IT Employment

Tech talent poaching will get more aggressive this year

The latest report from Dice indicates that tech talent poaching will increase in 2011.

The news from Dice. com is that tech talent poaching will become a frenzy this year, according to hiring managers and recruiters. In a recent Dice study, more than half (54%) of hiring managers and recruiters anticipate that tech talent poaching will get more aggressive this year, while, just three percent of respondents expect a let-up.

More tech projects are getting the go-ahead and companies are looking for experienced IT pros to lead those projects.

Many of the hiring managers polled in the study say that their companies are taking steps to keep their employees from going to the competition, such as offering flexible work hours and increasing salaries.

These managers also weighed in on what would happen to employees who jump to a competitor and then decide it's not for them. Only 11 percent of hiring managers said they would not allow a former employee to return after being poached, while one-third indicated the opposite. Most hiring managers say it would depend on the individual employee.

I hate to be a cynic (but why change at this point?) but this seems a little too good to be true. What are your thoughts?


Toni Bowers is Managing Editor of TechRepublic and is the award-winning blogger of the Career Management blog. She has edited newsletters, books, and web sites pertaining to software, IT career, and IT management issues.

rhathewa 1 Like

Given that companies no longer value their employees and see them only as an asset that is usable only as long as they cannot be replaced by someone else at a cheaper cost, then this is a trend that will surely continue.

John_LI_IT_Guy 2 Like

If I were offered a better a deal (money, compensation, environment) to jump ship I'd jump. I have to think whats best for me. That's today's reality. Any CEO's out there reading this? They created this playing field I'm just playing the game they created. The ME GAME. I never used to be like that but I've learned my lesson. If companies want to treat IT pros like a hired gun then so be it. It's a two way street.


The global capital created the workforce by its own image. As far as I can say, it's quite comfortable with that.


I had studied for my CISA and passed and have been endorsed. Now I had just started a contact that goes a couple of months at a time. It is not a auditors postion but is money. When it ends they extend you again. I was on the job a week and another department saw my online resume and I told them I was already working there. They told me when the contract comes up for renewal send my resume to them first.


Are flexible hours really so rare in the US? In Canada, it is generally a given in hi-tech. Obviously there are certain tasks or industries where it is not feasible, but it's not much of a selling point when it's offered by most employers.


I work at a small/medium company as an It system analyst and I have pretty good flex hours. If I work late on a project/issue one day I can either come in late or leave early any time i choose ( as long as I ok it with the boss of course). So i think it all depends on each different company with the flex hours.

Pastor_George 1 Like

These companies have low balled the techies for a few years now and we have better memories than an MSdb. I do hope they enjoyed the time while we struggled now it is time that they paid the piper.

aeiyor 8 Like

Good Day All. If it does go that route I do see a trend developing. I liked what Scott.Newman had to say -- Poach Me. It's unfortunate that now-a-days the business environment doesn't value its priceless commodity of people. Rather the view is that people are a dime a dozen. Which goes to say that what people bring into the table isn't valued because we're all individuals. The dime a dozen mentality undervalues the talent, skills and worth of the employee. IF they truly believe people are replaceable then its very murky waters we tread as it has incredible ramifications. I believe that the tech talent poaching is a sign of a bigger issue. The issue being what I mentioned that people aren't treated properly. It's a combination of compensation, loyalty, trust and treatment. If you compensate someone well, are loyal to want them, provide trust in the developed relationship and treat them well.... they don't have a need or want to look elsewhere or consider something else. There are 4 elements that employers such look at very carefully.. Compensation/Pay - what value you assign the employees contribution and work. Environment - working environment plays parts to an employee's happiness. Benefits - aside from the compensation, what does the company offer to employee to make it worth their time. Interpersonal relations/Commitment - The communication and feeling that you're part of the organization If these are fostered, nurtured and addressed.... the employee has a much higher chance of staying versus going. If another company offered these things and the employee was not getting the satisfaction and satiation from their work at his/her current company -- the employee is likely to bail. BUT if they employee's are getting their needs met and compensated accordingly -- even of the other company offered larger $$ it doesn't translate to the familiar experience the employee currently has. The curious thing is what is down the road from the Tech Poaching - because if the premise is still that if the current company doesn't value the employee and the next company offers the carrot but has similar structures in it -- it isn't any better but the loss of talent impacts the business. Which in a downward spiral will begin impacting performance/product as well as re-inventing the wheel when talent leaves. One can only hope that improvement is not just the onset of new jobs but also the value placed on the people who do the job. Sincerely, Satori.

jmarkovic32 5 Like

Companies have been taking full advantage of this employers market and it's rubbing their talent the wrong way. There will be alot of people jumping ship. Salary freezes and furloughs only push the cost down the road since you will either have to pay more than a normal raise to keep talent or pay more for their replacement.

jkameleon 1 Like

... when you can pay less for their replacement?


Who says you can pay less for the replacement? Who says you can even find a suitable replacement at a higher salary? We not talking about day labor at the local plant nursery, are we?


- Yes you can find a replacement fresh out of school - the question is do you want to start from scratch and yes it comes down to money - Businesses dont care - CEO's dont care - owners dont care - they only care about money and the bottom line - But poaching I can definately see especially in these times - the owner/CEO will always go for low cost and cheaper I have very rarely seen it go the other way. Also in our industry you jump from job to job after a couple of years. Is what the industry is. I would love to find a job to call home but it takes time to find the right fit and hopefully that company stays around a long time. Would I let myself be poached most likely YES


I agree, I have two positions that I'm trying to fill now and cannot find the talent I'm looking for so, I have a recuiter looking within companies to pull someone.

BB914 1 Like

While this might occur in some industries and cities, overall I just don't see it in the US. The march offshore is only gaining momentum - the poaching will occur in Bangalore or Beijing, not here.

bruno_ann 1 Like

Depends on what branch of IT you're in. Information Security in many cases requires a security clearance, and that gives U.S. citizens the advantage.

ccadman 1 Like

As a 20 year veteran of IT, I can only hope that the days of Y2K will be upon us again. I hope this holds true and jobs will fall from the sky as they did before


This will gain momentum as the perceived economic turnaround takes hold, since the resources are current vs. the perceived condition of the displaced Professional..

TalentC 1 Like

With our aging work force and looming talent shortage, poaching will become the wave of the future.


... and, considering the economy, it's going to loom for the foreseeable future.

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