Hiring Engineers Shouldn’t Be as Difficult as Engineering

When people want to say that a task shouldn’t be as difficult as it is, they often exclaim, “it’s not rocket science!” Perhaps it would be more fitting if they said, “it’s not engineering.” This profession requires employees to attain distinctive skills and a complex working knowledge so they can develop new products for a variety of applications and industries. As a result, it can be difficult to find engineers who are qualified to fill these roles.

The high demand for these professionals doesn’t help, either. Companies need to offer competitive salaries and great working conditions to attract top-quality candidates. This often leaves smaller firms at a severe disadvantage. If you’re a hiring manager at one such agency, you probably have your work cut out for you when it comes to staffing.

So how do you overcome these difficulties and start hiring engineers who meet your standards? The following are just a few tips that can help you make the most of your efforts.

Use Your Reputation to Find Better Candidates

Industry news travels quickly. It’s in workers’ best interests to know who offers the best working conditions, so they talk frequently with one another to gain this information. Unfortunately, very few people use this to their advantage. You can actually use these channels as a way to promote your business and attract better engineering talent.

This process starts with an evaluation of your reputation. How do current and former employees feel about your company? What are your strengths and what can be improved?

Once you’ve gotten a sense of these issues, you should consider how you can act on them. If your employees describe certain assignments as exciting or fulfilling, promote these projects in your job postings. When people praise particular parts of your office culture, think of the ways in which you could emphasize them. These actions won’t just help you hire engineers—they’ll  also make your company better for current employees.

Make Your Expectations Clearer on Job Postings

Vague job postings are the bane of many hiring processes. Oftentimes, descriptions are so vague that they confuse applicants. Talented engineers don’t have any trouble finding work, so they won’t go to the trouble of trying to interpret these ads if they don’t speak to them up front.

To draft an effective job ad, you need to establish your expectations in the clearest way possible. Use concrete metrics that explain the exact responsibilities of the job. Remember to keep your expectations in check as well. If you seek overqualified candidates, you’ll rule out many great candidates before they even have the chance to apply.

Gain Access to Passive Candidates

Hunting for engineers is tricky because the most promising candidates are probably already employed. These professionals are known as “passive” candidates, and they’re extremely desirable. You can try to headhunt these workers, but it may be difficult to reach out to them without raising employers’ suspicions.

To recruit passive candidates, try to find an intermediary who can put you in touch with these workers. A great referral may cause a skilled engineer to consider making the leap to your company.

Recruiting Firms Can Make the Job Easier

Recruiting firms make hiring engineers a breeze. These companies maintain active databases full of workers in nearly any industry. They also network constantly, so they’ll have no trouble setting you up with ideal candidates.

If you work with a recruiter, you’re more likely to experience a shorter, cheaper hiring process. As a result, you’ll save resources and still find the perfect engineer for your needs.

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Shannon Telepanich

Shannon Telepanich

Shannon is a Sr. Engineering Recruiter at the Ian Martin Group; a recruiter who is as much at home qualifying candidates and communicating with clients as building a search strategy. She has an in-depth understanding of search tools, skill requirements and ability to leverage professional networks to allow swift design and ability to impact strategic talent sourcing strategies that dive deep into industry sectors to identify game changers. When Shannon isn’t recruiting she is busy with two tenacious kidos and a big shaggy dog; A lover of all things nature minus the bugs.
Shannon Telepanich