“New Collar” Jobs Dominate Tech Hiring

by Riia O’Donnell 

In tech recruiting the new watchwords are skills rather than credentials when it comes to hiring. A four-year degree is no more a guarantee of a job, even from the best schools, as it is a guarantee of success. More and more companies are finding, in tech recruitment and beyond, that skills are more important than credentials when it comes to hiring candidates who can hit the ground running, and who have a higher chance of success.

Skills Gap Widens

With the potential for 1 million unfilled programming jobs predicted in the US alone by 2020, the push to find candidates will become even more competitive. IBM recently announced it will be sourcing applicants from alternative educational avenues, including coding programs and even high school partnerships. They are pushing to add 6,000 employees by the end of 2017. To date, about 15% of their US hires do not hold a 4 year degree. Their preference: candidates who have hands-on experience and who seek ongoing learning opportunities for their industry and beyond.

Big Blue isn’t the only company that recognizes the education gap in tech hiring. Intel is also looking for candidates with unconventional resumes. Bootcamps that are popping up all over the country, are looking to partner with many of the larger companies to provide an ongoing talent stream.

Apple founder Steve Wozniak is climbing aboard the alternative educational track. Woz U, an Arizona based program will start online and expand to over 30 cities in the US. They hope to shake up higher education for the tech industry. The institute is designed to help close the skills gap so high paying jobs in the industry will be filled across the country.

Schools Expand

And if you think the trend may not take hold, WeWork, the mega-office sharing company with locations in over 20 countries and a value of $20 billion, has recently purchased New York’s Flatiron school. Their coding education platform with on and offline classes or tech careers was launched in 2012 and has earned over $14 million. WeWork plans to expand Flatiron’s reach around the world with classes in all its locations.

While not college graduates, these workers are definitely not blue-collar –hence the term “new collar.” A new way of looking for talent that will impact employers large and small. The trend away from 4 year degrees, even for the most prestigious of employers and from the most prestigious of schools is good news for business. While the competition had been fierce for top grads every year, the expansion to skills-based hiring means more talent from which to choose. For employees, the ability to be hired on your ability, rather than your connections or pedigree is great news as well.

We’ve Been Waiting

As the skills-based trend continues, the onus then goes to employers: without the sheepskin, how do you know they can do the work? That’s where Rankdone fills the bill. We’ve known all along a diploma doesn’t tell the whole story: prescreening candidates for their skill set is the best way to determine if they can do the work, and if they’ll be a successful hire. As the marketplace finally catches up, we’re here, helping you make the best hires you can. Find out how to enhance your skills-based hiring with Rankdone today.

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