Leading the talent acquisition function of a growing company has a lot of unique challenges. There are some days when it seems like your team will never hit its hiring goals. On other occasions, you’re feeling the pressure to reduce your tech recruitment budget while maintaining your recruiters’ current output.
But in today’s competitive market, overemphasizing cost-cutting measures could make developer hiring an even more difficult task. Not only should your recruitment goals influence your overall cost-per-technical-hire, they often justify an increase in recruitment spend.
Tech recruiting isn’t always straightforward. Most companies are looking to scale their engineering teams, and candidate pools can be unpredictable at best. As a result, talent acquisition leaders are creating long-term strategies to fill immediate technical roles and improve pipeline health for future positions. Often, this proves to be an effective approach—but it comes at a higher cost.
Think of the toughest developer job that you’re working on right now. Assuming that your hiring managers understand that it might take months to find the right candidate, let’s say that your short-term goal is to improve your employer branding for that role. While this is still critical to your overall success, it might not directly generate the ideal developer applicant. That doesn’t mean it shouldn’t factor into your overall cost-per-hire on that role.
Does this mean that your expenses to find the right developer will be higher? In all likelihood, absolutely. But if your tech recruitment goals were to improve your pipeline and build relationships with passive candidates, that shouldn’t be considered a negative.
Best-selling author Dr. John Sullivan recently made the argument that organizations should be raising their cost-per-hire instead of reducing it. He identified ten reasons why cost-cutting damages your recruiting results. We’ll take a closer look at two of them.
First, Sullivan writes that winning in a competition is always expensive. He adds, “You are often competing against firms that are willing to spend much more. And although recruiting itself is expensive, successfully hiring top talent may cost up to 50 percent more in recruiter and management time alone.” The harsh reality is that many companies are already increasing their developer hiring spend, and to keep up with them, you can’t slash your budget.
Sullivan also argues that low costs could result in slower hiring. “If you cut costs by understaffing either recruiters or your administrative team, your time to fill will increase dramatically,” he says. “These cost-cutting created delays will mean an increase in costly vacant position days.” Although the time-to-hire metric is a hotly debated topic, reducing your tech recruiting budget would likely increase the number of days it takes to hire developers.