Microsoft announced they are working to accelerate a "skills-based labor market" and immediately I wondered what companies have been hiring for previously, if not for skills. I'm sure those of you who have applied for a job again and again, only to be rejected or ignored, have wondered the same thing.
The New York Times reporting of the subject clarifies that in this 'new' way of looking at job applicants, "skills can be emphasized over traditional hiring filters like college degrees, work history and personal references." From a recruiting perspective, I still believe in personal references because hearing first-hand from someone who has witnessed or benefited from your skills is extremely valuable when evaluating a candidate.
It's wonderful that companies are beginning to embrace the idea that applicants might actually have a skill they'd like to hire them for. I thank schools like Sabio and General Assembly for training so many intelligent, fast-learners that they have begun to flood the market with enough candidates who cannot be ignored. These schools provide professionals with tech skills that are in high demand, regardless of whether they have a college degree and with more than 26,000 open I.T. jobs in the Los Angeles labor market, it's about time.
Los Angeles isn't alone. Atlanta has 14,000 open I.T. jobs and even in Australia and the U.K., the shortage of tech skills has sparked a change in recruitment practices, with the emphasis being placed on speed. However, working faster in an already flawed environment will simply hasten bad hiring. The recruiting and hiring practices of many companies should be burned to the ground and rebuilt so getting employers to hire for skill instead of pedigree is an excellent first step.
Working as a recruiter while infusing diversity into hiring pipelines, I was acutely aware of the frustration women and professionals of color felt as they struggled to get hired into the 'good' jobs. If they were low paid, temporary or less desirable jobs, the obstacles suddenly melted away so I worked very hard to advocate for skills to take precedence over the school the candidate attended. It just makes sense. Which is why I built a new recruiting platform, working with developers from Sabio, that doesn't require a resume. It does require a referral or recommendation as confirmation of your skills.
I believe that when professionals have the opportunity to highlight their skills, they get hired. Period. And it seems corporate America is finally beginning to catch on. If you agree with this type of hiring simplicity and would like to try the Rework Work platform, click here and we'll add you to the beta launch.
#CodingInClass #tech #womenintech #diversity