The Struggle is Real: The Tech Talent Shortage and Possible Solutions

Time to Read: 4.7 minutes

Updated: December 7, 2022

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in the IT sector is projected to grow about 13 percent between 2020 and 2030. That’s about 667,600 new jobs, faster than the average of all occupations.

The question here is whether we have the appropriate skill set and manpower to take over the jobs and the short answer is NO. The world is facing an unprecedented tech talent shortage of 85 million (roughly the population of Germany) and it’s getting more and more difficult for recruiters to hire tech talent.

In this article, we will discuss why companies are having a tech talent shortage and the possible solutions to the problem.

Why are Companies Having a Tech Talent Shortage?

In a post-covid world, we experienced an unprecedented wave of tech adoption across every industry. Businesses got accustomed to remote work and virtual meetings, and we crammed about a decade’s worth of tech adoption in a single year.

The pandemic forced businesses to radically switch from the old ways and start digital transformation programs. This transformation requires more qualified people with an IT and technology skillset. According to a CompTIA survey of HR leaders, 41% hired tech staff and 62% are likely to hire for technology roles in response to the pandemic.

The ever-changing technologies in the market also lead to a shortage of skilled candidates. On top of that, we are facing the “Great Retirement” as baby boomers are leaving the workforce. A study by the Pew Research Center shows that about 28.6 million baby boomers retired in the third quarter of 2020. Now, companies are finding it harder and harder to fill those vacant positions.

Pew Research: Annual Increase in Retired Baby Boomers Tech Talent Shortage

Tech Talent Shortage and its Solutions

Commit to Diversity and Inclusion

Did you know that tech is among the least diverse industries? The tech industry is largely dominated by white males, and minorities and women in tech are significantly underrepresented.

A research report by Mthree and Wiley shows that 68% of business leaders feel that there is a lack of diversity within the tech workforce. Additionally, 68% of 18-28 year olds have felt uncomfortable in a job because of their ethnicity, gender, socio-economic background, and their neurodevelopmental conditions.

Mthree & Wiley Research Report: Tech Talent Shortage & Lack of Diversity

To promote diversity and inclusion in your company, start from the top and build strategies to promote a diverse culture. On the other hand, the best tech recruiters make hiring decisions based solely on talent without any bias. Over time, connect with employees, take feedback, and conduct audits to find out the gaps in company culture and make appropriate adjustments.

Explore and Hire Global Talent

When it comes to hiring new software engineers, employers are looking for experts or senior software engineers. However, data sciences, AI, and machine learning are still developing, and finding expert resources within the US software developers community can be very difficult. This can be especially difficult if you’re trying to put together a high-quality team in major markets such as Boston, NY, DC, and around the US’s West Coast.

To deal with this problem, employers need to expand their search radius to include people from everywhere in the world. In the world of remote jobs and virtual meetings, hiring global talent and managing a remote team is easier. Outsourcing work has gained a bad reputation for simply hiring people from countries with low wages. However, with some effort, you can explore and put together a highly-efficient global team.

Offer Career Advancement Opportunities

According to a survey of over 10,000 people, the top reason for switching jobs is career advancement. The best way for companies to retain talent is more than just paying well. It’s to ensure that they are getting challenged enough and map a clear path for career growth.No one can deny the importance of money and benefits, but you also shouldn’t underestimate the power of career growth.

LinkedIn Research Report: Top Reason People Left Jobs

Allison Lewis, the Head of Consumer Market Research at LinkedIn explores the issue in his article saying:

“After all, one of the biggest things recruiters want to know is what to talk about and what to put on their career pages and job descriptions that are going to entice a passive candidate to leave their current company. The answer is clear: sell the future. Sell not just the offered job itself, but where the job can take the person.”

Upskilling and Reskilling Internal Talent

When it comes to recruitment, companies usually start from the outside. They get the best tech recruiters to find and hire tech talent. However, upskilling and reskilling your internal talent can make this talent hunt a lot easier. In a world where tech talent is getting harder and harder to find, companies should identify skill gaps in their employees and offer a training program to develop those skills.

Additionally, everyone wants to grow in their career, and learn new technologies. Especially Millennials and Gen Z workers appreciate this kind of investment. Employers need to understand that the tech industry is always evolving. If they don’t encourage their employees to grow alongside, then it can lead to a huge skill gap.

Getting Ready to Win the Tech Talent War

As the world moves towards a more tech-savvy future, the need for tech talent will keep increasing. Robots taking over our jobs is no longer the main issue, it’s the shortage of human tech workforce. Taking the first step is always difficult, but with a more diverse company culture, career growth programs, a solid recruitment strategy, and the best tech recruiters, your company can find and hire tech talent.

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Noor-ul-Anam Ruqayya

Noor-ul-Anam Ruqayya is a software engineer that also has a passion for writing well-researched, SEO-optimized, and engaging content for a wide range of industries. She has been writing long-form content for the talent acquisition industry since 2020 and has created multiple top-ranking articles.

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