What to Look For in Your Next Great IT Hire

What to Look For in Your Next Great IT Hire

The world is constantly changing and technology is at the core of many of these changes. Almost every company needs some sort of IT personnel to help their company run successfully. Whether you are a company starting out, or an established company looking to revamp its technology department, there are certain aspects to keep in mind when searching for your new IT hire. 

As you look to hire new employees, there are some crucial items to consider before making the hire. Just like any hire for your company, you want to make sure they are a good fit for your company and the culture that is already established. You want to hire someone that is a hard worker and stays up to date with current technology trends. 

When someone mentions the idea of being a lifelong learner, that should be music to your hiring ears. This shows that they enjoy learning which is important in the IT world, as new information can be available at a rapid pace. 

As you search to add the best candidate to your IT department, take your time in finding the candidate that not only has both strong technical skills, but also awesome problem solving, communication and people skills. 

Hire A Problem Solver

In the IT world, technology breaks, and the unfortunate truth is that it breaks often. The last thing you want to deal with when trying to sort through a technology error is dealing with a difficult IT person on top of the error. 

When looking to make a new IT hire, see what kind of perspective and outlook the person has when it comes to problem-solving. As you interview the candidate, give them a variety of problems and solution scenarios to see how they would solve different issues that could arise. 

You want to hire someone that naturally perseveres but is also able to communicate well when working to solve a problem. Problem-solving with technology can be downright frustrating and exhausting at times. It is important to be able to trust that your IT hire will be able to solve the problem efficiently and effectively. 

What Are Soft Skills and Why Are They Important 

In the IT world, it used to be that what mattered most was your skills in regards to technology. Although tech skills are still crucial when it comes to making a new IT hire, so are soft skills. Soft skills refer to skills such as communication and problem-solving. 

When everyone at a company has strong interpersonal skills, including the IT director, the company tends to thrive. This can lead to a higher retention rate and success rate. It makes sense if you think about it. A large part of solving tech problems is talking to customers and employees about what they need to get the technology working again. 

Even though many IT employees may sit behind a computer screen for most of their day, they are still communicating digitally or virtually with others. Hire someone that not only knows their technology but also understands the need to have strong people skills as well. 

Credibility and Certification Matter

The world of information technology is becoming more and more competitive. In order for a candidate to be a strong competitor, they need to have both experience and strong background knowledge in their field. 

Just like a doctor wouldn’t practice medicine without a degree from a credible medical school, your new IT hire shouldn’t be your technology expert without the certifications and training to back up their skill set. 

If you aren’t familiar with all of the technology certifications that are available, you should know that there are a lot out there. You may already have certain certifications in mind that you are looking for. Keep in mind that there are some technology certifications that are more credible than others. 

What makes them more credible is the requirements that typically include more in-depth training and the need to renew the certificate after a certain time frame. As you get to know the potential candidates during the interview process, take some time to ask them not only what certifications they currently have, but also how willing they are to continue to gain knowledge. 

Find the Right Fit 

As you look for the perfect candidate for your IT needs, it is important to keep in mind both your current technology needs for your company, but also potential future IT needs as well. Think about different potential scenarios you may have with clients or employees in your office. 

As more and more people are entering the IT field, they are becoming more specialized with certain skill sets. Take a little bit of time to research and network with other companies that have made recent IT hires and see what they looked for in a prospective candidate. 

An IT hire is not a one size fits all kind of hire. Your company has unique needs and you will need a unique person to meet those technology needs. As you talk with different candidates, give them sample scenarios that your company may encounter and see whether or not you believe their skill set would fit with what you are looking for in an IT hire. 

Hiring a new employee can be a nerve-wracking process. However, it doesn’t have to be if you take the time to narrow down the applicants to the candidates that fit the needs and culture of your company. As you get to know the potential new IT hire during the interview process, focus on conversations around both their specific technical skills and soft skills. 

Keep in mind that you want a candidate that already has specific IT certifications and more importantly, is willing and eager to continue their training even after they are hired. Take your time in choosing a candidate that is right for all of your technology needs and you won’t need to go through the hiring process again any time soon as you find your great hire the first time. 

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