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Outplay the IT & Digital talent crunch with flexible hiring solutions

Posted 18 days ago by JAC Recruitment Singapore

Hiring Perspectives In It Digital

The talent shortage isn’t going anywhere anytime soon

The competition for hiring in the IT and Digital sector in Singapore is at full throttle, making it an employee market for candidates and a hunt for retention for employers.

The drive towards digital transformation across almost all business sectors, accelerated by Covid, has resulted in a massive shortage of local talent with IT and Digital skills at all levels. Closed borders and tighter employment criteria for foreign workers also mean that the talent pool is even smaller with a limited inflow of IT and Digital skills professionals. There is no expectation of a reprieve any time soon. The demand for such talent is here to stay as Singapore moves steadily towards becoming a digital economy.

There is consistent demand in IT functions covering IT Infrastructure, Applications software, Data-related jobs, Product-related jobs, Digital and ERP solutions. With more start-ups setting up shop in Singapore, we are seeing growing demand in fintech,insurtech, and the electric vehicle (EV) space, with numerous companies setting up R&D functions here.

Added challenges caused by increment inflation and pandemic

The market is undoubtedly spending to secure good talent. Hiring companies are offering increment hikes of up to 30% to candidates; start-ups are luring candidates with ever-higher equity compensation and pay packages, as well as guaranteed sign-on bonuses dispensed in an agreed period. To top it off, counteroffers are now outbidding the promised increments by a further 5~10%, adding to the crunch.

Interestingly, this increment inflation is not always winning out in the war for this talent as Covid has shifted some long-held values and priorities. Job stability and work-life balance seem to come up top-of-mind among candidates. For example, in the case of first-round start-ups known for generally having less fine-tuned processes, an everybody-pitch-in ethos and long hours. The unicorn has lost its original sheen in the aftermath of the pandemic.

There is also no longer the safety net of returning to a previous job which might no longer exist due to the effects of Covid on the economy. This might not be the case with established companies, but they face their own challenges.

So, what is the solution to the talent crunch?

In such an immovable situation where demand for IT and Digital talent is so much higher than its availability, there are hiring solutions to navigate beyond the constraints. A 100% match for any role is probably beyond reach, so what are the options?

  1. Hire and train –
    In this climate, it is almost impossible to find a 100% match for any role. If a local candidate, keen to transfer their skills and is a 50~60% match to the position, the flexibility to accept this partial match and train them upon hiring is one of the most realistic solutions.

  2. Train and try –
    Alternately hiring a semi-skilled worker as a contractor to see how they progress in the role can be an excellent way to train a candidate with flexibility. A six-month contract period can be a reasonable amount of time to see if the arrangement works for both parties. If it does, then the contractor can be transitioned into the permanent role.

  3. Reskilled candidates –
    Hiring reskilled candidates is also one of the most viable solutions. Seasoned professionals who have been inclined to reskill generally prove to be a cut-above in productivity. This solution opens up the pool of options with job-seekers with experience and a hardy work ethic. A candidate that ticks the box on cultural fit can be developed into the perfect match with some time taken for training and acclimating on both sides.

All these pragmatic solutions can get you out of the tech talent crunch; they can also boost your employer brand and diversity, making the best use of local government initiatives and creating a promising long-term future for your workforce.

If you are looking for IT & Digital talent for your digital transformation, feel free to reach out to discuss which of these solutions, permanent or contracting recruitment, might be the one for you.

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