Recruitment in tech: What do IT professionals look for when considering a career change?

Hands shaking recruitment hero image

While in the past, salaries were the dominant factor, nowadays, people are also looking at other points in recruitment advertisements, says Przemysław Dudek, Chief Financial Officer at Cloudica. 

Which factors do IT professionals look at before applying for a job in the sector? This is a hard question, and I will answer like an engineer: It depends! In fact, the demands are really based on which stage the candidates are at in their careers. 

Money makes the world go round 

When discussing such a subject as job satisfaction, it is impossible not to mention salaries. Anyone with even a vague interest in IT job postings will notice that wages have increased significantly in recent years. 

According to a recent report by Codesubmit, over the last two decades, the average salary of some IT specialists increased by around a third. This might not seem much, but today, IT specialists (at least in Poland, where we operate) command good salaries. 
 

 
 
2001 ($) 2011 ($) INCREASE ($) % CHANGE 
Computer Software Engineers – Systems Software 74,490 100,420 25,930 +35% 
Computer and Information Scientists 76,970 103,160 26,190 +34% 
Database Administrators 58,420 77,350 18,930 +32% 
Computer Software Engineers – Applications 72,370 92,080 19,710 +27% 
Computer Programmers 62,890 76,010 13,220 +21% 
Source: Codesubmit  

This, in itself, is both a blessing for people who have taken this career path, but also challenging from a recruitment standpoint. It creates a very competitive market for employers looking to recruit quality staff, where – on the surface – it seems that people will apply for the jobs that pay the best. 

However, this is not necessarily the truth. There are other factors that people consider when they are contemplating a new job. 

Juniors and mid-level professionals are primarily focused on whether they have growth prospects in the new career path. Will the job offer them enough opportunities to develop skills to help them achieve their next step in their profession? 

Tools are essential 

Many professionals in the IT world today also pay a lot of attention to the technologies they will be working with. This is important because the IT experts – working in cyber security, cloud technologies, management, or any other sector – want to ensure that the environment and technologies they will be working with are up to date and, if possible, future-proof.  

This means that if they dedicate a couple of years of their career to developing a particular skill set, they want to know that when they are ready for a change, they will find several opportunities to which they can apply for. 

Work culture makes everything easier 

There is a saying that I often return to: “Choose a job you love, and you’ll never have to work a day in your life.” I have been working in IT for over 15 years and know how important a healthy work environment is for long-term job satisfaction. 

In recent years, IT specialists have been paying more attention to the flexibility of the employer in the context of working fully remotely or at least in a hybrid format. Today’s tools, such as those offered by the Microsoft 365 suite, offer full freedom to work remotely. Employees save on commuting time, and some appreciate working from home. It allows them to focus better and also be close to their private affairs. The Covid pandemic has further accelerated the transition to remote working. 

It is also worth considering the openness and transparency of future employers. Smaller companies and startups are comparatively more open to the suggestions of new employees and adapt to the requirements of their teams. Transparency on both sides is very important in this context.   

Professionals at senior level often want to be assured from the very beginning of their duties and the technologies with which they will work. Unfortunately, not every company delivers what they promised during the recruitment phase, and eventually, staff may be tasked with responsibilities that they are uncomfortable with. This is a big mistake for a potential employer, and it is important to remain transparent in order to prevent unpleasant disappointments – for both sides. 

IT professionals value workplaces that are open-minded, dynamic, and relaxed. Long gone are the days when the “boss breathing down your neck” was acceptable. The modern candidate expects to be appreciated as a self-starter with little-to-no micromanagement. 

Cloudica: shining through the clouds 

This is the kind of workplace we implemented at Cloudica. 

Not only do we offer all our staff weeks of paid leave, free medical insurance, and gym memberships – which have become in recent years – but also a family-like atmosphere where everyone has a voice.  

The relatively small size of the team means that no member is allowed to “get lost in the crowd” and we make it a point to listen to everyone’s opinion. 
 
If you would like to check out our open positions, send me an email at przemyslaw.dudek@cloudicagroup.com. 

Przemysław Dudek is a co-founder and CFO of Cloudica, a cloud-solutions and cybersecurity company. 

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