Canadian CIOs Reveal Top Barriers to Securing Tech Talent

Out of Reach Compensation Expectations and Candidate Shortages to Blame, Report Shows

Toronto, ON – The tech sector has long been called a job-seekers market, and while it bodes well for IT workers, the odds are often stacked against employers. In a new survey from Robert Half Technology, Canadian CIOs offered insights on today’s hiring difficulties. The most common barrier to landing the best candidates is not being able to meet salary demands (30 per cent), followed by not finding enough qualified applicants (26 per cent) and not being seen as an employer of choice (22 per cent).

A lengthy hiring process is also a hindrance. The Robert Half Technology research shows it takes an average of 4.9 weeks to fill a staff-level IT role, and 23 per cent of technology leaders surveyed said their hiring process takes longer than they would like.

From the candidate’s perspective, a report from Robert Half found that the most frustrating part of the job search is the long post-interview wait to hear if they got the job, according to 64 per cent of workers. When asked how long they are willing to wait for a status update from an employer before losing interest in the role, 71 per cent of workers surveyed said up to two weeks.

“First impressions go both ways in the hiring process, and it’s important that companies establish a positive relationship with technology candidates early on,” said Deborah Bottineau, senior regional manager of Robert Half Technology. “The more drawn-out or complicated the hiring process, the likelier it is that job seekers will lose patience with the company, and interest in the position. Developing a decisive recruitment strategy that includes a well-rounded, competitive compensation package will keep talented candidates engaged, and prevent them from seeking opportunities elsewhere.”

Robert Half Technology, CIO Hiring Challenges, Canada


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CIOs say these are the most common barriers to their firms when hiring top candidates:

30% Candidates want higher salaries than we offer
26% Not enough qualified applicants
22% Company is not seen as an employer of choice


CIOs were asked, “How long does it typically take to fill a staff-level IT role in your department?”

20% One to two weeks
31% Three to four weeks
33% Between one and three months
1% More than three months

On average, CIOs reported it takes 4.9 weeks to fill a staff-level IT role.

23% of CIOs say the hiring process for staff-level IT roles takes longer than they would like

64% of workers surveyed said the most frustrating part of the job search is the long-wait post-interview to hear if they got the job.

Workers were asked, “After an interview, how long are you willing to wait for an employer to inform you of your status before you lose interest in the role?”

24% Up to one week
47% One to two weeks
24% Two to four weeks
5% More than a month

Source: Robert Half Technology survey of more than 270 CIOs and Robert Half survey of 400 workers in Canada.

© 2017 Robert Half Technology

Robert Half Technology offers five tips for keeping the hiring process efficient:

  1. Be prepared. Before posting a job opening, communicate with your team to determine the skills and experience needed. Use industry resources such as the Robert Half Technology Salary Guide to research the latest salaries, benefits, incentives and perks to see what you can offer.
  2. Work with a recruiter. If you’re short of time and resources to hire, contact a staffing firm that can give you accurate insights into the local market and assist you throughout the hiring process.
  3. Move quickly. Don’t allow too much time to pass between interviews, internal discussions and the final offer. Have your key staff members meet top candidates so you can make a speedy and well-supported decision.
  4. Communicate openly and often. Be transparent throughout different phases of the interview process. Clearly describe the role, responsibilities and compensation package, and always update your top candidates on their status and the next steps.
  5. Make an offer. When your team decides to extend an offer, make sure the compensation is fair and competitive. Have internal discussions with human resources to know your limitations in case of salary negotiations.


About the Research

The survey of more than 270 CIOs in Canada was developed by Robert Half Technology and conducted by independent research firms. The survey of more than 400 Canadian workers currently employed in professional environments was developed by Robert Half and conducted by an independent research firm.

About Robert Half Technology

With more than 100 locations worldwide, Robert Half Technology is a leading provider of technology professionals for initiatives ranging from web development and multiplatform systems integration to network security and technical support. Robert Half Technology offers online job search services at Visitors can also request a copy of the Robert Half Technology 2017 Salary Guide, which includes a wide range of IT job descriptions. Follow, and @RobertHalf_CAN on Twitter for additional workplace advice and hiring trends.