The Industry’s Recruiting Trends, Challenges and Needs

The Resourceful HR team recently conducted a survey among technology organizations around the Puget Sound region to gain insight into the sector’s recruiting and hiring practices. Participants included CEOs, HR Directors, COOs, CFOs, HR Managers and Office Managers who are responsible for recruiting. We are excited to give you a preview of some of the results. You can download all the results here.

The survey was designed to obtain insight into the recruiting needs and challenges the local technology industry is experiencing as well as to gain a better understanding of what organizations can do to source and attract top talent. We learned a lot!…including tech organizations’ perspectives on whether the region has a STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) -related skill shortage and whether the talent the industry requires to grow and innovate resides in the Puget Sound region.

Overall, it is interesting to note that findings from Resourceful HR’s 2012 and 2013 Puget Sound region recruiting surveys indicate that finding quality talent remains a key challenge and a critical business objective. Organizations consistently shared the most effective way in which they attract quality candidates, which we know is no surprise, is giving candidates the opportunity to work on challenging and cutting edge projects.

Our survey also indicated that a number of organizations are doing things to decrease the shortage of STEM skills through both internal and external initiatives. While many organizations are finding the talent they need in the Puget Sound region, the majority of organizations surveyed are also looking outside the region to find the skill sets required and some technology organizations are likely to set up operations in alternative locations.

The most common recruiting challenge shared was the lack of quality candidates. Most organizations reported that they struggle with finding potential candidates and selling them on their positions. All organizations surveyed agree that employee referrals remain a highly effective and impactful method for building a successful team. In addition, there has been a significant growth in the amount of time hiring managers are spending monthly on proactively networking to find candidates for potential future hire.

As the industry continues to grow, ensuring our region is poised to attract, find and retain quality talent is mission critical. We welcome your questions and look forward to continuing the discussion, gaining your insights and putting this data into action.

jen olsen


Jennifer Olsen, SPHR, CCP, President, Resourceful HR

Jennifer founded Resourceful HR in 2007 with over a decade of human resource experience. She is a graduate of the University of Washington where she earned her MBA and BA and holds a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) certification, a Certified Compensation Professional (CCP) certification and is trained in AIRS recruiting methodologies. Jennifer has advised clients on an array of HR issues including successful recruitment techniques, quick integration strategies for new employees, employee compensation and rewards and employee performance. She has been quoted in Forbes, co-chairs the HR Group for the Washington Biotechnology and Biomedical Association (WBBA), serves as Board President of AHOPE for Children, a non-profit organization focused on assistance programs for vulnerable children in Ethiopia and serves on the Board of Directors and as Screening Chair for Seraph Capital Forum. In 2012 she was honored by the Puget Sound Business Journal with the ’40 Under 40’ award, which recognizes influential Seattle-area business leaders who demonstrate dynamic leadership and excel in their industry and in their community. In 2013, she received the Distinguished Alumni of the Year Award from the University of Washington Bothell School of Business.

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