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What is recruitment going to look like for tech companies in 2021?

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Nicole Doughton Other, Spectrum IT Updates

Spectrum IT Recruitment (South), a specialist software and technology recruitment company based at the University’s Science Park near Southampton, is well placed to comment on the recruitment activity of technology companies that it has seen during 2020 and what it expects to see during 2021.

Spectrum IT continues to support numerous businesses in finding suitable software developers and software engineers, for permanent employee roles and temporary resource for specific projects or other short-term requirements and provides a valuable service to candidates looking for IT roles in the region.

Ian Cruickshank, managing director, said: “Spectrum IT supports businesses of all sizes with specialist software recruitment alongside other core technology recruitment. Based on what we have seen, technology is probably one of the sectors that has been the most resilient to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and often new opportunities have come along. We did see some companies pause their recruitment at the start of Q2 2020, but for many this was only a temporary phase, while they reassessed and replanned. Many companies have had to adapt their business models to incorporate technological enhancements to their products and services and to support how they engage with their clients/ customers, and this has resulted in an increase in demand for specialist IT resource.” 

Technology is moving on at a fast pace and any business that is software based or uses software in its core processes is constantly having to evolve and in many cases the way that we have had to operate during the pandemic has hastened these changes. From the middle of 2020 the demand for software developers has been strong and Spectrum IT has seen many good candidates receive multiple job offers. There is no sign of this demand slowing down, resulting in the inevitable upward pressure on remuneration packages. 

Cruickshank commented: “Employes tend to know their worth and companies who undervalue their staff run the risk of losing them.” 

The roles carried out by IT personnel can be well suited to homeworking. The circumstances of 2020 have hastened the adaptation of how employers work as Covid-19 has provided organisations with the opportunity to rethink their office space and working practices. As geographical location to an office base has become less critical this has provided employers with access to a larger talent pool of candidates which can significantly increase the available options when searching for specialist skill sets. Likewise, jobs may become more attractive to candidates as self-imposed boundaries on travel times and distances become less significant or even disappear. Spectrum IT has observed how the recruitment and on-boarding processes have evolved over the past few months. 

Cruickshank added: “Once clients have decided to recruit, in the main they are engaged in the process and it is rare for recruitment to be paused or put-on hold part way through. We are seeing that most early stage and a significant number of final stage interviews take place via video conferencing or by telephone. This usually results in a much faster process to appointment stage as there is more flexibility on getting interviews set up.” 

Spectrum IT has enhanced its own in-house video conferencing suite and meeting area which clients and candidates can use if they do not have their own suitable facilities. Remote onboarding programmes have developed and become more useful and welcoming, and we have observed the appointment of ‘buddies’ to help with the settling in process. 

In 2021, Spectrum IT expects to see the demand for software developers to remain strong as companies need specialist skills to continue to develop. With its good local market knowledge, and a large network of candidates that it can access when sourcing candidates to meet specific client requirements, Spectrum IT is well placed to continue to support businesses through the recruitment process. 


First published in the Business Magazine (businessmag.co.uk) - January/February 2021.