Complete Guide to IT Staffing: Definition, Models, Advantages, and Tips

February 24, 2023

16 min read

The desire of companies and businesses to keep track of and take advantage of technological advancements encourages them to look for talented IT specialists. Since the roles of these professionals are becoming more specialized, and the IT talent gap keeps on growing, it’s increasingly more difficult to find ideal candidates without the help of experienced recruiters. Only well-trained hiring managers have a clear understanding of what technical skills and subject expertise are needed to achieve the goals set by your company.

Fortunately, modern companies don’t have to look for tech specialists themselves as they can benefit from IT staffing services. This is a modern solution to the staffing problem that both simplifies the IT hiring procedure and helps employers get ideal candidates for the positions they have. Are you interested in how this is accomplished?

Let’s explore what the IT staffing process is, what it looks like, what models are popular nowadays, and what its unmatched advantages for businesses are.

What is IT Staffing?

What does IT staffing consist of? It is the process of finding competent IT job candidates with specialized skills, who will deal with technology roles, ongoing work, and complete various project tasks. This process can be accomplished internally by an HR team, but more businesses tend to entrust this important task to IT staffing service companies. These firms have much valuable experience in recruiting IT professionals, and can connect you with qualified job seekers. Using this method ends up saving a lot of time, energy and money for your company.

Every team needs professionals with a range of essential skills to complete their technology tasks. And using IT staffing is an effective way of getting the best candidates for your needs. These firms take into consideration all aspects of the position, including vacancy requirements, employer’s expectations, and many other key elements.

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Steps in the IT Staffing Process

IT staffing is a complex process which consists of 8 stages. Before a staffing professional starts the search for a perfect candidate, it’s important to identify the requirements of your company. Next they must create and execute a plan for hiring the most suitable candidates, and only then complete all of the stages of the staffing process. Let’s take a closer look at each of these steps to understand how it works.

1. Workforce and Workload Requirements

The first thing to consider at the very beginning of the staffing process is how many and what type of professionals are required by the company. This is known as the quantitative and qualitative analysis of the workforce. The recruiter develops a hiring plan, including the qualifications, tech skills, job requirements, and other important details necessary to be able to choose the right candidate for each vacant position.

2. Recruitment

What is recruiting? After all of the peculiarities of the staffing process are considered, it’s time to look for prospective candidates.  For this purpose, recruiters identify the prospects that are available in the marketplace, and then contact them personally to showcase the benefits of the position and the terms that are being offered. Finally, they need to convince them to apply for this job.

3. Selection

When the list of prospective applicants is compiled, it’s high time to evaluate the abilities and experience of the candidates. Then it can be determined which ones can best match the job roles and be able to cope with the tasks set for them. 

4. Placement and Orientation

After the selection of the proper candidates, the prioritized ones are placed for the roles meant for them. In fact, this is the posting of the new employee to the position according to his qualification, skills, and expertise. As soon as this is done, the next stage, known as orientation or induction takes place. The new employee is introduced to the basics of the organization he will work in, its policies and rules, regulations and standards of your company. This newly hired person also communicates their expectations. In some cases this stage also includes onboarding, which is the process of acquiring the specific knowledge and skills necessary to become an integral part of your department or project team.

5. Training and Development

A newbie who has already learned more about the organization should get their respective training and get prepared for the job to be able to handle the tasks given to him. This process of acquiring knowledge can be a part of the general onboarding procedure or addressed separately, but its main goal is to provide every employee with professional growth opportunities. It will encourage this person to develop and prosper, as well as have a positive impact on the quality of work done.

6. Performance Appraisal

The evaluation of the new hire’s performance made on the basis of KPIs is known as their performance appraisal. It is usually done using some standards at regular time periods, such as  monthly, quarterly, and yearly. This process helps you to conclude whether or not an employee meets the goals that were set for them. If not, it means that this person requires more training. The results of this appraisal are provided in their feedback report.

7. Promotion and Career Planning

If a person performs their work successfully, and this is confirmed by the feedback report, he or she is offered the opportunity to take a higher level job position. It would also be possible for this person to be promoted to get a higher salary and more satisfaction from their job. This works as an incentive for them to perform job responsibilities well and put more effort with the idea of possible reward in mind. 

8. Compensation

The final stage of the IT staffing process is the consideration of the financial aspects of the position. These include direct payments such as wages, salary, bonuses, commissions that can be both time-based and performance-based, as well as indirect payments like insurance, medical care, and others. It is important to guarantee an employee the proper compensation based on their qualifications, workload, achievement of their primary goals, and other factors. 

