How to attract talent to digital, data and technology roles

We are sharing some solutions and ideas to tackle the challenges that many organisations across the public sector are facing, in the current jobs market, to attract talented people to digital, data and technology (DDaT) roles

24 November 2022

We have been working with our talent solutions partner SyncD and our people and wellbeing lead Sarah Carter. They have developed a tried and tested recruitment strategy that is both inclusive and successful; having hired 17 permanent members of staff in 5 months.  

This is the first blog post in our Attract, Recruit, Retain series. The series aims to tackle the public sector crisis in attracting, recruiting and retaining staff within digital, data and technology roles. 

We are also publishing recruitment templates and tools that you can use to put some of our solutions and ideas into practice. 

Your target audience  

An important starting point for any recruitment campaign is ensuring that you understand your target audience and how they will receive your advert. 

You can do this by talking about the role with members of staff who are already working within the profession you’re looking to hire. 

You can also use LinkedIn Talent Insights. This will give you inside knowledge of market trends. For example, if there is substantial attrition (that is, a lot of people leaving) within one company or organisation you will be able to see this with LinkedIn Talent Insights. You can use this knowledge to target workers from this organisation.  

High-calibre candidates will be inundated with messages from recruiters. It is therefore important that your message has a purpose and that the role you are advertising is relevant to their skills. 

Approaching a potential candidate 

When sending a message to a potential candidate, you should start by: 

You should tailor each message, but here is essential information which you should include: 

Passive candidates 

It’s important to engage with passive candidates throughout your recruitment process. 

A passive candidate can be defined as someone who is: 

A recent LinkedIn survey has shown how passive candidates are as much as 75% of the available market.  

Your advertising strategy is key to attracting passive candidates. Your strategy could include: 

If you have developed a strong network through your social media presence and an engaging website, then this should also help to attract passive candidates and keep them connected with your recruitment activity. 

Recruiting on social media  

In a turbulent job market, candidates must buy into your company’s vision.  

Since the COVID-19 pandemic, people are not only taking new roles just to increase their salary or progress their careers. People are also looking for organisations that are actively trying to make a positive impact. 

Working in the open 

You can often create intrigue by: 

This will help drive interest in your vacant roles. 

A screenshot of a post by the Centre for Digital Public Services, sharing a blog on LinkedIn. 
A screenshot of a post by the Centre for Digital Public Services, sharing a blog on LinkedIn. 

Social media best practice 

These are tips to increase engagement and reach on social media: 

An example of an English Twitter post which follows the social media best practice.  
An example of a Welsh Twitter post which follows the social media best practice. 

Increasing diversity with social media groups 

Social media networks or groups are often overlooked as useful tools. However, they are a cost-effective and quick approach that can be crucial when advertising your role to more diverse communities. 

At CDPS, we post all our social media bilingually. This encourages interaction and community outreach within Welsh talent pools. 

It’s also important to engage with LGBTQI+ and Contendiverse groups on Slack, LinkedIn or even Instagram and TikTok. Many members will be passive candidates who aren’t signing up for job boards. Meeting them on platforms that they will already be using is a way of reaching out.  

This engagement shouldn’t begin and end with a link to your job post. It should be a conscious, ongoing effort to work with and attract group members. You should also be honest about your progression on equality diversity and inclusion rather than take a copy-and-paste approach to the topic.  

Here is a list of Slack groups you may want to engage with if you work in tech

An example LinkedIn job post from a recent CDPS recruitment campaign.
An example LinkedIn job post from a recent CDPS recruitment campaign. 

Impress with your website 

Your company’s website could be a candidate’s first impression of the business. It should clearly show your company’s goals as well as show example projects that excite people.  

A recruitment page on a website should always be engaging for all candidates regardless of whether a company is actively recruiting. At CDPS, we’re currently changing our recruitment page to make this happen. 

Inclusive job descriptions 

In an inclusive job advert, you should: 

Example inclusivity statement 

Please keep reading 

 Research shows that, while men apply for jobs where they meet 60% of the criteria, women and other marginalised people tend only to apply when they check every box.  

So, if you think you have what it takes, but don’t necessarily meet every single point on the job description, please still get in touch. We’d love to have a chat and see if you’d be a good fit.    

We are passionate about creating a diverse workforce and positively encourage applications from under-represented communities. We embrace equality of opportunity irrespective of disability, neurodivergence, ethnic origin, colour, nationality, gender and gender presentation, marital status, sexual orientation, culture or religion. 

Watch the webinar

Coming up

Follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn to hear about the next webinar in the Attract, Recruit, Retain series.  

You can use these recruitment tools and templates to put some of our suggested solutions into practice. 

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