The borders are not only opening up to skilled workers…

By: Ellis Taylor, Head of Partnerships at Real Time

First published at LinkedIn on September 30, 2021

Australia’s IT Talent Shortage

The questions on the lips of every Tech employer right now is “how do we solve our talent shortage?”, and “how can we afford good digital talent?

And the far too common answer seems to be “wait for the borders to open for skilled workers to return.” 

What this doesn’t take into account is the acceleration of cashed-up international companies waiting for the borders to open so they can land and expand in Australia, too. 

Australia has long been a target for international companies because of our technical literacy & new-product up-take rates (we’re viewed as a perfect ‘test-bed’ for products & services), plus the stability of our economy, comparatively weaker dollar, access to capital, proximity to Asia etc. all make Aus. pretty attractive. 

And Covid has only pegged Australia up a few more places in the beauty contest. 

“Despite the border closures, HaymarketHQ is receiving record interest from international tech. companies that are seeking to expand into the Australian market” – Duco van Breemen, CEO of Haymarket HQ (& Sydney Landing Pad).

Which is an amazing thing for the Australian economy, not so much for local employers.

“It’s easy to forget that there is a global skill shortage that is not limited to Australia. Governments across the world are also relaxing their migration policies to attract skilled workers, creating increasingly more competition for Australian employers regardless of border closures” van Breemen added.  

When the borders open to tens of thousands of skilled workers throughout 2022 we will only see a net-net effect for the already suffocating local Talent market for years to come – considering: 

  1. The amount of Capital flowing in to Australian scaleups is at record levels: which funds thousands of new hires, (venture capital firms poured $2.5 billion into start-ups between July 2020 and July 2021)
  2. The ‘Paypal Mafia’ effect, the increase in the number of ex-unicorn / soonicorn tech execs breaking out to start their own ventures (creating more employment opportunities)
  3. Global VCs are aggressively pursuing Australian startups (in the past 6 weeks Canva & Afterpay hit the $55b & $40b+ valuation mark respectively – go figure!)
  4. The accelerating digitalisation of every service due to Covid (not to mention the continual transformation of any already digitised business) is outpacing the creation of digital talent
  5. The Great Resignation (more than 40 per cent of the global workforce are considering leaving their employers – Microsoft) + a lot of the devs we represent are actively being enticed to overseas opportunities in 22’
  6. An expected increase in overseas companies entering the Australian market as they seek new geographies for growth (either organically or through acquisition)

Hiring Solutions

Andrew McFarlane, technology focused M&A Parter at BDO added “higher inbound M&A and investment into Australia is certainly driving increased demand for tech talent along with the sheer volume of digital transformation projects currently occurring across all industries at the moment.” 

So the employer’s problem isn’t going anywhere… and is only going to get worse. 

  • Salaries will continue to rise
  • Average tenure of employment will continue to fall
  • The application rates to (everyones failing) Job Ads will rise, though the percentage of quality applicants will remain low
  • Companies’ investment into their  EVP (Employee Value Proposition) will continue to rise
  • Investment into Recruitment costs will continue to rise

And this is music to the candidates ears, who will continue their life in the driver’s seat.

  • Cherry picking opportunities and practically writing their own employee contracts in terms of flexibility, hours, salary & ESOP
  • Their shift towards long-term contracting vs. permanent positions will continue to rise
  • Candidate’s will continue to switch off or ignore their public profiles (some of our candidates get on average 20 LinkedIn messages from employers/recruiters per day – what would you do?)

This is a complicated situation with myriad angles, however there’s one thing employers can continue investing in that I think is irrefutable. 

Your EVP.
Employee Value Proposition.

It’s what candidates want to know. It’s what companies who are hiring well right now are doubling down on. Companies who may not be lifting their salary bands (or as much as companies with weak EVPs are needing to).

Job offers are being rejected at unprecedented levels, and (at a level many employers won’t believe) it is not just the case of candidates always chasing the bigger buck. 

Talent Intelligence

In a recent Sonar report on VPs of Engineering (Sydney based), where candidates ranked their highest motivations for joining their next company, EVP outranked Salary & ESOP, which was closely followed by Company Purpose.

recent Sonar report on VPs of Engineering (Sydney based), where candidates ranked their highest motivations for joining their next company

*Sonar is Real Time’s unique Talent Intelligence tool which provides our clients with live data on the exact candidate markets they are currently, or planning to hire in. 

