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Skills-first hiring has CIOs rethinking talent strategies | CIO

April 19, 2024
CIO
Summary
In response to the competitive and sparse labor market, Jason Snyder, Massachusetts' Commonwealth CIO, has shifted to a skills-first hiring approach within the Executive Office of Technology Services and Security. This method emphasizes the practical skills of applicants over traditional qualifications like job history and academic degrees. This change aligns with a broader trend as evidenced by increasing adoption of skills-based hiring practices across various sectors, as detailed in recent LinkedIn reports and endorsed by Massachusetts Gov. Maura Healey's executive order. The approach aims to widen the talent pool, enhance workforce diversity, and streamline the hiring and training process, albeit facing challenges in implementation due to the demand for radically rethinking recruitment strategies. While some CIOs express reservations and mix traditional hiring criteria with skills-focused assessments, others, like Snyder, experience shortened vacancy periods and improved diversity through dedicated training programs and reduced education prerequisites.
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