The coming years promise a lot of change. Many companies have already embraced digitization and automation to an extent, but virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), machine learning, and artificial intelligence (AI) are poised to become even greater assets to businesses of all sizes. What do these changes mean for your company and what do they mean for hiring a technology specialist?
How you prepare for the future of business is important. Tech advancements will affect various industries in different, yet similar, ways. Experts agree that machine learning and AI will generate the most change. While this tech is meant to enhance the world of business, it can pose new challenges for both a company and its employees – but that doesn’t mean there aren’t benefits.
Workplace technology’s greatest achievement is increased productivity. Each new advancement eradicates routine tasks that used to eat up much of an employee’s day, offering new opportunities for strategic thinking and innovation.
Before we dive into tips for hiring a technology specialist, let’s look at the job functions of a tech specialist.
What is a Technology Specialist?
With such a transformation occurring in the business world, a technology specialist is something few businesses can afford to be without. A tech specialist caters to all the technological needs of a company. They’re responsible for implementing, monitoring, and maintaining all tech systems, including (but not limited to):
- Network analysis
- System admin
- Security assurance
- Information technology audits
- Database and web administration
3 Tips for Hiring a Technology Specialist
Knowing what a tech specialist is doesn’t necessarily define why you need one, what tech skills the perfect candidate should have, or what questions you should ask potential candidates.
These three tips for hiring a technology specialist can help you find the right one for your company.
1) Know why you need one
Why should you hire a technology specialist? Having this professional on your team (or a team of technology specialists) gives you access to knowledge about:
They also maintain daily operations and ensure your system’s integrity. Qualified tech specialists communicate effectively; keep up with current and evolving technologies; and resolve issues quickly to maintain satisfied clients.
Specific duties of tech specialists include:
- Diagnosing, troubleshooting, and solving workstation, equipment, and operating systems issues
- Developing strategies that increase efficiency and workflow management
- Performing hardware/software installation and upgrading when necessary
- Training team members on how to use equipment and navigate systems
- Collaborating with team members, clients, contractors, and clients to discover needs or concerns
2) Know what qualifications a technology specialist should have
If you don’t know how to recognize a capable technology specialist, you could waste precious resources. Candidates that dedicate themselves to consistent results will make great additions to your team.
Qualifications you should look for in a technology specialist include:
- Associate’s/bachelor’s degree in information technology, computer science, or a related field
- Industry-specific program certifications, such as Cybersecurity, Networking (Cisco Certified Network Associate), or a Programming Certification, like C++
- Technical concept and systems knowledge
- Good time-management skills
- Knowledge of troubleshooting methods
- Analytical thinking skills
3) Know what questions to ask a potential candidate
As a hiring manager, you know technical qualifications only go so far. There’s more you need to know about potential candidates when staffing this type of role. Hard skills are important, but soft skills and the ability to take initiative are just as important. To get past the exterior, on-paper skill set of a candidate, set the resume aside and prepare some thoughtful questions for the interview process.
The questions you ask shouldn’t necessarily be the ones hiring managers always ask. If you ask a question the candidate’s been practicing for, you might just hear a well-rehearsed response rather than actually get to know the candidate. The ultimate questions you ask should:
- Draw the candidate out of their shell
- Test their technical knowledge
- Measure how they respond to various situations
As the candidate answers your questions, listen attentively — not just to what they’re saying, but how they’re saying it. Of course, the candidate must possess the skills to do the job, but do they have the interpersonal skills to find success with the rest of your team?
Some potential questions could include:
- Have you ever failed at a project? How did you work through it?
- If our systems suffered a breach, explain how you would handle it and what you’d do going forward to ensure it didn’t happen again.
- Can you ensure a breach won’t happen on your watch?
- Have you overseen the replacement of major systems?
- How do you manage several overlapping projects?
Hiring a Technology Specialist—Final Thoughts
Having someone well-versed in the rapidly developing tech field can help your team remain one step ahead. A well-rounded team enriches your business. Reach out to Locus Recruiting for help finding just the right candidate for your advancing tech needs.