When companies and organizations have a technical issue, they often look for resources. There is not enough specific knowledge, experience or technical skills in-house to solve the problem themselves. Unfortunately, especially within larger organizations, hiring capacity is seen as a generic HR procurement process. This too often results in the wrong person for the wrong price. In other words, a pedestal without a monkey. In this blog, we try to expose this problem.
In practice, we regularly encounter the following example problem: product owners and IT managers experience ever-increasing performance issues in and around the production database, for example MariaDB with Galera Cluster. There is sometimes even downtime. The suspicion of the in-house IT team is that, due to the growth of the database, a number of different variables are causing such a poor performing environment. This creates some doubt as to whether the internal team has the right know-how. Moreover, an IT manager then also wants to investigate right away, for example, whether migrating to a cloud (native) database is smart.
The alleged solution
The IT manager steps to HR and indicates a need for specific MariaDB knowledge combined with Galera Cluster and knowledge of Ansible. HR starts the hiring process, creates a profile and asks management for formal approval to hire an FTE. After approval, HR distributes the request to a number of pre-selected brokers or secondment agencies. Through the broker's network, someone is eventually found. A good interview follows, and this person goes through the onboarding process, gets inducted and blends into the team. He, she or they lose a lot of time with open tickets and backlog items. Knows a few improvements. Can't actually help with advice on migration because there is no benchmarking knowledge and the person hired is himself a huge fan of MariaDB on premise.
Everything remains as it was
In short, we drank a glass, took a pee and everything remains as it was. And after six months, "the project" is done and the organization is a small ton further. But was the desired result actually achieved? That's a good question.
HR procurement process
In these cases, established HR processes lead to:
- Long lead time
HR processes have long lead times. Between the creation of the demand and the day someone actually starts there can be as little as two months. In some organizations with stringent screening requirements, this can sometimes be as long as four months!
- Down on your luck
By limiting oneself to hiring through the network of pre-selected brokers, one does not necessarily get the best specialist with the right knowledge for the specific issue. After all, one is dependent on availability within the network at that specific moment. So you get the specialist who is available at that moment. And that is not necessarily the most suitable one.
- Tunnel vision
Because an individual is hired with specific experience, the question is whether this IT person actually has the helicopter view, knowledge and experience to find and choose the right solution in this specific situation. There is a high degree of dependence on this individual and to what extent they can think "out of the box.
One stays within budget because the processes have been followed, hiring term and hourly rate are delineated. But hiring a full-time IT professional for three to six months (read 80k) for a performance issue and a migration study is flat out a very big bucket of money.
The monkey on the pedestal
The monkey on the pedestalWriter, trainer and behavioral scientist Ben Tiggelaar had a great working tip a few weeks ago: "The monkey on the pedestal. Astro Teller, executive at Google X, used this metaphor to explain how they can innovate. To innovate, you have to be focused on teaching the monkey the trick. If the monkey can do the trick, you will naturally find a pedestal soon. But many organizations start with the pedestal. Read Ben Tiggelaar's working tip here. So if you want to add knowledge by focusing on capability, you focus on the pedestal. Whereas it's all about the monkey.
So how to do it?
So it's better to focus on the solution instead of just following the process. The ultimate goal of a project or task is to find a solution to a specific challenge. If you only follow the process, you may end up not finding an effective solution because you simply haven't considered the right solution. By starting with the solution, you are more inclined to think creatively and out-of-the-box. This irrevocably leads to better results in a shorter period of time. Moreover, a solution-oriented approach helps you use time and resources more efficiently.
Choosing direction first
In our view, every major issue begins with research, analysis, evaluation of solution directions and choosing direction. Only then is the question of how this solution can be implemented addressed. Hiring capacity is one of the options.
Give direction to your issues
There are IT companies, as OptimaData is also one, that operate in a specific niche and have specialized knowledge. These companies are solution- and results-oriented. They help organizations take direction on their issues. For a fraction of the investment of hiring, the solution can be formulated with all the knowledge and expertise of the consulting firm and also looks at solutions off the beaten path.
The client is then empowered to make an informed choice and set out a focused work order through the beaten HR path or even the specialist agency itself.
Want to know more?
Want to experience how we approach issues? Are you hesitating to hire us and want to try a different approach? Give us a call, we'll be happy to help.