Refresh & Revive your Entry-Level Tech Talent Strategy

The tech workforce is evolving quickly…have your hiring practices evolved at the same speed?! 

The constant ups and downs of the industry and new digital trends emerging rapidly means job descriptions look a little different in today’s world. Many employers are prioritizing soft skills and seek out employees who are continuous learners and have the drive and ability to keep up with the latest industry trends. 

Instead of looking for the “perfect hire”, forward-thinking companies are looking to invest in an entry-level talent pipeline that will stay and grow with the company, no matter what’s next on the horizon for the tech industry.

Refresh your entry-level talent strategy with these tips:

Tip #1 - Diversify Your Source
The pandemic resulted in a shake-up of the traditional higher-education model – the way people learn tech skills has changed, and entry-level recruiting practices must evolve to keep up. If your company’s recruitment strategy relies solely on college job fairs, it’s time to think outside the box! 

There are so many other sources to connect with entry-level technologists and tap into often overlooked pools of talent. Look for tech meet-ups, attend coding hackathons, scan for potential candidates on LinkedIn, or partner with an alternative skilling program. In today's world, many students learn technical skills via nontraditional pathways like coding bootcamps, online programs or free training programs like LaunchCode.


Tip #2 - Consider “Career-Changers”.
The majority of LaunchCoders fall into the category of “career-changers” looking to transition out of their current job and enter a career in technology, often for higher wages, stability and increased opportunity for growth. If your company isn’t actively seeking career-changers, you’re missing out on a huge source of untapped talent! 

Mid-career apprentices and new hires are attractive because of the skills and life experience they possess that translate well to a career in technology. For example, at LaunchCode, we’ve reskilled teachers into Scrum Masters and have seen their leadership skills and multitasking abilities transfer over to their new roles and add immense value to the team. 


Tip #3 -  Try an Apprenticeship Model.
Apprenticeship is a win-win for both the employer and the apprentice, which is why LaunchCode believes so deeply in this model! 

Taking on an apprentice means vetting a candidate while they learn on the job and equipping them with the exact skill set needed for the role. Companies are often more willing to take a risk on a new hire with a non-traditional resume through the apprenticeship model, so it’s a great way to open the door to someone just stepping into the industry. 


Tip #4 - Foster Mentorship.
Involving your more seasoned employees in your entry-level talent strategy often creates a stronger overall talent pipeline. We encourage our hiring partners to assign apprentices a mentor within the company – someone to guide them through their first job in tech and help acclimate them to the company culture. 

Mentorship also allows the more senior employee to feel invested in the junior talent pipeline and pass on historical knowledge or learnings. We’ve seen LaunchCode apprentices convert into permanent roles within their company and move up to become a mentor to incoming apprentices...that's a win in our book! 


Tip #5 - Adapt a Career Growth Mindset. 
The cost of recruiting, hiring, training and onboarding employees is roughly one third of that person’s yearly salary, not to mention the time lost by bringing in someone new to replace the current employee. Adapting a “career growth mindset” and truly investing in the career trajectory of entry-level employees will help retain good talent and avoid costly turnover.

How can you show employees you care about their growth and development? Give entry-level workers opportunities to reskill and keep competencies relevant, connect them with mentors (see tip #4!), provide opportunities for them to meet and learn from other industry pros and recognize employees who go above and beyond when growing their skills.

In need of a recruitment refresh, but don’t know where to start? Reach out to LaunchCode to connect with locally-trained, passionate entry-level talent today!