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3 Mistakes to Avoid When Setting Tech Recruitment Goals

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​​What are your main tech recruitment goals this year? Answers to this question often go something like, “To hire more developers” or “To hire more BI analysts”. But that’s just stating the obvious. In order for your recruitment strategy to be as effective as possible, you need to be more specific.

Your overarching recruitment objectives should be built on a foundation of smaller milestones. As a talent acquisition leader, goal setting is one of the most important parts of your job. So it’s important to give it the attention it deserves. Done right, technical hiring can have a huge impact on your entire organisation. It works best when you follow the principles of SMART goal setting.

To help you outline more meaningful tech recruitment goals, let’s look at a few mistakes that should try to avoid.

Setting Unmeasurable Goals

Your tech recruitment goals can impact everything from your sourcing strategy to your employer's brand for tech talent. But regardless of the end goal, you should be able to measure results along the way.

For example, you could say you want to increase the number of applications for aFront-end developer role by the end of the month. If you receive an average of five applications per month, you’d technically achieve your goal by getting six. This is probably not what you had in mind at the outset. To avoid this kind of ambiguity, your goals should be quantified and have a time limit.

A better goal would be to aim for a 20% increase in applications over the next quarter. Not only is this a much more meaningful statement, it also provides you with a yardstick to track your progress.

Setting Hiring Goals That Don’t Align With Your Business Goals

Even though competition for tech talent is fiercer than it’s ever been, you should never hire just for the sake of doing your job. Successfully hiring two talented back-end developers might be cause for celebration, but not if your engineering manager has shifted gears and want their teams to optimise the front-end of your website.

Your technical team are laying the foundations of your company’s future. So it’s critical that your tech recruitment goals are in line with the direction your organisation is heading in. Don’t sit around waiting for technical hiring managers to provide updates. Meet with them regularly to discuss what your team has been working on and ask them for their input.  You might confirm the roles you are recruiting for are still urgent, but in other cases, you might realise it makes more sense to pause one talent search to launch a different one targeting another skill set.

Setting Goals Without Deadlines

It’s very hard to predict when a particular talent search will end. As you are probably well aware, some technical roles are much harder to recruit for than others. Still, there should have a timeline outlining when you plan to either achieve or re-assess all of your SMART goals.

This approach might sound too inflexible, but deadlines eliminate uncertainty around your hiring process in multiple ways. It forces you to think through the resources required to complete a task. For instance, if you think one of your goals will take you a full year to achieve, document the reasons why and refer back to it whenever to hit a roadblock in your hiring plans.

Furthermore, having deadlines for each goal allows you to plan more strategically over an extended period. If you know you’re likely to struggle to meet a deadline for a role that is particularly hard to hire for, then it makes sense to rely on outside help from a recruitment agency.