Why Now Is The Perfect Time To Connect With Data & Analytics Professionals

Ross Whatling our consultant managing the role
Posting date: 4/9/2020 9:52 AM
Covid-19 has presented a challenge for recruiting teams and businesses across the globe. Many businesses have adjusted to remote working in order to help stop the spread and eliminate the need for their employees  to travel to the office. As businesses continue to hire, they are using technology to move from a traditional face to face process to video interviews. 

The good news for companies who are on the hunt for top talent, however, is that now is a prime time to continue speaking and networking with Data & Analytics professionals who could be a great addition to their business. Here’s why:

AN EXCESS OF FREE TIME


Now that people are working from home, they’re saving time on commuting, and aren’t working in close proximity with their co-workers or boss so they can make time to speak. Any previous struggles with arranging times to speak because of clashing schedules are now significantly reduced and there is now plenty of time to book in a call. 

Isolation is a prime time to hold a conversation with potential future employees as it’s highly doubtful anything is going to pop up last minute and interrupt your meeting. Plus people are more keen than ever to keep connected to others and engage with conversation.  

It’s the perfect opportunity to softly sell your company and what is on offer, longer term company visions, discuss trends in the market, plans on growing and where the best Data & Analytics talent around can fit into this. 

WE’RE ALL TECH READY


With the world now set up for remote working, this could be a great time to book in virtual coffee meetings over the likes of Zoom, Google Hangout or Skype. Adjusting from face to face meetings to virtual ones, means there is no need to cancel meetings and if anything means networking with talent is easier. There are plenty of opportunities to ‘meet’ with talent and build relationships in ways that may have been harder to arrange when trying to find a physical time and place. 

This also means that onboard remotely is a very achievable reality. Virtual meetings with new starters offer an easy way to stay connected and build a relationship before they join the business. For example, a candidate who accepted a job offer in February but now may not start until August could be feeling uncertain as to whether there is still a job on offer. By arranging virtual meetings with people who are still set you join the company you’ll be able to stay in contact,. keep them engaged with your brand, and actually have longer to build a pre-onboarding relationship with them than you would’ve done.

CANDIDATES ARE READY TO GO


The best talent doesn’t wait around for long and, if projects have been postponed, they’ll be keen to keep developing their skillset  Specialist and highly skilled candidates who may not have been looking for new opportunities are now actively searching and more than willing to network with hiring managers. 

Even if you’re not imminently hiring, now is a good time to begin initiating longer term conversations with professionals and creating a pool of talented candidates who are engaged with the business. Then, by the time you are ready, there will be a talent pool to begin interviewing with rather than starting from scratch. Naturally, some candidates may no longer be on the market, but if they’ve been left with a positive impression, there’s no harm staying in touch until the right time does come along. 

If you’re looking to connect with top Data & Analytics talent or businesses, we can help. Get in touch to hear about our network of thousands of top Data professionals, or take a look at our latest opportunities here

Related blog & news

With over 10 years experience working solely in the Data & Analytics sector our consultants are able to offer detailed insights into the industry.

Visit our Blogs & News portal or check out the related posts below.

Weekly News Digest - 11th-15th Jan 2021

This is Harnham’s weekly news digest, the place to come for a quick breakdown of the week’s top news stories from the world of data and analytics. KDNuggets: 20 core Data Science concepts for beginners The field of Data Science is one that continuously evolves. For Data Scientists, this means constantly learning and perfecting new skills, keeping up to date with crucial trends and filling knowledge gaps.  However, there are a core set of concepts that all Data Scientists will need to understand throughout their career, especially at the start. From Data Wrangling to Data Imputation, Reinforcement Learning to Evaluation Metrics, KDNuggets outlines 20 of the key basics needed.  A great article if you’re just starting out and want to grasp the essentials or, if you’re a bit further up the ladder and would appreciate a quick refresh.  Read more here.  FinExtra: 15 DevOps trends to watch in 2021 As a direct response to the COVID-19 pandemic, there is no doubt that DevOps has come on leaps and bounds in the past year alone. FinExtra hears from a wide range of specialists within the sector, all of whom give their opinion on what 2021 holds for DevOps.  A few examples include: Nirav Chotai, Senior DevOps Engineer at Rakuten: “DataOps will definitely boom in 2021, and COVID might play a role in it. Due to COVID and WFH situation, consumption of digital content is skyrocket high which demands a new level of automation for self-scaling and self-healing systems to meet the growth and demand.” DevOps Architect at JFrog: “The "Sec'' part of DevSecOps will become more and more an integral part of the Software Development Lifecycle. A real security "shift left" approach will be the new norm.” CTO at International Technology Ventures: “Chaos Engineering will become an increasingly more important (and common) consideration in the DevOps planning discussions in more organizations.” Read the full article here.  Towards Data Science: 3 Simple Questions to Hone Python Skills for Beginners in 2021 Python is one of the most frequently used data languages within Data Science but for a new starter in the industry, it can be incredibly daunting. Leihua Yea, a PHD researcher at the University of California in Machine Learning and Data Science knows all too well how stressful can be to learn. He says: “Once, I struggled to figure out an easy level question on Leetcode and made no progress for hours!” In this piece for Towards Data Science, Yea gives junior Data Scientists three top pieces of advice to help master the basics of Python and level-up their skills. Find out what that advice is here.  ITWire: Enhancing customer experiences through better data management From the start of last year, businesses around the globe were pushed into a remote and digital way of working. This shift undoubtedly accelerated the use of the use of digital and data to keep their services as efficient and effective as possible.  Derak Cowan of Cohesity, the Information Technology company, talks with ITWire about the importance of the continued use of digital transformation and data post-pandemic, even after restrictions are relaxed and we move away from this overtly virtual world.  He says: “Business transformation is more than just a short-term tactic of buying software. If you want your business to thrive in the post-COVID age, it will need to place digital transformation at the heart of its business strategy and identify and overcome the roadblocks.” Read more about long-term digital transformation for your business here.  We've loved seeing all the news from Data and Analytics in the past week, it’s a market full of exciting and dynamic opportunities. To learn more about our work in this space, get in touch with us at info@harnham.com.

