Discussion: IT hiring strategies: Our CIO readers weigh in

ITKE Staff, SearchCIO.com Profile: ITKE
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IT hiring
IT jobs
In our inaugural CIO Chatter, SearchCIO.com readers weigh in on staffing expert Melisa Bockrath's advice on IT hiring strategies in tough times.

9 Comments on this article

 
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  • AKaplan
    Technical skills can more easily be learned than soft ones.
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  • PAger1
    In seeking to build the soft skills of an organisation, one needs to consider that the vast majority of skills applied in the workplace are "soft" as they relate to the individuals (and the team's) behavioral competencies. A key soft skill being the interpersonal people skills that are the core to the success of the business as such skills as communication skills, conflict resolution and negotiation, personal effectiveness, creative problem solving, strategic thinking, team building, influencing and selling skills. These skills are most often gained through practical and in-the-field experiences that cannot be attained from formal training or "textbooks". But give the staff and teams the opportunity to learn from setting challenging assignments and roles and their success becomes the organisation's success - a win-win for all concerned.
    The problem with hiring policies being that soft skills are often overlooked for the hard skills which over time become less relevant in the day to day activities of the organisation (throw out the text book position descriptions).
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  • AnonymousUser
    Because internal management teams (in many cases) lack the skills to vet IT specialists, we value pedigrees over skills - usually a big mistake as you get book smart test takers, not people with experience, thought leadership, analytic skills and ability to grasp and understand how things fit together in the big picture.
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  • AnonymousUser
    Depends upon the position. The higher the responsibility and the more personnel to be supervised, the more important soft skills become.
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  • AnonymousUser
    Combination of both - 70% Hard / 30% Soft
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  • BSwartz1
    Both hard and soft skills are important but in regards to hard skills need to look more towards IT generalist. IT technology is too diverse and changing too rapidly to expect to find a candidate with exactly the hard skills you need. Look for someone who has demonstrated work ethic, ability to adapt and intelligence to learn and apply new technology. Train them on the specifics. If you provide decent salary and challenging work they won't just run off at the first big salary offer.
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  • HGonzalez
    The hard skills can be learned, and some of the soft skills too. However, some soft skills you either have them or you don't.
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  • AnonymousUser
    Soft-skills are extremely important when hiring
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  • AnonymousUser
    Moore's law means emerging technologies will always be with us, so having demonstrated IT capabilities enhanced by soft skills to interact and learn is a winning combination.
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Expert Discussion

 

Which is most important when hiring for IT positions?

ITKE Staff, SearchCIO.com Profile: ITKE
  • ncberns
    Smart is a given. So are clever and dedicated. But most of all, I look for people who are highly collaborative. Isolated, ego-driven introverts tend to create the programs they envision, not the ones I need. We always make a place for the one-off eureka workers, but it's not in IT.
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  • ToddN2000
    In my new position, we do something I have never done before. When there is a perspective hire, they sit with everyone in the department separately for a few minutes. This way we all get a feel of how they may fit in the department. Then we discuss any issues among ourselves and see if we all feel the same. 
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  • mcorum
    One of the primary things I look for in a suitable candidate, and just had added to the job descriptions and postings, is intellectual curiosity. I find that overcomes a lack of skills. A successful career in IT requires not only constant learning, but also the initiative to seek out and implement new and innovative ideas, and that’s something that I typically see in a candidate that has a good deal of intellectual curiosity.
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