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A Roadmap to Discover

Digital Talent
Use Data to Find the Right Digital
Talent — in Unexpected Places

Jeremy Citro, Talent Management Customer Success Director

© 2018 Gartner, Inc. and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved. Gartner is a registered trademark of Gartner, Inc.
or its affiliates. For more information, email or visit PR_385699


03 07 12
Digitalization Clouds Build Your Digital Data Reveals New
the Talent Picture Talent Profile Opportunities to Find
Digital Talent

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 2


Clouds the Talent

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 3

Digitalization Clouds the Talent Picture

Digitalization is the new normal — spanning product enhancements

like mobile- or chat-based applications to vast business transformations
Business leaders of product offerings, go-to-market channels and operations. Nearly
87% say digitalization nine out of 10 business leaders say digitalization is a top business
priority. The trend is here to stay.
is a priority Digitalization presents a huge growth opportunity for businesses,
and is a dynamic force. The average organization has undergone
five enterprise changes in the past three years, and 70% of key
talent say their job duties change every three years.

Since when do automakers hire people who As digitalization continues to disrupt business, all sectors of the
economy feel pressure to hire talent with digital skills, not just sectors
have no experience making cars? once viewed as sitting on the leading technological edge. Those
skills, such as big data, 3D printing, cloud hosting and virtual reality,
Since those cars began to drive themselves, of course. When Tesla are in demand across companies, sectors and industries. That
needed a head of autopilot software and hardware, the company also means more and more companies need new skills that are not
turned to a veteran executive from Apple. Yes, it’s true, the maker historically part of their core competencies.
of the iPhone is investing heavily in cars — or at least in the study
of machine learning and automated systems that enable self-driving
cars. Welcome to the digital world.
In 2017, Gartner found 47% of job
postings for S&P 100 companies
were for the same 37 roles.

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 4

Digitalization Clouds the Talent Picture

Many industries need the same digital skills

Digital Skills Are In High Demand Across Industries
Healthcare, financial services and auto manufacturing are just three
sectors undergoing digital transformation: Banks may have branches,
but customers transact via mobile phones and tablets; a surgeon
may program a computer while a robot makes the cuts; cars can Digital
drive themselves.
Machine Learning
and Artificial
As a result, each of these distinct industries now share a common Intelligence
and urgent need for a wide variety of digital skills and capabilities — Bioanalytical
many of which are new and emerging. Scientist

“Across industries, digital transformation initiatives are creating Distributed

enormous strain on defining capability needs, as well as enormous
3D Printing
competition for new talent skilled in navigating and manipulating and Additive
the digital environment,” says Dion Love, principal executive Manufacturing
advisor at Gartner. Infotainment and
of Things
“Simply put, it is even harder Big Data and
Predictive Analytics
today than say 3 – 4 years ago and Modeling

to plan for and to find and hire Cybersecurity

the talent we need.” Fraud Detection

and Analytics
Dion Love, Principal Executive Advisor, Gartner
Air Battery

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 5

Digitalization Clouds the Talent Picture

Amid this talent crunch for digital skills and capabilities, Big data clarifies digital talent picture
companies must hire talent with which they had little
experience prior to the rise of digital business. Automakers, You can cut through the confusion around digital talent with
for instance, traditionally built their talent strategies around a rigorous approach, driven by big data, that homes in on the
core competencies in manufacturing and engineering, but job functions and skills you need for growth and locates talent.
as they race startups and tech giants to deploy autonomous Data also supports fact-based dialogue between key stakeholders
vehicles, they need experts in sophisticated software and around, for instance, the time it takes to fill positions or the
emerging technologies like artificial intelligence (AI). This leaves availability of qualified candidates.
companies under enormous pressure to fill unfamiliar roles.
“Labor market data is the essential ingredient in finding the talent
you need for the digital age,” says Jeremy Citro, talent management
customer success director at TalentNeuron, now offered by
“Labor market data is the essential Gartner. “There is a significant missed opportunity to leverage
external supply and demand data to drive how we make decisions
ingredient in finding the talent you need about the digital capabilities we need (forecast) and attract and
for the digital age.” hire these professionals (find).”

Jeremy Citro, Talent Management Customer Success

Director, TalentNeuron

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 6


Build Your Digital

Talent Profile

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 7

Build Your Digital Talent Profile

To capitalize on digitalization, it is important To capture the opportunities of digitalization, BFSI firms need
capabilities — among others — in robotics process automation
to identify the current state of your business, (for automating certain tasks, activities and processes that once
how it will be transformed and what that required human interaction), machine learning (computerized
detection of data patterns from big data) and artificial intelligence
means for your talent needs. (to power the chatbot that provides quotes).

