Is Hiring IT Staff an Uphill Battle? You’re Not Alone
If you are finding that hiring IT staff feels impossible, you are not alone. According to a recent Wall Street Journal article, there are a lot of IT job openings right now but not a lot of qualified applicants to fill them, especially when it comes to cloud services experience. We’ve seen a similar trend for cyber security professionals, but even more general IT positions are hard to fill.
There are a few reasons for this dip in qualified applicants:
- The number of postings/positions has increased. Thanks to the shift from in-office to work-from-anywhere, more companies are finding they need cloud and security experts to help them navigate and manage these changes.
- There simply are not enough applicants in the workforce with the necessary training, experience and credentials to fill the need.
- Retirement is on the rise. Baby boomers are in that retirement zone and are choosing to take early retirement rather than plodding on. Gen X’ers are not far behind.
- Many older workers (over 55) who have the experience and skills to fill these technical jobs have had “epiphanies” these last couple of years. “Life is too short” to continue in jobs they’re really not happy with. Instead, they jump into a completely different industry, one which they think will be less stressful or in which they can manage their own time. Many of them started their own business.
- As Baby Boomers and Generation X begin to recede from the labor force, Millennials and Gen Z — ranging from 18 to 41 years old and with much less experience and training — are becoming the majority of eligible candidates.
- Keeping quality IT personnel on staff is even more challenging, as they are often lured away by higher paying jobs, better benefits or more perks elsewhere. After all, it’s hard for small and medium-sized businesses to compete for talent against companies like Amazon, Microsoft and Google, all of which are actively recruiting and hiring tech staff.
Even if you don’t have to compete with the big 3 in your market, you’ll still find that other companies are competing with you for talent and offering those applicants incentives that you simply cannot afford or do not want to offer.
Solving the Challenges of Hiring IT Staff
There are a few ways to resolve these hiring challenges:
- Assess the current talent on your staff. Offer them opportunities to expand their education and skills. Recognize their work and let them know their voices are being heard. Keep up with the current salary trends. If others are raising their wages, you will have to do the same.
- When hiring IT staff, consider “new-collar workers'' — individuals who develop the technical and soft skills needed to work in technology jobs through nontraditional education paths: vocational schools, software boot camps, technical certification programs, high school technical education and on-the-job apprenticeships and internships.
- Using a managed service provider (MSP) can help solve your staffing problems either by becoming part of your IT team or by supporting your team with additional skills.
If you are looking to completely outsource IT needs, you can look for an MSP that will handle everything from security to software, monitoring the smallest details with setup and management. You won’t have to think about your IT, except maybe random thoughts about how smoothly it is working.
If on the other hand you have an internal IT department that is good but overwhelmed trying to keep up with the latest situations, you’ll want to seek a company that can help your existing team. It does not have to be all or nothing. An MSP can handle just those areas that the internal team cannot.
Many of the best MSPs will show you a platform that is tailored to your needs and will free you from the IT problems that are preventing you from taking care of your business.
Download our Managed IT Checklist to help you choose IT support for your business.
Then contact us for a free no-obligation consultation.
Even if you decide not to use us or another MSP, you’ll come away from the consultation with several good ideas for your business.