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In search of an IT unicorn? Perhaps you should first take a close look at your software

Finding the right talent can be a challenge, but have you considered why you’re specifically seeking that one specialized profile? A few correct software choices can suddenly make the talent pool available to you a lot bigger.

There are two main software-related areas that impact on which people you can hire. On the one hand, there is the level of specialisation that you need: generalists are more numerous than specialists. On the other hand, some specialists are rarer than others. Maintaining your homemade CRM system calls for niche knowledge that only few people have, whereas certified people for SAP or Salesforce are not really hard to find.

Consolidating, not juggling

First look at what you already have. How does your IT environment run? How many security solutions do you have? Who monitors all the applications? What is in the cloud and what runs locally? And how do you keep track of everything? All too often, your IT people have to spend the whole day juggling with dashboards and notifications just to keep everything in the air. Consolidation and simplicity really offer a solution here.

It doesn’t help if your local and cloud environments are totally different, for instance. A lot of parties want to be the glue between your environments. You can sign up for a public cloud provider, go for an open-source platform as a basis or opt for one party who offers a uniform layer. That can be expensive, but the advantage is that your entire IT environment becomes a single whole. Suddenly you can manage it from a far simpler central environment, in which you can train generalists.

Increase automation where you can. It’s such a waste when your IT genius spends the whole day rolling out configurations or updating databases. There are solutions to this.

The same applies as regards security. Dozens of solutions, each with their own dashboard, are of little benefit. The current consolidation trend does not come from nowhere. Team up with one party, who offers a platform that suits the entire security architecture. Ideally you should have an AI option that reduces the flood of notifications to targeted and usable messages and suddenly half your people can do twice the work.

Different processes or different software?

When you have to make an important choice of software or platform, other considerations come into play. You can look for one solution tailored to your company and processes. You may find a niche tool that does everything you want. Great, but how many people are there with expertise in this tool?

It is often better to choose a bigger, more popular solution and adapt your processes a little. That calls for some change management and daring, but it bears fruit in the long term. Far more talents are familiar with big solutions, so you can develop your own IT team that knows the ropes.

The alternative is a solution that is perhaps more suitable, but for which you quite simply can’t find anyone who can manage it in house. In this case, external consultants are the only way forward. If you can rethink your processes in line with more popular solutions, you don’t have to rely on outside help. Organisations like this can write job adverts tailored to a bigger talent pool. Nevertheless, an IT specialist tailored to your own processes and software, on your own payroll, is often a more attractive option in the long term.

Dealing with reality

We live in a world in which not enough people are available for very IT position to cater for every company. You can choose to ignore that or open up the portfolio in an attempt to attract the available profiles anyway. In some scenarios, that may be the only solution.

However, organisations that also dare to look at processes and software in house ultimately do themselves a favour. Streamline and automate what you can so that your IT people have time to create added value. Adapt processes to popular solutions where possible. That way, you can manage and maintain your software in house with your own people, who are findable.

Do you need a scarce profile, anyway? Or are you looking for motivated generalists to bolster your IT team? CHRLY is happy to help.