Finding, hiring, and retaining talent with skills using data and technology is a massive challenge in government. The question is constant: how do you find the people you need to use your data effectively, or to leverage new technology in government? We at GovEx recently released Cultivating Talent, a resource geared at helping answer that question. Here are three tips from that resource to get you started.
1. Post your job listing off the beaten path. If you’re stuck in the rut of posting your open positions on civic job boards, Glassdoor, Indeed, and the like, try posting on Stack Overflow, Reddit, Twitter, and other social media platforms. This is particularly true if you’re looking for technologists, who will look for new work on tech-oriented sites first.
2. Work those civic tech networks. Is there an organization in your city that hacks on civic technology challenges? Code for America brigades are a great place to start but definitely not your only option — hacker groups and meetups are good places to look, too. These (usually) volunteer groups are often rife with people who want to make their communities a better place, and might be looking for a way to do so professionally.
3. Offer new kinds of benefits. As a government organization, it might be a stretch for you to offer a new hire flexible vacation time and brand-new equipment, two things that are now standard in Silicon Valley hiring practices. But can you offer training opportunities within your government, chances to speak at conferences, or access to coveted data sets? Think about the sorts of perks you can offer a new hire that aren’t the current norm. And if you can offer remote work benefits or flexible hours, so much the better.