There is a lot of work to do to combat the worsening talent shortage in Tech.

And you can’t swallow the elephant in one bite. 

We’re here to help if you need. 

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Real Time Australia have been a supplier of contract resources to Equifax (formerly Veda Advantage) for a number of years. Their performance in sourcing candidates and responsiveness to requests have been excellent. Equifax recently conducted a global cyber security assessment of suppliers to determine downstream risk and compliance. Real Time Australia proved to be exemplary in their responses and attitude towards the technical and people components of cyber security. I would have no hesitation in recommending Real Time Australia if you are seeking a provider of contingent technical resources.
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Sourcing Leader (APAC),
Equifax

WorldStack had recently made the decision to build its internal engineering capability when we found Ellis and the Real Time team,who came in and coached us on how to best attract, interview and assess the developers we needed. Critically, Real Time took the time to understand our culture and values and the unique aspects of our work, so we spent most of our time having really engaging conversations with candidates that were already a great fit. I would highly recommend Ellis and the Real Time team to anyone looking to expand their technical team.
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Dan Holman
Founder
WorldStack

I had the pleasure of working with Sara at A2B while we were building the technology team. Sara effectively acted as our in-house recruiter and did a wonderful job helping us build the team, often having to find very narrow and specific skills on the one hand and also navigating our internal processes without the support of dedicated HR resources. In the end, we always found what we were looking for thanks to Sara. Sara was persistent, always cheerful and great fun to work with. Thank you Sara!

Glenn O’Brien
Chief People & Culture Officer
A2B

Before even graduating high school, Andy found something of interest in my limited Linkedin Profile and reached out to me Andy wanted to discuss a Front End Software Engineering role with Canva. Focusing on my exams, I wasn’t really looking for work, but had just applied to Google Australia for a Software Engineer role and was due in Sydney for interviews. Andy organized an opportunity for me to meet the team from Canva, including one of the co-founders Cliff.Meeting the team and seeing the vibe on Lacey St was very helpful in understanding my options and pathway into the workforce. The whole experience was fantastic and I am happy I made the choice to join Canva after being offered two other positions with a startup and Google. Having never dealt with a recruiter before Andy was informative, knowledgeable, helpful and engaged throughout the entire hiring process.
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Sam Parkinson
Frontend Software Engineer
Canva

I could not be happier with the result of working with Andy, a job at Google Australia. Coming back from London, applying whilst there, Andy targeted me for the right job. A perfect fit!
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Ged. Software Engineer
Google

Real Time Australia introduced me to my dream job at Afterpay in the most professional, caring and insightful way. Everyone at Real Time knew everything about me, the company, the market and all had specialist tech knowledge to a level I hadn’t experienced before.
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Joseph Khalil
Senior BA
Afterpay

Ellis & the Real Time Australia team have been extremely helpful in our expansion in to Sydney, especially within highly competitive software candidate markets. Their technical knowledge & candidate management skills have been the catalyst to securing some critical hires for REA all whilst being a highly professional and personable firm to deal with.
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Adam Richmond
Senior Talent Acquisition Business Partner
REA Group

Having worked at Real Time Australia before moving on to Google, I knew the team and what they were capable of.When leading the growth of the Google Australia Software Engineering team I needed 1st class Software Engineers and Real Time Australia was the obvious choice. Andy and his knowledgeable team supported our growth in the Software Engineering and Infrastructure divisions. Leaving Google I Joined Canva and again needed 1st class Software Engineers and I did not hesitate in contacting Andy. When you need a dedicated, knowledgeable, experienced Tech Resource Solutions Provider to help discover your needs, design a solution and secure top talent I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Andy and his team at Real Time Australia.
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Rick Goodfellow
Senior Talent Acquisition Lead
Canva

Oracle have been long term partners of Real Time Australia because of their consistent ability to source extremely rare contractors for us; always with speed and precision.The care that Ellis & Eloisa show their contractors, together with their innate efforts to understand of our team, specific requirements & business means that I can highly recommend partnering with them.
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Jimmy Tse
APAC Senior Director
Oracle

Real Time Australia has been with us since the beginning. Leading the design of our successful recruitment processes, guiding us on how to leverage data to effectively interview and really being an extension of the Inspace team, which has allowed us to scale!
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Justin Liang
Co-Founder & CEO
Inspace

