“Talent attracts talent. The best want to be among their peers.”
John Calipari, American basketball coach and author of ‘Success is the Only Option’

94% of Australian IT professionals would prefer to work with a smaller team of highly skilled individuals than a larger team of moderately skilled individuals.

That’s according to a recent survey, conducted by Contino, capturing the views of almost 300 IT professionals from a range of backgrounds and industries across Australia.

The Voice of Talent 2019 report highlights the opportunity to work with a highly talented team as an important consideration when searching for a new role. The results also indicate that the struggle for talent remains consistent across the board with 70% of respondents admitting that it is either difficult, very difficult or extremely difficult to attract great talent.

The Power of Referrals

Throughout my career in the talent industry, I have interviewed thousands of candidates and hired hundreds. In my experience, one of the most effective ways to recruit developers is via referrals. Candidates will often follow a respected former colleague to their new organisation for the opportunity to work with them again. In fact, I have seen a whole team of people follow their manager to a new organisation.

The success of any organisation is built around its people; if you hire superstars, they will become a magnet for attracting talent.

Insights on Attracting and Retaining Australian Tech Talent

Companies across Australia are in a battle to hire and retain the best IT talent in the market.

Our report outlines the responses from 300 IT professionals across Australia to questions designed to help industry leaders understand tech talent at a deeper level.


Set the Bar High

The competition for top talent is aggressive. Skilled engineers are constantly being approached by recruiters on LinkedIn, so for employers looking to attract talent, reputation is critical. When an organisation is known for hiring the best of the best, talented engineers are naturally drawn to them because they too want to be part of this elite group. An organisation that settles for mediocrity will tarnish its own reputation as word travels like wildfire in the engineering communities. So set the bar high when bringing on new people, as talent does attract talent.

How to Retain Your Talent

Once you have the talent, the next biggest challenge is retaining it.

The most important factor in retaining talent, according to the survey, is having exciting projects with modern tech strategies. In fact, 89% say that working with a modern tech stack is either very important or extremely important when looking for a new role. Interestingly, regular salary reviews was ranked as the least important factor.

Though salary considerations are important, highly skilled talent is more interested in new challenges and learning new skills.

Talented IT professionals recognise that their careers are tied to the constant onslaught of technological change. Unsurprisingly then, 97% admitted that it was extremely important or very important to upskill themselves in preparation for the future of technology while 86% expected their industry to change in the next five years. The lesson for organisations is that they also need to be prepared to change to remain attractive to tomorrow’s tech talent.



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Gerhard Schweinitz

Head of Talent (APAC)

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