6 Recruitment and Retention Challenges in the British Columbia IT Industry + Recruitment Strategies

The number of Information Technology talents in British Columbia is short of the desks needed to be filled by its IT Companies. Leaders are on the same page about the pain points in attracting and retaining tech talent. Here are the shared recruitment and retention challenges in the British Columbia IT Industry. And some recruitment strategies to improve the situation.

Recruitment and Retention Challenges

Brain Drain

British Columbia has a strong reputation for producing exceptional talent, but people leave to work elsewhere in Canada, the United States, or in other countries. The Covid situation has expanded this dilemma as people who still live in BC now work for companies outside the territory. 

Competitive Pay and Purchasing Power

The BC is often pitched as a great place to find cheap talent. However, the increase in demand for talent leads to upward pressure on wages. Multinationals can pay more, so it’s challenging to remain competitive for start-ups and scale-ups. 

Moreover, remote employees who used to live in Vancouver are setting their sights on BC as an affordable city. These movements increase the purchasing power and prices of goods and services in BC.

Evolving Nature of Work

Downtime during the pandemic has increased the appreciation for life among workers. Moms and dads enjoy spending more time with children, engaging in home projects, exercising, and gardening. They are not likely to give it up again. However, the BC business climate wasn’t built to accommodate flexibility.

Lack of Awareness

Tech companies in British Columbia are more laid back than their outside counterparts. As a result, they are unaware of the lucrative offerings that await software engineers and programmers elsewhere.

On the other hand, companies in Ontario and the US are becoming better at marketing themselves and creating a brand not just for customers but for employees as well. They have created reputations for massiveness and work-life balance that attract top talent. 

Getting to Scale

British Columbia companies lack the modern structure of an interwoven organization where initiatives can come from anywhere, and mentorship and employee development becomes a shared responsibility among managers from different departments.

Lack of Diversity

The local government has invested $15 million to train and develop women, BIPOC individuals, and persons with disabilities in IT. More can be done to nurture a diverse talent pool.

Recruitment Strategies

Faced with these challenges, here are some recruitment strategies.

•Consider Remote or Hybrid Work – Remote or hybrid work reduces employee stress. When done right, it need not reduce productivity. It also cuts costs on real estate and electricity costs. Moreover, remote work opens more possibilities for British Columbian companies to find talent somewhere else.

•Relying on Immigration to Fill in the Gap – Employers are looking internationally. Immigrants fill nearly one in three job vacancies in BC tech companies. Global talent programs are working very well.

•Working with Universities – Many employers build relationships with students early and develop them to be future employees.