How do you know you're choosing the right IT candidates for your organization? When it comes to IT recruitment validating your candidates fully before hiring them is key. Learn more about the importance of developing strong tech recruiting processes below and learn six insider tips from HR experts to ensure you're hiring the right IT pros.

why validate the IT pros you hire

Verifying your candidates takes time and effort, so why bother with this process—especially if it can add a couple of days to the time it takes to fill a critical spot? Validating candidates does take work—work that begins before you even make the job posting or start sourcing candidates. But the benefits of doing this can include:

hire the right talent from the start.

The top IT recruitment challenge is finding the right person for a position with very niche or specific requirements. Technical jobs often require specific skill sets that are non-negotiable. You don't just need an experienced coder, for example; you need a coder experienced in a certain programming language like Java or Python. Taking time to validate candidates properly ensures you end up with an employee who has the skills to match your needs. 

reduce turnover.

Hiring someone that doesn't have the skills for the position or fit with your team culture drives up turnover. Either you have to let them go or they quit because they're not happy—either way, you end up spending more money on hiring in IT and have to start over with training and onboarding.

build a great team synergy.

Ensuring you hire the right IT pros supports team synergy. First, because all your employees fit well into the company culture, driving better teamwork and productivity. Second, because you appropriately fill a functional need with someone who can help others get work done via technical solutions.

create engaged, long-term partnerships.

The right employees are more likely to remain with you long-term. Net employee value to your organization is difficult to calculate, but it definitely goes up over time when you have engaged, loyal team members.

woman looking to the right
woman looking to the right

6 signs you're hiring the right IT professionals

If you can check yes to each of these six statements, you're on the right track for hiring IT pros! 

1. you created a detailed job description 

No, you don't need to list every possible task or requirement. There's a good chance your IT pro may need to type or use basic systems such as spreadsheets, but these don't need to be included on a job description. You do need to make it easy for candidates to self-select appropriately. 

Someone in the IT field should be able to look at your job description and understand right away whether they're a potential candidate for your position. Make sure you include technical requirements, such as certifications or uncommon skill sets someone simply can't do the job without. 

You should also include some information about company culture, so the candidate knows whether you're someone they're interested in working for.

2. you vet their technical skills

It's not enough for the candidate to believe they have the skills for the job and to tell you as much. Do the work to verify those skills. Here are a few tips for verifying IT skills:

  • ask for proof of credentials. Someone with an Adobe or Microsoft certification typically had to demonstrate experience and knowledge by passing exams. 
  • discuss past experiences. Ask the candidate to talk specifically about using certain skills or knowledge in past positions. If possible, have someone in on the interview who knows about these things and can tell if the applicant is speaking from real experience or might be making up an answer based on research.
  • ask candidates to take a test. Ask the candidate to complete a short skill-based test or a contract-based coding assignment so you can verify they have the right skills. This way, you give them a trial run before hiring them. An HR partner, like Randstad, can help you administer a test to verify a wide variety of coding and IT skills.

3. you focus on potential rather than past job experience

Just because someone hasn't done a specific IT job in the past, doesn't mean they're not capable or don't have the knowledge. Use conversational interviewing tactics to learn more about an applicant's overall potential—from education to passion for the job to ability to learn new things quickly. Combine that with past job experience to get a full picture of IT pros you might hire.

4. you focus on how they fit with your team 

Don't overlook team dynamics and company culture. An IT professional with all the right skills can still be the wrong hire if they're looking for a remote position and you want someone in the office—or if they're more of an independent worker and you need someone to be an integral part of an agile development team. Ask questions during the interview that are designed to understand cultural fit. 

5. you interview a few candidates before making a decision

No matter how perfect a candidate seems, don't make an offer until you interview more people. Subsequent interviews might alter your perception or remind you of something important. And even if a candidate seems ideal, you never know when someone who's an even better fit might show up.

Interview at least a few candidates from your short list before hiring anyone. This also ensures you have some backup choices in case a candidate turns down your offer or you end up needing to hire more than one person.

6. you have a great employer brand that draws in IT workers

You could be doing all of the steps above and still not end up with the best IT pros for you because they aren't applying. Take time to build a strong employer brand so IT pros want to work for you and seek out your job postings. 

work with a recruitment partner to develop your recruitment strategy

A professional IT recruiter can help you create strong job descriptions, source high-quality candidates and vet technical skills. Find out more about working with a recruitment partner and check out Randstad's guide to hiring the best fit for your company.