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Post by Rich Moy on Aug 29, 2018 12:00:00 PM

As the summer winds down, this is an ideal time for your technical recruiters to prepare for one final push to fill their critical open roles. Because they face intense competition for tech talent, they’re probably laser-focused on nothing but hitting their hiring goals before the end of the year.

But for talent acquisition managers, the next few months are important for identifying priorities for 2019 and beyond. Which developer roles will you need to hire for this time next year, and what will it cost to do so?

Still, with looming deadlines remaining for the current calendar year, it’s easy to delay creating future recruitment budgets until it’s absolutely necessary. To help jumpstart your 2019 planning, here are a few benefits of starting right now.

Supporting the Organization’s Long-Term Vision

In a recent article for CIO Magazine, Mary Pratt argued that an IT budget is an indicator of an executive team’s roadmap for the future and what they’re willing to pay for it. While anticipating technical needs for 2019 is a good start, Pratt argues that IT budgets should support a company’s long-term strategy. “It needs to also create a vision for three to five years,” she writes. “Leading CIOs do that by ensuring there’s money there for initiatives that lay the groundwork for the organization’s future state.”

So how should CIOs choose which projects get funded, and how does your technical recruitment budget fit into this picture? Andy Roswell-Jones, Vice President and Research Director for Gartner’s CIO & Executive Leadership Research team, told Pratt later in the article that CIOs should follow one simple rule: “Put more money into stars; don’t put money into lemons.”

With that in mind, it’s easy to argue that they should dedicate a good portion of that money to hiring additional developers. Not only will your current programmers need more resources, but they’ll also need more help to support the company’s growth. Understanding the long-term strategy will enable you to make a stronger business case for your increased spend, avoid being caught off-guard by future hiring priorities, and align your tech recruitment budget with executives’ goals.

Setting and Understanding Budget Expectations

Managers tend to dread budgeting for an upcoming year because they anticipate at least some amount of pushback from their executive team. But Mary Shacklett of TechRepublic says that most C-level officials conduct pre-budget-cycle meetings to determine each team’s budget increase allowance for the upcoming year. Shacklett also argues that managers should use this to their advantage, long before the end of a calendar year.

“Often, they will come up with a figure and then tell managers of various departments in advance of budgeting what to plan for,” she writes. “Understanding corporate expectations in advance can go a long way in helping you to lay out your budget—because you already know what types of budget increases they are expecting you to present for approval.”

Let’s say that in your case, the C-level team gave you approval for a 10% increase in your tech recruitment budget. This might sound vague at first, but if you’ve worked with the company’s engineering leaders to understand their long-term vision, this gives you plenty of context to allocate (and increase) resources appropriately. If that technical roadmap aligns with the organization’s goals, your executives probably won’t be surprised by your proposed tech recruitment spend. Doing this work in advance will eliminate anxiety about getting your budget approved and allow you to focus on supporting the company through developer hiring.



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