should definitely check if a candidate can work well with others, express their ideas clearly, and roll with the punches when things change. Especially in tech, these skills are gold. Ask them about their experiences working with others or how they handle feedback – that’s where you’ll see these soft skills in action.

Keep the Learning Going

Recognize that those who’ve taken unconventional paths may have gaps in their knowledge or skills. Think about setting up a mentorship program, giving them access to online courses, or helping them attend tech conferences. It’s not just about their growth; it shows you’re really invested in their success.

Technique 1: Open Source Communities

Source: Codemotion

Identify potential candidates among the presenters at tech meetups and conferences, as they may be passionate and knowledgeable about their areas of expertise. 

Why Engage

Here are key points about why this technique is effective:

  • At tech meetups and conferences, you’ll often find presenters who are not only experts but also incredibly passionate about their fields. Their enthusiasm and depth of knowledge can be a goldmine for potential job candidates.
  • These events provide a unique opportunity to witness professionals in action, showcasing their skills and expertise in real-time. It’s like seeing a live performance of what they can bring to the table.
  • This approach maintains a professional distance, as you’re simply observing and identifying potential talent in a setting where individuals willingly share their expertise. It’s a respectful way to find great candidates without invading their privacy.

How to Engage

Tech companies looking to snag top-notch tech specialists can definitely leverage tech meetups to reel in talent. Here’s the scoop on how to do it:

Be a Presence, Not a Sales Pitch

When you attend these meetups, don’t go in guns blazing with a job offer. Instead, be a friendly face. Engage in conversations, ask questions about the tech topics, and genuinely show interest. It’s about building relationships, not selling jobs.

Host Your Own Sessions

Want to stand out? Host your own tech sessions or workshops at these meetups. This puts your company in the spotlight as a knowledge hub. Talented individuals who are eager to learn will be drawn to your expertise.

Showcase Company Culture

Sneak in some info about your company culture during conversations. Let them see the awesome workplace you’ve got. Tech specialists often look for a good cultural fit as much as a good tech fit.

Collect Contact Info

Don’t forget to gather contact info. Have a sign-up sheet or a way to connect on LinkedIn. This keeps the conversation going and opens the door for potential future hires.

Follow Up Later

After the meetup, send a follow-up message. Express your interest in continuing the conversation. It’s a subtle way to let them know you’re keen on having them on your team. A good examples would look like this:

Hey [Name], it was fantastic chatting with you about [topic] at the meetup. I’ve come across a few resources related to that which I thought you might find interesting. Would you like me to share them with you?

Technique 5:  Virtual Reality Job Fairs

Source: Metaverse

Staying ahead in the race for top tech talent means being open to some pretty cool innovations. One such idea is hosting a job fair in virtual reality (VR), and trust me, it’s not just futuristic; it can also be super beneficial for tech companies.

Why Engage?

  • Hosting a VR job fair shouts loud and clear that your company isn’t just keeping up with tech trends – it’s setting them. It’s like a neon sign saying, “We’re all about the tech,” which can attract candidates who love innovation.
  • With a VR job fair, you’re not confined by location. You can attract tech talent from all over the world, which is awesome if you’re looking for specialized skills that might not be common in your neck of the woods.
  • Traditional job fairs are okay, but VR job fairs take things up a notch. Candidates can wander through virtual booths, chat with your team, and even join workshops, all from their couch. It’s like being at a real fair, but without the queues.

How to Engage

Partner Up

Team up with VR platform providers or event experts who know their way around virtual job fairs. They’ll help you create the virtual space and make sure it’s a smooth ride for everyone.

Fancy Booths

Your virtual booths should look snazzy. Load them up with videos, 3D stuff, and live chats with your team. Make candidates feel like they’re in the heart of your company.

Networking Galore

Virtual coffee breaks or meet-and-greet sessions can mimic the mingling part of in-person events. It’s where connections happen.

Follow-Up and Feedback

 After the VR job fair, don’t leave candidates hanging. Reach out quickly. And don’t forget to get feedback from candidates and your team to make the next one even better.

Technique 6: LinkedIn Deep Dive

Get creative with LinkedIn searches. Look for professionals who have skills you need but might not have “typical” tech job titles. For instance, a music producer might have coding skills too.

Why Engage?

  • Tech talent isn’t confined to the usual suspects. You’ll find digital specialists hiding in all kinds of roles – marketing, design, music, you name it. These individuals often bring a fresh perspective to tech challenges.
  • Someone who’s skilled in a non-tech field but has coding prowess is like a two-for-one deal. They not only understand the nuances of their own domain but can also apply tech solutions creatively.
  • These unconventional techies often approach problems differently. They might come up with innovative solutions that a traditional techie might not have thought of. It’s like getting a whole new toolbox.

How  To Engage? 

Craft Savvy Search Queries

On LinkedIn, craft specific search queries. Use keywords related to the skills you need, such as programming languages, software, or tools. Pair these with the industry or interests you’re targeting.

Skill-Scouting Profile Analysis

When you find profiles that catch your eye, dive into their profiles. Look beyond the job title. Check out their skills, endorsements, and projects. 

Engage Thoughtfully

Once you’ve identified potential tech talents, reach out. But don’t just dive in with a job offer. Start a conversation. Ask about their experiences, their coding projects, and how they think their skills could complement your tech team.

Technique 6: Tech Retreat

This is probably not something you were expected to see at the list of recruiting techniques, but take a moment to think about it. The user persona of your potential candidate probably has personal development as one of the key values. Using tech retreats — weekend getaways or camps for techies — can be a fresh alternative for conferences that many specialists in tech are tired of. 

Why Engage?

  • Techies are often hungry for knowledge. A tech retreat provides an opportunity to learn, but in a laid-back setting. It’s like taking a break from the usual grind while expanding your skills.
  • You can organize workshops and hands-on sessions on popular technologies. Participants get to tinker, experiment, and immerse themselves in tech topics they’re passionate about.
  • You have a group of tech enthusiasts in one place, eager to explore opportunities. It’s a great way to identify potential hires who are not just skilled but also align with your company culture.

How to Engage?

Choose an Engaging Location

Pick a venue that’s not just any old conference room. Think nature retreats, cozy cabins, or even a tech-focused co-living space. The surroundings should inspire creativity.

Diverse Workshop Lineup

Offer a range of workshops covering various tech topics. You might have sessions on AI, blockchain, web development, or whatever floats your tech boat.

Unstructured Time

Don’t pack the schedule too tightly. Allow for unstructured time where participants can work on personal projects, relax, or engage in spontaneous discussions.

Social Activities

Include fun social activities, like bonfires, game nights, or outdoor adventures. These activities foster connections and build a sense of community.

Effective hiring solution

These unconventional approaches, from VR job fairs to tech retreats, offer a refreshing perspective on finding and securing the best tech talent.

While these eight tech recruiting techniques are effective, some companies simply don’t have the necessary resources, time, or expertise to implement them.

That’s when leveraging the expertise of others becomes the best course of action.

With an established network, access to specialized tools, and a deep understanding of the tech talent market, recruiting agencies like ours know how to tailor a solution specifically for you. We always advise our clients to decide their recruitment strategy based on their goals and capacity. In some cases, it makes much more sense to free up internal resources and seek external recruiting help.

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