At Betfair we’ve had some very large and unique growth projects that Ellis & the team at Real Time Australia expertly designed, managed & delivered for us; all whilst ensuring that our culture was at the forefront of every decision we made together.
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Jessica Howse
Head of People and Culture
Betfair

Ellis Taylor has been my main point of contact and I highly recommend him and the team at Real Time Australia for any contracting / special projects hiring needs now & in the future. They have been integral in our clients growth stories, placing close to 100 contractors and standing out as a partner due to their level of responsiveness, knowledge of the talent/legislative landscape & speed of hiring, which has only improved over their 15 year relationship with our clients in Australia.
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Sonal Nagpal
Senior Operations Manager
PRO Unlimited

I had the pleasure of working with Sara at A2B while we were building the technology team. Sara effectively acted as our in-house recruiter and did a wonderful job helping us build the team, often having to find very narrow and specific skills on the one hand and also navigating our internal processes without the support of dedicated HR resources. In the end, we always found what we were looking for thanks to Sara. Sara was persistent, always cheerful and great fun to work with. Thank you Sara!
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Glenn O’Brien
Chief People & Culture Officer
A2B

Sara & Real Time Australia are really good at what they do. They are by far the most successful Lat placing candidates in our organisation, they get the results (candidates I’m looking for. Professional, reliable and produces consistent results
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Deon Ludick
CTO
Cabcharge

Over five years they have consistently delivered a great service. Good to work with and make an effort to really understand what we need. Over a number of years Real Time have provided an excellent contracting service to our business. Responsive and collaborative, their searches consistently result in great candidates.
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Tom Ollsen
Director
Gresham Computing

Sara and her team have successfully placed candidates for us over the past 6 months in both contract and perm positions. We would highly recommend giving Sara an opportunity to find your next candidate, particularly with her knowledge, understanding and expertise within the payments industry specifically within POS. ATM, hosting and switching technologies.
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Paul Stewart
General Manager
EFTEX

Ellis and Real Time were instrumental in a high-volume, critical project for Aconex where they successfully sourced rare Contractors in a very short amount of time. Ellis helped design the project, create our best practice recruitment process and deliver quality candidates who were all delighted to work with him! Ellis thoroughly understood Aconex’s key requirements and was able to execute accordingly, which ultimately led to the success of this project. I personally found Ellis a pleasure to work with. He possesses excellent communication skills and would constantly keep myself and key stakeholders of the business in the loop with respect to the progress of the project. This was extremely important. Overall, the Aconex stakeholders and I were extremely pleased with the excellent work carried out by Ellis and the Real Time team. The project was a real success!

Marie Bernardo
Senior Manager
Aconex

Sara is a great recruiter and an accomplished business women in her own right. Someone I can highly recommend. Her approach is focused, practical and professional. She develops a detailed understanding of the needs of her clients. With years of specialist recruiting experience to offer you. If you are serious about looking for staff who will suit your needs (in a way that achieves results for your business), then Sara will help you find the right person.

Steven Clare
Founder
iemployu.com.au

Matt is by far one of if not the most professional, dedicated and ‘hard working’ recruiter I have ever had the opportunity to work with. His ability to source quality candidates relative to our requirements is second to none, always on-time and as-promised. I highly recommend Matt Kiker and would have no hesitation in leveraging or recommending his services again.
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Mike Rain
Presales Director, APAC
StealthBITS Technologies

Matt is by far one of if not the most professional, dedicated and ‘hard working’ recruiter I have ever had the opportunity to work with. His ability to source quality candidates relative to our requirements is second to none, always on-time and as-promised. I highly recommend Matt Kiker and would have no hesitation in leveraging or recommending his services again.
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Ken Hall
Managing Director
RemoteHQ

Ellis’ & Real Time Australia’s precise knowledge of the startup ecosystem was very helpful & his understanding of the Proptech environment was also impressive. He is someone who I trust and would also highly recommend for any scaleup.

Andrew Colagiuri
CEO & Co-Founder
FLK It Over

After landing in Australia Ebury had to grow, fast! We needed a business partner who knew the Fintech market inside out, could connect us with opportunities and who we could trust with our brand – Ellis + the team at Real Time Australia have been that and so much more.
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Rick Roache
Director
Ebury