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IT Candidates and “The Job Crush”

I recently worked with an IT candidate who was entertaining multiple job offers over a month of interviewing. I asked him how he ranked the opportunities, and he gave me an interesting answer.

“My top choice has changed many times over the last month,” he said. “The opportunities all seem strong, but it’s usually the last job I interview for that I have the biggest job crush on.”

That made sense. It’s often difficult to determine which job is better than another on paper. It’s far easier to determine which company is giving you the most love. Some companies drag the interview process along, while others jump to make offers quickly. It’s usually the companies that make offers quickly that win the battle for IT talent here in the Twin Cities.

Here are some tips for companies and candidates to follow, in order to successfully maneuver the “Job Crush.”

For Companies:

1. Speed is key. Companies need to create a “two-minute drill,” like a football team, to speed up their hiring process. It may be fine to have a phone screen followed by two rounds of in-person interviews for some IT candidates, but not for top talent. The bottom line is this: If you see a candidate you like, buy them on the spot. Show them love now before other companies join the fray and compete for their attention.

2. Ease up on the technical requirements. Companies need to ease up on the technical requirements and stress the culture fit when hiring. I realize that IT managers are usually looking for three key skills, like .NET, MVC, and jQuery, all in one candidate. Isn’t it more important to get two of the three skills in a candidate that is a good fit for your company, rather than waiting for a candidate who may have all three skills but is not a culture fit?

For Candidates:

1. Tell them why you want the job. Candidates, you know you’re in the driver’s seat with the shortage of IT talent in the Twin Cities. That being said, it’s still important to tell companies why you are making a job transition. It’s pretty easy for companies to spot a candidate who is kicking the tires rather than making a move for the right reasons. You should develop a list of what you are looking for in a new job. That list can include things like a shorter drive, less travel, learning new skills, making a certain level or money, or working in a certain size IT department.

2. Trust your gut. It’s important to trust your gut when making a job change. If a company is dragging out the interview process, the following two things could be happening (according to my experience). First, the company has trouble making decisions (which is not the type of company you want to work for), or second the company is just not that into you.

On the other hand, if it’s a great fit, and you fall in love with them because they jumps through hoops to hire you, trust your job crush and take the job!

Content provided by Joe Janasz