Common IT Staffing Models

IT staffing implies different approaches, which can often cause confusion. When a company comes up with the idea to choose a suitable staffing model, it’s necessary to do research and discover what needs should be fulfilled. There are several things to consider:

  • Business and project goals classification;
  • Assessment of the existing staffing environment;
  • Estimation of the further demands and factors that may influence staffing decisions;
  • Analysis of current and prospective staff gaps.

When this is done, you can proceed with making a staffing plan on the basis of the analysis results and select one of the types of staffing models that meet your needs the most accurately. What are the various staffing models to select from? Let’s find out below.

Project-based Model

A company that runs a certain project which is different from its traditional operational activities can hire an IT talent to develop this effort successfully. This person will cover specific roles within a predetermined time period and leave the company when the project is completed. Its main benefits are cost-efficiency and ease of termination.

Contract Model

This IT staffing model is great for a temporary covering of positions. Accordingly, a business signs a contract with an IT staffing agency in order to find an IT professional for a specific period of time. The ensuing mutually beneficial cooperation can last up to 12 months. Once the contract period is up, the business has the option to hire an IT professional on a permanent basis or to stop working with this person.

Contract-to-Hire Model

Companies that have an open permanent position and want to hire a specific candidate but have some hesitation about this person can use this model. It offers cooperation for an agreed upon time period for a contracted employee. This gives you time to make an employee evaluation with the possibility of offering them permanent employment when this period comes to an end. This model is an intermediate option between hiring people either temporarily or permanently. According to statistics, nearly half of the workers who prefer temporary or contract work do so to achieve permanent employment.

Mark-Up Model

The markup staffing model is used by staffing agencies or consulting firms to determine the hourly bill rate charged to clients for the services of a temporary or contract worker. Under this model, the staffing agency or consulting firm calculates the hourly bill rate by adding a markup to the worker’s hourly pay rate. The markup represents the profit margin for the staffing agency or consulting firm. 

For example, let’s say a company needs to hire a software developer for a project. They could work with a staffing agency that uses the markup staffing model to find and place a qualified candidate. The staffing agency may find a software developer with the required skills and experience and offer them an hourly pay rate of $20. The staffing agency then applies a markup of 50% to the hourly pay rate to cover their overhead costs, benefits, and profit margin. The hourly bill rate charged to the client would be $30 per hour.

Hire-Train-Deploy Model

What is a staffing model that involves hiring, training, and employment? This model is used by IT staffing providers to check out the potential of job applicants by giving them an opportunity to work on a particular project. The staffing company selects a specific number of suitable candidates that meet the job description requirements, creates a group of mentors to support the applicants, and trains new hires to work in a particular organization.

Advantages of IT Staffing

It makes no difference whether a company has an HR department or not, it is more productive to order IT staffing services if you really need to get the right candidates. The IT staffing market is going to reach $43 billion by 2027 in the US, and this is proof that such services are in great demand. Why do so many businesses prefer this way of recruiting IT specialists? The answer is hidden in the IT staffing benefits.

  • Acceleration of the hiring process: since the range of tech skills in the IT industry is really extensive and talent research is a time-consuming and painstaking process, It is more reasonable to entrust this responsible task to an IT staffing company. Recruiting experts will preview applicants, complete necessary screening processes, and identify the best candidates in a more efficient and time-savvy way.
  • Focus on flexibility: the needs of the IT market are constantly changing, so businesses look for agile professionals who can easily become an integral part of the company’s team. These top level candidates can cope with a wide diversity of responsibilities covering many different aspects of the work.
  • Taking on all the responsibilities and reducing risks: employment is a complex multi-step procedure that can become a burden for a company, but IT staffing experts know all the peculiarities of this procedure, including labor laws and taxes, so any risks or challenges are avoided.
  • A careful search for talent and their skill at attracting them to your team: staffing services seek professionals who possess all the soft and hard skills required for completing company-specific tasks. They analyze not only job seekers but also employed professionals to find the best candidate for you and encourage him or her to change their position and join your team.
  • Cost-efficiency: it is important to mention that the hiring process involves a range of expenditures such as paying salary, covering insurance, maintaining a workspace, using accountant services, and more. With IT staffing, you can save on these expenses and avoid other challenges connected with recruitment.

Whether it’s because of this range of advantages or the positive experience of applicants and businesses that have used IT staffing services, 77% of millennial clients plan to increase their use of staffing companies in the next five years. 

 What Does An Ideal IT Staffing Strategy Look Like?

There are employees who give any business a competitive edge, so it’s vital to have the best personnel which can be found with the help of IT staffing. But is there a solid staffing plan that can be called ideal? The best goals will be achieved if you follow these steps.

