By harnessing the IT talent that's available around the world, you can build a high-performing global workforce that meets your organization's needs. These tips will help you develop and grow a flexible, effective IT group.
Successful managers agree: The strength of an organization's IT talent pool is a critical component to building and growing a successful company. And today's global environment makes it possible for an organization to build its workforce without restrictive geographical boundaries. An organization can pull talent and resources from around the world to build the strongest and most efficient team possible.
As a result, it is important for organizations to develop a systematic approach for recruiting and maintaining talent on a global level. In addition, organizations must implement strategies to optimize and harness the global IT service talent that best meets their IT service business requirements.
The following five tips will help CIOs and executives recruit global IT talent more effectively to ensure their organization's workforce is built for success.
1: Set objectives but allow for flexibility in roles
Setting goals and objectives is necessary when determining roles and responsibilities in an organization; however, it is also important to maintain flexibility to make room for individuals' unique skills and experiences. Maintaining a capable IT workforce is most effective when role requirements are clearly defined while still being flexible enough to incorporate the broad range and the scope of skills and talents available. For example, executives may consider redesigning service technicians' roles so an employee's unique skill set can shine through. By remaining flexible, it is easier to ensure organizational culture will support a diverse group of employees who thrive by playing up their strengths and following their instincts.
2: Recruit and promote from within
Companies should work to identify internal resources to develop and grow their workforce. Many managers have found that their company's most valuable resources lie inside the organization. Given the right training and support, internal candidates are put in a position to perform a broader variety of tasks, a particularly vital capability within the IT service industry where technologies and processes are constantly evolving.
3: Hire for innate talents and be willing to invest in training
Most executives trying to build a successful organization understand that it's important to find a balance between innate abilities and specific experience or qualifications when looking for IT talent. Often, hiring managers find a candidate who may have the right personality, experience, and problem-solving skills but may lack a particular certification or technical skill set.
When it comes to pooling talent and building an IT workforce, decision makers need to understand that even though certain skills can be taught, the innate abilities and attitude of a prospective hire can't be instilled with training. When a candidate with the right personality becomes available — even if he or she lacks a certain skill set — it helps to define the skills required for the position and determine whether certification gaps can be successfully achieved through training.
4: Build a candidate pipeline
To maintain the most efficient and well-balanced IT workforce, it's essential to be consistently on the lookout for talent. This is even more important as talent pools continue to globalize, resulting in larger and more diverse candidate pools. Having a candidate pipeline will reduce the likelihood an organization will be caught off guard or unprepared when a position opens up. Managers should ensure that they are never making hasty decisions or missing opportunities for talent. Examine your organization's business plan and try to anticipate future needs, including geographical expansions or relocations. Network and nurture relationships in an effort to recruit talent that aligns with your organization's future needs and direction.
The most diverse organizations tend to be those that are flexible and strategic about recruiting and maintaining IT talent. Executives at these organizations understand the value of diversity in experience, perspective, and skill when building a workforce. This is even more important when building a global IT workforce, as there is a greater opportunity to connect with individuals with a wide variety of skill sets. By leveraging the existing talent pool, nurturing global networks, and investing in diversity, organizations can effectively mine new IT service talent sources, build multicultural talent, and be well positioned for market success.
In today's global environment, decision makers must consider business goals and the direction of the organization when mining talent and managing an IT workforce. By prioritizing company needs, being open to diversity and unique skill sets, and valuing the talent that already exists internally, executives are more apt to employ a workforce aligned with company values — one that plays a strategic role in a company's ability to develop new services and expand into new markets. By focusing on having the right resources to identify new sources of talent, optimizing the IT talent pool, and building a strong talent pipeline, organizations can gain access to skills that support business goals, build bench strength, and recruit effectively to enhance competitive advantage.
Jay Patel is Director of Professional Services for Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA), Worldwide TechServices.