Eight out of 10 (81 percent) IT professionals indicate that they are open to new job opportunities even when happily employed and not actively seeking another job, according to a report from IT talent management and services specialist TEKsystems.
IT leaders also seem to be aware of this issue, with 92 percent reporting that they believe their IT professionals are open to new opportunities regardless of being satisfied with their current position.
The report found IT professionals are receiving an average of 34 solicitations per week—a significant increase from a 2012 survey that indicated IT professionals were receiving an average of 23 solicitations per week.
“The IT job market is absolutely one of the strongest areas in the economy right now, and that’s not expected to change any time soon,” Jason Hayman, market research manager of TEKsystems, told eWEEK. “Finding IT talent in the current market is incredibly difficult. As a point of reference, the July 2014 IT unemployment rate was 2.3 percent compared to the overall rate of 6.2 percent.”
The survey also found more than three-quarters (77 percent) of IT professionals report that they submit more than 10 resumes in a given week, with 21 percent reporting that they submit more than 40 resumes.
More than 80 percent of IT leaders view networking and recruiting firms as the most effective means to finding qualified candidates, while the use of job boards ranks near the bottom, at 43 percent.
Comparatively, 70 percent of IT professionals believe third-party online job boards are the most effective, followed by professional or personal networks (69 percent) and recruiting and staffing firms (61 percent).
More than two-thirds (68 percent) of IT leaders report that they use social media to source candidates and 82 percent indicate that they use it to screen candidates, with IT leaders ranking screening candidates, validating resume claims and sourcing qualified candidates as the top reasons for using social media.
The report noted that with social media use continually becoming more widespread, it is important for potential employees and companies to understand how their own reputations can be affected by negative online posts, as online behavior can put candidates at a disadvantage when being compared to similarly skilled competition.
“As you would expect, LinkedIn stands out as the most heavily leveraged and effective by a wide margin. Our research indicates that 64 percent of IT pros say LinkedIn is the most effective resource,” Hayman said. “But they’re also leveraging Facebook, Google+ and Twitter to learn more about potential employers – less as a submission tool – but more to monitor company reputation.”
Seventy-six percent of IT leaders believe that IT resumes exaggerate a candidate’s true experience, with 60 percent of IT professionals agreeing that resumes contain exaggerations and buzzwords not reflective of a candidate’s true experience.
“The number of unqualified applicants starts with just the sheer number of resumes in circulation, and the ability to submit for published opportunities,” Hayman said. “Technologies have made it incredibly easy to submit credentials. There isn’t much to lose for a candidate to apply for positions for which they may be unqualified.”