Recruiting Insights


High-growth talent leaders share what’s driving success in technical hiring at the 2023 IHR Awards

Gordie Hanrahan image

Gordie Hanrahan

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Last week the Karat team had the privilege of meeting with the finalist for the In-House Recruitment’s High-Growth Company Award. We sat down with some of the best leaders in the business and discussed how they’re tackling the opportunities and challenges of hiring in 2023.

IHR Awards card

Hiring collaborative problem solvers

One finalist who has seen quite a bit of success this year was Hayley Broomfield, Global Talent Acquisition and Operations Manager at Tripledot Studios. Broomfield and team are currently hiring software engineers in Barcelona, Warsaw, Jakarta, and Melbourne. Recognized as the fastest growing company in Europe by Financial Times this past spring, Broomfield credits her team’s success to partnering with technical leaders to improve the candidate experience throughout the hiring process.

Specific areas of focus for Broomfield include increasing the speed of making hires while adopting a holistic approach to interviewing and assessing technical skills. Tripledot’s focus on speed mirrors one of the defining tech hiring trends of 2023 that saw top-performing tech leaders turning to structured interviewing to accelerate their interview process. 

“We hope that our updated approaches allow us to focus on hiring top talent that has high growth potential as well as talent that is aligned with our values and guiding principles,” said Broomfield.  “Our ability to systemize our new processes and use a data-driven approach will allow us to make better decisions and provide more valuable feedback.”

Broomfield highlighted problem-solving, adaptability, and collaboration as core skills they look for in hiring software engineers. Those skills are paramount to clearing Tripledot’s hiring bar and successfully navigating the constantly changing world of technology. 

This echoes what we’ve heard from other top engineering leaders like David Lau, VP of software engineering at Tesla, who has shared that the strongest engineers are the ones who demonstrate advanced problem-solving abilities in addition to core foundational engineering skills. According to Lau, “Instead of checking boxes in a list of specific skills such as specific programming languages or specific databases or caching systems, we look for strong engineering fundamentals that equip a candidate to face entire classes of problems that they’ve never seen before.”

Assessing skills at speed

Olga Power, Global Director of Talent Acquisition at Just Eat Takeaway, also shared the importance of elevating her company’s skills hiring approach to attract diverse talent around the world. With open roles across London, Amsterdam, Berlin, and Winnipeg, Power noted that the enhancement of tools, technologies, and AI can all help bring technical hiring to the next level and create a lot more efficiencies for our tech hiring teams, enabling them to become more proficient and successful. 

“We look at necessary hard skills to be able to do the job (software dev, testing, debugging, programming, coding etc.) but more than ever we focus on soft skills – communication, social and interpersonal abilities, as well as culture fit and how we can meet career aspirations and provide the best learning platform, being a tech company,” added Power. 

Targeting top tech talent

For organizations undergoing digital transformation like the transportation and financial sectors, attracting talent from outside the industry is a huge priority. 

Paul Sumner, head of recruitment for IHR High-Growth Award finalist, National Express LTD, noted that they are having the most success based on their strong employer brand and reputation in the architecture space. For technical roles in the UK, they are focused on bringing in new talent from outside their industry and especially looking to build out their tech leadership and web developer roles. 

Starling Bank was another finalist focused on UK hiring with a broad talent mandate to recruit across all areas of the business.

And the IHR award goes to…

In the end, the global footprint and skills-based approach won the night. Congratulations to Olga and the Just Eat team for their well-deserved recognition as the top high-growth hiring organization, and to the rest of the award nominees!

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