Seven Ways To Minimise Unconscious Bias In Your Recruitment Process

When it comes to the recruitment process, organisations will often take different approaches to securing their next hire. Yet, one challenge that remains the same across the board is the ubiquitous nature of unconscious bias. This typically means that individuals will favour those that look or think similarly to themselves. Not only is the potential for prejudice to arise an alarming issue here, but the impacts of unconscious bias can also have a detrimental effect on the hiring process, in both the short and long term. You could face missing out on a highly skilled and qualified candidate, as well as damaging opportunities for improving the diversity of the business. In order to address unconscious bias, organisations really need to take a moment to reflect and challenge their perceptions on the positive and the negative implications. Our own research demonstrates the opportunities of bolstering not only a diverse team in Data and Analytics, but an inclusive one too. Here are some core ways in which organisations can challenge and adapt their processes: Check your job descriptions It’s one of the simplest changes to make, but far too often overlooked. Many of us will use gender coded language without even realising it. It is therefore critical that all job descriptions are neutral, and that descriptive language is removed. Masculine-coded words such as ‘confident’ and ‘guru’ and feminine-coded words such as ‘understanding’ and ‘modest’ can really discourage individuals from applying for positions. Make use of panel-based interviews Over the past year, we’ve all become accustomed to a much more virtual way of working, which includes the recruitment process.  Our reliance on technology now plays an integral role in how we interview, test and hire candidates. When interviewing candidates, organisations should involve a range of different people (even if this is just in an observational role), as they may challenge your preconceptions and provide an alternative viewpoint. Instead of only involving the CEO and Managing Director, for example, make sure you have individuals from other departments and areas within the team sitting in too. Interviews should instead focus on skills-based tasks  In order to minimise the unconscious bias that permeates the recruitment process across industries, interviews need to focus on skills-based tasks. Importantly, hiring managers should be assessing the suitability for a role, so practical, skills-focused tasks are important in establishing this. Appoint an external inclusion agency If you’re stuck for where to start when it comes to improving the ways in which you plan and execute your hiring strategies, it could be worthwhile to seek support from an external agency or individual that specialises in inclusion. Their insights, experiences and knowledge will be able to support an organisation to ensure that their hiring process minimises the impacts of unconscious bias. Facilitating discussions and training In the same way that liaising with external experts can support an organisation, so to can introducing training sessions. Stamping out unconscious bias requires us all to challenge our ways of thinking to create an inclusive culture for all. Regardless of whether this is during the recruitment process, through onboarding or once an individual is working within the business, facilitating discussions and training can help. It should be noted though, that generalised training to minimise unconscious bias training isn’t always effective, so this should be assessed and planned according to relevant objectives and goals. Advertise roles through different channels To ensure that you are reaching a diverse pool of talent, hiring managers should ensure that positions are advertised across a range of different platforms. It may be the case that highly skilled professionals from different backgrounds do not all source new positions through the same websites or streams. Improving this access will ensure that you are not selecting candidates from the same pool of talent.  Set specific diversity and inclusion goals It’s crucial to remember that taking steps to minimise and remove these biases is just one part of a much bigger challenge that organisations are facing in order to action change. Firms need to assess their long-term diversity and inclusion goals in order to ensure that removing biases is part of an embedded strategy. Internal strategies must be reviewed and assessed in order to ensure that the approach to the recruitment process provides equal and fair access and opportunities for all to thrive. In the Data and Analytics sector, it’s key for leaders to take action to mandate some core strategies to engage and include a diverse team of talent. If you're looking to make your next hire, or are searching role yourself, get in touch with our expert consultants or take a look at our latest Data & Analytics jobs here. 

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