4 Tips for Assessing Foreign IT Professionals

19

September, 2023

4 Tips for Assessing Foreign IT Professionals

topic IT Recruiting visibility1402 views

Hey there fellow tech recruiters, have you been struggling to find skilled IT talent lately? The demand for software engineers, web developers, and data scientists seems to grow every day. At ABC Recruiting Inc., we work with companies around the world to source the best IT professionals, even if that means looking abroad. While hiring foreign talent does come with challenges, if done right, it can be a great way to access a global pool of candidates with the skills you need.

Define Your IT Hiring Needs and Requirements

To find the best IT professionals abroad, first define exactly what skills and experience you need. Ask yourself:

  • Do we need software engineers, web developers or data scientists?
  • What technical expertise and soft skills are must-haves?
  • How senior of a position are we looking to fill?

The more specific you can be about the role and requirements, the better. This will help narrow down the pool of candidates and ensure a good match.

Once you've clarified the specifics, look at relevant job sites and professional networks in your target countries. Many IT pros maintain profiles on services like LinkedIn, AngelList and HackerRank that allow filtering by location, skills, languages and experience level. Scout the top candidates, review their work and see who might be a good fit.

If possible, conduct initial phone or video screens. Speaking with candidates, even briefly, can give you a better sense of their communication skills, enthusiasm and career ambitions. For the most promising, schedule more in-depth interviews.

Ask about their experiences, technical expertise, soft skills, career goals, language abilities and willingness to relocate. Also evaluate their problem-solving skills with a coding challenge or technical test.

With the right approach, you can find amazing IT talent anywhere in the world. Define your needs, search strategically, screen thoughtfully and make the best match for your team. The results will be well worth the effort.

Research Staffing Agencies for IT Professionals

When looking to hire top IT talent from overseas, do your homework on the staffing agencies. Not all are created equal. Look for agencies with a proven track record of recruiting professionals with the technical skills you need.

Check their credentials. See if the agency is certified by the ISO or a similar accrediting body. They should also be licensed and insured to operate in the countries where they recruit.

Research their recruiting methods. The best agencies use multiple channels to find candidates, including employee referrals, social media, job boards, and university outreach. They should have an efficient screening process to evaluate skills, experience, language proficiency, and cultural fit.

Ask about retention rates. High turnover is a red flag. Look for agencies with a track record of placing candidates in long-term roles. They should offer onboarding, relocation, and post-hire support to set new hires up for success.

Get references from clients. Talk to companies that have used the agency before. Ask them about the quality and retention of candidates, responsiveness of the agency, and whether they'd recommend their services.

Finding the right IT talent is challenging enough without having to weed through unqualified candidates. Do your due diligence to find a staffing agency that can deliver the skilled, long-term professionals your company needs. With the right partner, hiring overseas talent can be a great way to build your team.

Conduct in-Depth Interviews and Skills Assessments

When assessing foreign IT professionals, conducting thorough interviews and skills assessments is key.

Interview Them Extensively

Spend ample time interviewing candidates over the phone or via video call. Ask open-ended questions to determine their relevant experience, technical skills, communication abilities, and cultural fit. Some questions to consider:

  • What programming languages and technologies are you most proficient in?
  • How would you go about solving [common IT challenge]?
  • How do you prefer to communicate with colleagues and managers?
  • What are your career goals and how does this position fit into your plans?

Look for candidates who can articulate their experience, share concrete examples of their work, ask thoughtful questions, and whose goals align with the role.

How to conduct effective technical interviews for IT roles 

Evaluate Their Skills

Don’t rely solely on candidates’ claims of proficiency. Assess their skills with a technical challenge like a coding exercise, debug test, or mock scenario they may encounter on the job. See how they think through and solve the problem. For IT roles, skills like logical reasoning, troubleshooting, and communication are as important as technical knowledge.

Conducting comprehensive interviews and skill evaluations, though time-consuming, is the best way to determine if a foreign IT professional has the experience, abilities, and work style to succeed at your organization. Take your time finding the right person for the job. It will be worth the investment.

Verify Backgrounds and References

When hiring foreign IT professionals, verifying their backgrounds and references is crucial.

Contact References

Reach out to the references they provide and ask specific questions about the candidate’s technical skills, work responsibilities, strengths, and weaknesses. Ask open-ended questions to get detailed information. Were they punctual and reliable? How well did they interact with colleagues?

Would the reference hire them again?

Double check that the references seem legitimate. Call the company they worked for to confirm the relationship. Be wary of references who seem hesitant or provide vague answers.

Background Checks

Conducting background checks on foreign candidates can be challenging, but it’s worth the effort. Check if the university they attended is properly accredited. Search for their name along with the name of past employers on search engines like Google, Baidu or Yandex to look for any information that might raise red flags.

See if a third-party background check service has records available for that country. They may be able to verify employment, education, and in some cases even check criminal records. The more information you can gather, the more confident you’ll feel in your hiring decision.
While assessing foreign talent does present some difficulties, don’t be discouraged. With extra verification and an open, curious mindset, you can find highly skilled IT professionals from around the globe. The key is taking the time to thoroughly evaluate each candidate to make the best choice for your team.

Unlocking International IT Talent

So there you have it, four proven tips for assessing foreign IT talent. Finding top tech talent is challenging enough without adding an international component to your search. But with the global shortage of IT skills, looking abroad for candidates is a necessity for many companies. By focusing on soft skills, cultural fit, technical abilities, and verifying credentials, you'll be well on your way to finding amazing foreign candidates to join your team. Tech talent is tech talent, no matter where in the world it comes from. So broaden your search, keep an open and curious mindset, and get ready to be amazed by the skills and innovation these international candidates can bring to your company. The future is global, and talent has no borders. Happy hunting!

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