Define Your IT Staffing Needs

It is crucial to identify the existing gaps between your current needs and your existing resources to find out who exactly must be employed. In general, staffing needs are the number of workers required by a particular organization, but you should also consider much more than just the quantity of immediate hiring needs. It is important to do the following:

  • Create a list of current projects and goals to understand what skills are needed;
  • Assess the skills and workload of the existing team and their trainability in order to define the gaps that need to be filled;
  • Establish roles for your new team members so as to develop the right vacancy description for your needs.

“A modern recruiter is one who is targeted, builds relationships and knows how to not only find candidates but also get them to respond!”

Stacy Donovan Zapar, recruiting professional for Fortune 500 tech companies

Find the Right IT Staffing Agency

Only professionals can cope with handling recruitment roles efficiently, so your choice of the staffing agency you use is as responsible a task as defining the needs of your company. Many staffing companies call themselves experts in connecting employers with job seekers, but if you need an IT specialist with specific tech skills, it is better to turn to a company that has a deep understanding of your industry and niche. It should focus on professionals working with informational technology, since engaging quality candidates is possible only if you have a large database of prospects.

Other things that should be considered in choosing an IT staffing agency include:

  • The cost of services;
  • Understanding of the recruitment process adopted by the agency;
  • Discovering the ways a staffing agency sources its talent and screens candidates;
  • Average recruitment time.

Create a Job Description

When you have decided which position is vacant and which skills are of utmost importance for your business, it is time to create a quality job description. 52% of applicants admit that this description influences their decision to apply for a job, so it should contain not only essential responsibilities, activities, qualifications, and skills, but also important company details. The structure of an informative and convincing job description looks as follows:

  • A specific job title;
  • Attention-grabbing job summary with an introduction about the company and an exact job location;
  • Outlining responsibilities, duties, and the specifications of how this position fits into the organization;
  • Listing qualifications, hard and soft skills;
  • Adding a salary range and benefits.

Interview Candidates

Effective interviews are an essential part of the hiring process since they can tell you much about a prospective employee. An interview will shed light on the person’s job history, career aspirations, and their expectations. This is all in addition to the information provided in the CV. However, it is necessary to prepare a list of questions to be asked, take notes during the interview, and ask specific questions to ensure that everything that is said is true. These steps are necessary to make the proper conclusions about an interviewee.

Make Your Final Decision

After all the stages of the IT staffing process are completed, the only thing left to do is to make the choice of the best-suited candidate. What should you keep in mind to avoid making a mistake? Experts advise making the selection of the two most suitable applicants. If you can’t choose yet and a position doesn’t need to be filled immediately, it is possible to suggest a project to both candidates and make the final decision on the basis of the results received.

How to Choose an IT Staffing Company

What attributes make an IT staffing company worth your attention and trust? In addition to the hints given above, one more great way to choose an IT staffing company is to analyze their referrals. The best method is to listen to the review of a trustworthy acquaintance, but if you haven’t got one of those, it makes sense to look through the company’s website, browse its portfolio, and their reviews on the Internet. 

It is reasonable to make a list of companies that appeal the most to you and schedule calls with their representatives to assess their expertise by asking questions prepared in advance. You should pay attention to the way agency employees communicate. Are their responses fast? Do they provide you with all the needed information? Do they ask the right questions? The way they communicate with you now is pretty much the same as they will communicate with you as a client in the future. 

One more thing to consider is the area of work: if you look for IT staffing in particular locations, you should check to see if the agency has experience working in this area.

Bottom Line

Recruiting and staffing for a company is a complex and challenging task that requires specialized knowledge and skills. As a result, many companies are turning to professional recruitment companies to meet their HR needs. By outsourcing their staffing needs, companies can reduce recruiting costs, get increased new hire productivity, and hire top talent with specialized skill sets.

This trend is leading to a shift away from traditional in-house HR departments towards external staffing solutions. Professional recruitment companies provide a range of staffing models and multi-stage staffing processes to meet the specific needs of their clients. However, choosing the right IT staffing team is crucial to ensure that the company’s expectations are met and the best industry-ready professionals are provided.

What does the process of IT recruitment consist of

IT recruitment is a process where a team of experts identifies job vacancies needed to be filled, analyzes the job requirements, and searches for suitable candidates for this position. When all the applications are reviewed and most suitable candidates are subjected to screening and shortlisting, the team makes the choice of the best hire.

What is staffing technology and software?

Staffing technology is a term used to describe a range of systems, processes, and software utilized by modern recruiting teams. They usually include internal databases, applicant tracking systems (ATS), and complex web-based job boards that make the recruitment process faster and more effective.

What are the benefits of IT staffing?

When you choose IT staffing over other recruitment methods, you can expect to have access to a much wider pool of candidates, save time and money on the hiring process, and be protected from tech hiring scams as well.

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