When government agencies need the flexibility to scale their teams to support their IT needs, the primary obstacle is finding the right partner. The IT Talent market is tight and flooded with new options everyday, which can make the process overwhelming. The end goal is finding not just any vendor but a true partner.
First - Evaluate Your Needs
When deciding to outsource your IT work momentarily or for a longer period, how do you define what will truly make a difference in your talent gap? Every agency has unique needs - from technical skills, workplace culture, domain, the volume of resources needed. Prioritizing what is important to you will help identify what characteristics to look for in your IT Staffing partner. Some questions to ask internally that can drive the right partner selection are:
- Do we have resources qualified and available to conduct in-depth technical interviews with proposed candidates? A staffing partner with an intense vetting process that stands behind the quality of their candidates might serve us better.
- Do we have the time to bring new vendors up to speed on what we are looking for? A partner committed to investing the time it takes to gain a detailed understanding of our workplace culture, expectations, and needs beyond what is written in an individual job description would be hugely beneficial.
- Are we intimately familiar with the ever-changing IT job market? A partner that we can trust to give honest insight into market trends for new and emerging technologies and guide us on positions we may be able to cut costs on is what we need.
- Do we have the staff to sort through and evaluate dozens of resumes for each position we need to be filled? Limiting staffing partners to a small group of trusted vendors versus the open market might be the optimal option.
Second – Identify What You Value in A Partner
Finding a partner with experience providing IT Talent is key - System Integrators sometimes think they can dip their feet in providing resources but managing individual resources versus large projects requires a completely different mindset. An ideal staffing partner would have these key attributes:
- Domain Expertise: Working with government agencies is very different from a commercial entity. Ideally, you will identify a partner with public sector experience and domain expertise aligning with your agencies' mission. This is essential, as a partner will have a difficult time confidently providing an SME in any area, such as Medicaid Policy, without having some experience in that domain as a company.
- Staffing Expertise: Look for a partner with a lengthy track record of successfully providing quality IT Talent. A vendor that can provide verifiable experience and client references to support their reputation is key. Ideally, your partner would have experience providing experts in a similar model to what you are looking for. A vendor that only has experience working through an MSP, may not have the internal systems in place to support a client directly.
- Well Established Processes: A partner with well-established processes guiding the delivery of talents will be more likely to be reliable and efficient. The longer the track record, the more time a company has continuously improved and adjusted these processes.
- Flexible Partner: Every agency has different needs – from budget to technology to urgency. A partner that can adapt to these needs will quickly become your "go-to" sourcing partner.
- Capacity to Scale: The ability to scale up and down as needed is crucial. COVID has shown government leaders how critical it is to maintain flexibility during uncertain times. A good talent provider maintains a healthy pipeline of candidates supported by a large employee base that can be quickly deployed, allowing for a fast reaction when urgent staffing needs arise. On the flip side, the ability to support the workforce when agencies are scaling back, as we saw when COVID first hit, allows vendors to avoid layoffs and be prepared for when agencies are ready to get back to work on critical projects improving employee engagement and client satisfaction.
- Future-ready talent: Look for a partner that offers attractive incentives to its employees- A company comprised of resources that will bring not only technical expertise to your project but passion and innovation that care about making a difference in our communities!
Finding the right partner will help you meet your objectives without compromising on quality or budget. Now that you have a list of requirements, where should you start?
GCOM's OnDemand practice has the right mix of experience and domain expertise with candidates available- OnDemand. GCOM's IT Staff Augmentation services have helped state and local government technology organizations address their talent gaps for over 15 years and counting. GCOM relies on process repeatability - almost every step of our candidate vetting process has been automated to increase efficiency and accuracy in support of our overall goal - quality over quantity. GCOM combines the scale to support large complex projects with the agility and accessibility of a smaller provider. Our capabilities give government agencies a flexible alternative when looking for a staffing partner to address their technology challenges.