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What attracts engineers and IT talent in the summer of 2024

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The economy is still trending downward, and according to the Swedish Public Employment Service's forecasts, unemployment will increase until 2025. Despite this, several industries are facing a significant shortage of engineers and IT talent. Keeparo has the solution for how employers can capture this sought-after talent with strategy and data.

At Keeparo, we talk daily with employers from widely varied industries. They all face different types of business goals and challenges, but what unites them is the desire to attract engineers and IT talent. The shortage of IT competence has long been a challenge, and according to Statistics Sweden's estimates, there will be a shortage of 50,000 engineers by 2030.

Keeparo is the Nordic region's largest agency in employer branding, and when we look at our own database, there is no doubt that engineers and IT professionals are among the most sought-after target groups for Swedish employers. 27 percent of all ad views through us are directed at these target groups. The fact that almost one-third of recruitment ad views on social media focus on these areas of expertise speaks volumes about the challenge.

The strength and limitations of the employer offer

More employers than ever have developed employer value propositions (EVP). This is the foundation of a strong employer brand. Previously, the messages alone could go a long way to stand out and create a clear position in the market, but more and more indicates that those days are soon over.

It is no longer enough to just have strong messages. Employers need to understand what truly drives engineers and IT talent — their career preferences, perceptions of employers, and the development opportunities they prioritize — and then communicate how the organization as an employer delivers on this. The challenge is to create an authentic and engaging identity that enables a real and ongoing dialogue with the target group.

The solution is Strategy + Data

By using data and insights from Keeparo's proprietary analysis system, TargetBuilder, employers can not only create targeted campaigns that reach the right people at the right time but also ensure that the right messages are used. To build a long-term relationship with engineers and IT professionals before they actively seek their next career step, employers need to work with strategic communication. Technology has taken great strides in recent years, and we have entirely new ways to address the skills shortage today.

A simple tool and industry standard is the "recruitment funnel" (see image). By dividing the external employer branding work into three steps, the path to more effective recruitment becomes more manageable and clearer. With Keeparo's TargetBuilder, we can combine this method with real-time data from engineers and IT professionals. It has never been easier to get the insights needed to link your employer brand with your business goals.

Let’s take a closer look at the three steps in the recruitment funnel and how, combined with concrete data points, they can be used to improve a recruitment strategy.

Creating awareness for your employer

In the awareness phase, the aim is to reach out and influence as many as possible within the target groups. To measure how effective a message is to advertise on social media, we look at the cost per 1,000 impressions. The cost of different messages will vary based on how much resonance they have with the target audience. If the message is general and many candidates are interested, it will have a lower cost than more specialized messages. With the help of TargetBuilder, we at Keeparo can analyze this type of data in real-time to maximize reach with a limited budget. Just like in real life, things can change quickly. Below, we show which messages are most cost-effective right now.

The most cost-effective messages to Swedish engineers and IT talent in June 2024:

  1. Personal development
  2. Pride
  3. Culture and community

Creating interest for your employer

When candidates are aware of an employer, we move to the next step in the recruitment funnel: the interest phase. Now we want to spark interest among potential candidates, and a good way to measure this is by looking at the percentage of all ad views that result in the person pausing and watching a video. By analyzing which messages have the highest view rates, we can see what type of video content generates the most interest in real-time.

The best messages related to video content for Swedish engineers and IT talent in June 2024:

  1. Culture and community
  2. Social responsibility
  3. Pride


Getting the target group to apply

Strategic employers make sure to keep candidates warm and engaged over a longer period. Recruitment is largely a matter of timing, and to succeed in attracting a challenging target group, employers need to see the bigger picture. When it's time to fill a position, we want the now-warmed target group to click on a job ad or visit the career page. An easy way to measure this step is with Click-Through-Rate (CTR), i.e., the percentage who click on the displayed ad, also known as click frequency.

The messages that generate the most clicks among Swedish engineers and IT talent in June 2024:

  1. Compensation and benefits
  2. Leadership
  3. Pride  

An investment that pays off in the long run

This is what it takes to attract and keep the coveted engineering and IT talent. Employers must be prepared to invest in their employer brand and continuously work to improve and adapt their offer and messages based on the changing needs and expectations of the candidates.

A strong employer brand also creates pride and loyalty among existing employees. A workplace where employees feel valued and engaged contributes to a positive corporate culture and strengthens the organization's competitiveness.

In a time when the competition for engineers and IT talent is tougher than ever, it is the employers who truly understand the target group and work strategically that will stand the strongest. By investing in a long-term and data-driven employer branding strategy, you can not only attract the best engineers and IT professionals but also create a workplace where everyone actually wants to be.

Jesper Hansson

Head of Data & Insight at Keeparo

Want to know more?

Feel free to contact us if you are curious and want to discuss the topic! Get in touch with us at Keeparo.

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