5 Top Tech Hiring Trends You Need to Keep an Eye on in 2022
Learn five top tech hiring trends to watch this year that we observe across major industries and what you can do to keep up with these.
2022 may well be called the year of candidate experience. As companies continue to struggle to get software engineering job candidates in the hiring funnel, they are optimizing their hiring processes to keep them there, improve onsite to offer ratios, and the likelihood of meeting hiring targets. Now, what can you do to stay on top of your game as the competitors are optimizing their strategy to engage with candidates?
Below are the top five tech hiring trends that we observe across high growth finance, gaming, and major tech enterprises across the United States and Europe.
1. Bringing the software engineering manager to the top of the funnel
2. Improving onsite to offer ratio by optimizing the candidate experience
3. Forming interviewing teams and tracking their performance
4. Connecting the technical assessment and technical interview based on competency
5. The quality of code is more important than coding languages
Let’s delve deeper into each of them and what you can do to ensure you keep up with these tech hiring trends and win the war for tech talent.
Bringing the Software Engineering Manager to the top of the funnelTechnical hiring teams need to keep as many software engineering candidates in the funnel as possible. To do that, many are bringing their hiring managers in early in the process. This may seem counterintuitive, given the high cost of these leaders’ time. However, companies are finding that the cost of losing a great candidate is greater than 30 to 60 minutes of a software engineering manager’s time. Why might this be? According to LinkedIn, there are 468,000 open software engineering jobs in the United States at the time of this writing. In a country that only graduates about 50,000 Computer Science students each year, there is a heavy burden on teams to attract experienced software engineers and ease the process for new graduates and interns.
The risk of failing to attract and hire software engineers is a sizable one. Product goals and in turn revenue goals may not be met and internal operations may not be automated and streamlined.
What can you do? Experiment with a willing hiring manager and move them to the first or second screening step. Track onsite to offer ratio and monitor for improvement, which leads us to…
Improving onsite to offer ratio by optimizing the candidate experienceStrong candidate experience used to be considered nice to have. And if it was considered at all, it was limited to the user experience of the technical assessment platform and its IDE (Interactive Development Environment). Today, Talent Acquisition and Software Engineering leaders are considering all of the steps in the hiring process to be part of the candidate experience. In fact, some Talent Acquisition leaders in finance and banking report that one week is the absolute maximum time that a candidate should be in the hiring process from recruiter screen to hire—any longer, and the onsite to offer ratio begins to decrease dramatically. As a result, finding inefficiencies and optimizing for efficiencies in the hiring funnel is a high priority.
What can you do? If you have not already, consider building a recruiting operations function that tracks the key steps in your hiring process. These include:
o Assessment invitation to sign up
o Sign up to completion
o Interview schedule to completion
o Onsite to offer
o Offer to hire
Forming interviewing teams and tracking their performanceHiring teams are dedicating software engineering team time to interviewing and tracking their performance using candidate feedback. Meanwhile, interviewing teams are being dedicated to specific interview types and competencies. For example, soft skills, coding skills, and technology knowledge. The teams are supported with appropriate interviewing platforms, that include whiteboards and preconfigured questions to ensure interview consistency.
Following the interview, candidates may be invited to fill out an NPS-style survey about the interviewer. Of course, the ease of the experience on the interviewer will have a great impact on their overall performance.
What can you do? Aside from surveying your candidates, consider what you can do to improve the experience for interviewers. Companies frequently take the following actions:
o Dedicate a maximum amount of time for interviews
o Equip teams with pre-configured questions that map to key competencies for the role
o Bring coding solutions from the assessment into the interview for discussion
o Train interviewers on how to use these platforms and interviewing techniques, such as giving guidance
Connecting the technical assessment and technical interview based on competencyIf your software engineering team conducting interviews is struggling to find questions to use with candidates or using the same ones they have been using for years, it may be time to connect the technical assessment and technical interview based on key competencies for the role. It all starts with a clear, realistic job description that accurately represents your hiring bar. Companies are designing full assessment and interviewing processes using pre-configured questions developed for specific competencies and skills. For example, USAA has brought these technical skills and behavioral competencies into its job descriptions. This can eliminate confusion about what to assess for and help select the appropriate technical assessments and technical interview questions from your question bank.
What can you do? Closely evaluate your job descriptions for accuracy relative to your hiring bar and do a working session with talent acquisition and engineering teams to select the right pre-configured question for technical assessments and interviews. If you are unsure if they reflect your hiring bar, try at least 50 assessments on existing team members and see how they perform. Bear in mind that this reflects your existing team, and may need to become more inclusive to hire a more diverse team.
The quality of code is more important than coding languages or absolute correctness
Historically, the quality of code has been nice to have or required, in addition to the use of a specific coding language and the absolute correctness of the solution. This is going by the wayside. Software engineering leaders are beginning to emphasize the quality of code and its logical correctness over the ability to produce an exact replica of a desired piece of code. Code quality is like user-friendliness for the tech stack and fellow developers on a team. Does the code do what it should? Does it follow a consistent style? Is it easy to understand? Can it be tested?
What can you do? Consider if your technical hiring team’s coding skills test can indicate code quality and how that contributes to the overall performance score. A scoring rubric that defines code quality at various levels will be important to interpreting these scores and ultimately deciding how to (or if) advance the candidate.
Tech hiring trends will continue to evolve beyond this year. But one thing is for sure, implementing the right process and having the right tool that can help you identify top candidates and offer a great candidate experience will help you stay competitive as you navigate through the changes in the industries and the world of work.