By Karalie Kanneh, April 23, 2019
To say I was pleasantly surprised would be an underestimation of how I felt after attending a seminar called “Hiring and Retaining the Right Healthcare Technology Staff” during the HIMSS 2019 conference. This seminar was co-led by the DICE Group’s Neil Gomes, Chief Digital Officer and Senior VP and Robert Neff, Vice President, Digital Solution Development.
The DICE Group designs, develops, and implements digital solutions focusing on the communities surrounding Thomas Jefferson University and Jefferson Health in Philadelphia. In this seminar, Gomes and Neff discussed hiring practices at the Dice Group.
I was smiling to myself part-way through the presentation as Robert Neff discussed the specific steps “The Dice Group” takes for hiring. He stated that it was necessary for companies to partner with technical recruiters to help them source technical candidates and fill jobs. In order to stay in step with trends and achieve hiring goals, companies need to find and partner with good recruiting agencies.
Robert acknowledged that they had decades of experience being successful at hiring health professionals, but they had far less experience at finding technology leaders.
Where do they find technical talent?
The Dice Group says the best source and the place where most of their candidates originate from are from technical recruiters.
Neff went on to explain how you need to partner strategically with a technical recruiting firm and find a technical recruiter within that is collaborative and responsive to your needs. You should build a relationship with your recruiter as you would any vendor, as they will help you in any stressful, pivotal moment to fill that critical technical job. Additionally, he suggested using technical recruiters to interview, screen, and test potential candidates to take the load off the HR department. Most HR departments do not have the leads and networking skills required for sourcing technical people, nor are they trained with the skills required to handle technical candidates. Lastly, the Dice Group likes to hire on a contract-to-hire basis if possible, a try before you buy scenario. Recruiting firms can assist you with that type of hiring model.
- Find the right technical recruiting partner
- Build a relationship with your technical recruiter as with any vendor
- Use technical recruiters to your advantage to help you interview, screen, test, train, etc.
- Consider contract, contract-to-hire, and direct hire models for hiring
As a take-away, The Dice Group experiences a 4% turnover rate for engineers and an overall turnover rate of 2% across the whole team due to their hiring practices. This is a very low number especially for technical jobs.
If you are having trouble finding enough candidates to interview, then turn to a technical recruiting firm, there is no cost up front, only if you decide to move forward with a candidate. To further insure a right fit, you can choose the contract to hire model.
Benefits of partnering with a technical recruiting firm:
- With deep and already developed talent pipelines, IT & Engineering staffing agencies can drastically reduce time-to-fill cycles, finding the top talent you need quickly.
- If you have a critical project deadline to meet, a technical staffing agency can help you bring on a qualified contractor to push the project over the finish line. Also, by hiring contractors from an IT staffing firm you can reduce overhead and improve cash flow.
- Technical staffing agencies recruit active and passive They reach into sources that mainline HR departments can’t. Good technical recruiters are constantly networking and developing relationships within technical fields. They have access to candidates with specialized skill sets in a variety of industries that are difficult to find. Do you have the time to devote to being a full time technical recruiter? Technical talent is scarce and it takes time and skill to find and attract the right technical talent.
- You can use a technical agency to make more informed hiring decisions by seeing what the talent pool provides. It costs you nothing to look and work with a technical recruiting company. Contract and terms will be discussed prior to moving forward with a candidate.
- By utilizing the contract-to-hire model, you can pay as you go to ensure the right fit. After the contract phase you can often solidify with concrete proof you made the right decision.
I had no expectations when I attended this seminar. I was surprised and validated by the Dice Group’s hiring processes. I appreciate the value they place on technical recruiters. In my opinion, being a technical recruiter is one of the best jobs in the world. I get to interact with the smartest and brightest people on the face of this earth. Why don’t you give it a shot? You have nothing to lose, but everything to gain for your team and company.