- Tech Republic highlights how IBM is filling technology jobs by maintaining a pipeline of talent that's coming from non-traditional backgrounds, such as military and vocational schools. Emerging areas like cloud apps, cognitive computing, cyber-security and digital design (what they call "New Collar jobs"), do not require four-year degrees in computer science.
- Currently, some 10-15% of IBM's new hires come from alternative markets like fast food, creative writing, music and others, says Kelli Jordan, IBM's talent leader for New Collar Initiatives. IBM is increasing it's outreach and partnerships with more than 70 colleges and universities, as well as trade schools and coding bootcamps.
- Many companies are realizing that they have opportunities to hire talent in much the same way. Angela Hanks, associate director of workforce development policy at the Center for American Progress, told Tech Republic that the technology market continues to struggle with defining with accuracy how wide the gaps are, because companies may not be making enough effort to recruit women and minorities.
As more giants of the technology industry connect with candidates using alternative methods, it is expected that more jobs will be filled with quality candidates who have many of the right skills but just need a touch more training. Such programs both fill the talent pipeline and provide opportunities to employees who could be displaced by digitization in other areas.
Cybersecurity careers and those that are involved in machine learning are topping the list of those that will require dedicated talent. To overcome shortages, recruiters need to loosen up on the job requirements that may be too narrow-minded to serve their company growth objectives. There are many capable men and women from military backgrounds and other career paths where they've been displaced through industry changes but who are suitable for IT careers.
Allowing for people of more varied backgrounds to obtain tech jobs could also help the tech industry overcome its major diversity problem. These days, diverse hiring is a business imperative that can both ease skill gaps and better engage employees overall.