5 suggestions for carrying out successful IT recruitment


About half of our recruitment projects are related to the IT sector, which is why we believe we have a comprehensive overview of the candidates’ expectations and the labour market in this area.

Our Recruitment Partner Heleen Anderson shares 5 recommendations for carrying out successful recruitment for IT profiles during the current times.


1. To find experienced IT Specialists, the most effective (and sometimes, the only possible) method is direct search (headhunting), which entails proactively approaching potential candidates for the vacant position. 

What’s important to consider when planning your headhunting process, is that the number of people to reach out to personally, is generally larger than in any other domain (e.g – when looking for a sales, marketing or finance specialist). Therefore, be ready to contribute your time and resources into the headhunting process.

As a comparison, to find a skilled Software Engineer in Estonia requires approaching, on average, 100 potential candidates personally, whilst a Marketing Manager can be found with direct offers to perhaps 20-30 people.


2. The direct approach should include a value proposition, which includes the project/work content in detail, and professional development opportunities in technological terms. No IT Specialist wants to join a company where he would potentially lose out on his existing technical competence and professional competitiveness, which means that in addition to the project content, the technological stack, modern tools and work methods are extremely important.

Also, candidates often highlight that for them it’s important to have high technical standards as well as other senior-level specialists in the team – from whom to learn. The more a company already has well-experienced experts, the more attractive it is for new specialists who are eager to learn and raise their own level of competence.


3. The recruitment process and candidate closing (accepting the final job offer) are generally more complex, because an IT Specialist who is currently open to discuss the job opportunity is likely to do the same with several other companies as well.

The IT job market is international, and in addition to local companies, also multinational technology companies such as Google, Amazon and Facebook, are keeping their eye on our local talents.

In addition, the candidates’ current employers are not eager to let a valued specialist leave, and we recommend to be prepared for a counteroffer. To be able to close the recruitment successfully, the strategy needs to be carefully thought through, and an excellent candidate experience must be provided throughout the recruitment process.


4. The candidate market in IT sector is continually active – specialists tend to attend interviews in different companies and switch jobs more often. What’s important to note is that information and reputation about different employers moves around a lot by word of mouth. Therefore, both positive and negative working experience, as well as candidate experience, reaches far more people than expected.

A positive working experience enables organizations to build up successful referral programs, which motivate IT Specialists to refer their friends and acquaintances to also join the company. Based on personal contact, they are likely to already know about the company and it’s internal climate at least a little bit.

In case of negative work or candidate experience, internal processes must be improved as fast as possible, because even with expert marketing campaigns, a negative word of mouth is very difficult to stop and turn around.


5. If the need for IT Specialists is numerous or some roles are very complex and specific, we recommend to work on creating a future candidate pipeline.

A well-managed candidate pipeline will create a list of potential candidates who are up to date with your company news, and ready to consider a job offer at a suitable time. It’s important to provide them an excellent candidate experience and keep them engaged with the organization’s developments, for example by inviting them to specialized professional events arranged by the company.


More detailed advice and tips on recruiting IT specialists can be found in Äripäev IT Management online handbook.

The article was also published on IT news website