Almost half of new ICT hires not up to the job

Businesses across A/NZ must change recruitment methods to ensure new staff have the skills needed for the role

Enterprises across Australia and New Zealand have suffered significant financial and productivity losses as a result of almost half of their new ICT hires being not up to the job, according to a survey by recruitment firm Hudson.

The annual survey, which examined 1000 employers and 1300 employees across the region, found 44 per cent of new hires are considered “not good” by their employers. It also indicated that the ongoing skills shortage and a competitive employment market had left businesses under pressure to employ staff and making poor hiring decisions.

Hudson ICT national practice director, Martin Retschko, said businesses must look to change their recruitment processes to accommodate current market conditions, defined by low levels of unemployment and an increasingly mobile workforce.

“The current employment landscape is complex and there is increasing pressure on organisations to both find the right people to fill particular roles and improve the overall quality of new hires,” Retschko said in a statement.

“Businesses are clearly failing to make the right decisions with nearly half of new employees considered ‘not good’.

“The potential impact of this is huge. The cost of a bad hire can be enormous, not just to productivity but also to employee engagement, staff morale, and wasted resources and investment throughout the recruitment process.

"There remains far too little focus on investing in the right process to ensure a new hire is right for an organisation and a specific role.”

The skills shortage continued to impact on employers, Retschko said, with 63 per cent of employers reporting they and their employees are under constant pressure and under-resourced. However, less than half of the employers surveyed indicated they had enough applicants to fill the roles they needed to.

According to Retschko, relief from the skills shortage is not in sight with a “restless and mobile” workforce exacerbating the issue.

“People across all professions are now increasingly confident they can move, with six in 10 employees seeking a new job and over 81 per cent saying they plan to leave their current role within the next two years,” he said.

“These figures are very high and potentially, employers could begin to lose talent faster than they can hire.”

Retschko advised employers to revise their hiring strategy in order to improve the quality of new hires, and cited a need to evaluate a potential employees’ attitude and motivation as well as how they fit culturally into the business.

When measures are taken to examine motivation or culture in the hiring process, Retschko said 91 per cent of hires were regarded as “excellent or good”.

However, the survey reported only six per cent of employers evaluated a candidate’s ‘want to’ or motivation and potential fit for the role, with the majority focusing on the ‘know how’ or traditional methods which include reference checking (90 per cent), background interviews (74 per cent) and resume screening (71 per cent).

Follow Chloe Herrick on Twitter: @chloe_CW

Follow Computerworld Australia on Twitter: @ComputerworldAU

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Tags IT careersemploymentHudson ICTMartin Retschko

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