Labor market data helps you spot emerging skills within an industry
or across industries that are growing in demand before they
The first step is to identify:
become commoditized and are on all your competitors’ hiring
• Upcoming new skills for existing roles radars. TalentNeuron tracking of jobs posted and skills for those
• Entirely new roles that are emerging roles in highest demand shows demand is converging across
industries for the same, highly specialized digital skills.

Organizations can use current and historical labor market data to

identify which skills are in hot demand for an industry or job function
today and how demand for technical talent may shift in the future.

For example, consider how digitalization/financial technology (fintech)

is disrupting the global banking, financial services and insurance
(BFSI) sector. Digitalization has allowed BFSI firms to create better,
faster, cheaper services; enable new channels for customer service;
and revamp their business models so they can serve a tech-savvy
customer base with mobile wallets, digital banking, cryptocurrencies
and blockchain technology.

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 8

Build Your Digital Talent Profile

AI is everywhere, but do you know what

you need? Recruiters take longer to fill jobs they don’t
know well
What is your company’s business case for digitalization, and what
will that mean for talent? +25
Insurers are using AI to customize auto policies and design
coverage and premium rates to reduce risks or adjust premiums
to better cover risks. 66 Days 91 Days
If you plan to deploy AI, you will need to know which skills and to fill a familiar role to fill an unfamiliar role
capabilities to add, now and in the future. Your needs will depend
on how you plan to use AI (e.g., gaming, speech recognition), which
component parts of AI will make up your applications (e.g., pattern
Digital talent is not created equal
recognition, search) and what component tools will be used (e.g.,
Vicarious, Jade).

Without robust labor market data, it is tough to define or redefine

the talent capabilities you’ll need for growth, and therefore how
to allocate hiring investments for greatest return. Without good
talent profiles, it can be tough to recruit quickly, especially because “I know expert “I’m strong in natural
it typically takes longer to hire for positions that are not familiar systems, experience language, logical and
learning, patterns, search patterns, and
to recruiters.
Vicarious and Soar.” really know Jade.”

AI Expert A AI Expert B

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 9

Build Your Digital Talent Profile

Unheard-of roles emerge

Some digital roles are entirely new, and emerge as technologies Similarly, demand for data scientists, considered a somewhat
evolve. These jobs and titles may not have existed previously, but new role in 2010, grew 20-fold in the ensuing six years, and big
are suddenly in demand across industries. Think about some of data science now includes distinct profiles, such as architects
the digital functions that have grown exponentially in recent years, and ecologists, that didn’t exist in the past.
from digital spins on traditional roles like marketing to completely
new roles around emerging technologies like machine learning. If your industry expects to leverage existing and emerging
The trend in machine learning exemplifies the growth in digital technologies, you need to assess which capabilities you need
talent development, where a few dedicated roles grow and divide now, and which you will need in the future. Current, historical and
into multiple specialties, each of which is highly sought. predictive external data shows which skills are in hot demand
for an industry or job function today, and how that demand may
shift over time. Even for digital functions farther along the maturity
curve, labor market data shows which skills are established or
maturing vs. those increasing in importance for the future.
Some digital roles are
entirely new, and emerge
as technologies evolve.

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 10

Build Your Digital Talent Profile

New Skills Emerge and

Demand Growth for Those
Jobs Is Rapid
Example: Machine Learning
Then and Now Deep Learning
Software Engineer
Machine Learning 300%

Software Intelligence
Engineers Engineer


Engineer 175%
Machine Learning

Program Machine
Manager/Project Language
Manager Researcher


2011 Machine Learning: Since 2011: 6 new roles have surfaced solely
A specialized skill; part dedicated to machine learning. The need
of a data engineering or for some of these specialists has increased
programming role by 300% during that time

Source: Gartner TalentNeuron

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 11


Data Reveals
New Opportunities
to Find Digital

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 12

Data Reveals New Opportunities to Find Digital Talent

Explore five data-driven ways to find talent:

1. Tap locations with less of a talent squeeze. Is your first thought, First you’d ask “Where do we find those people?” But that isn’t
when looking for digital talent in the U.S., to search in Silicon Valley enough information to find the optimal place to hire. Rather, by
or Seattle?” This is an obvious approach, but places with a multitude overlaying data on demand, we get a new perspective — and
of talent are also hotbeds of demand, especially for new roles that a more complete picture. In the case of RPA professionals, London
are needed across industries. By analyzing data on both the supply has the largest pool of talent, but demand there is very strong;
and demand sides of labor, you get a clearer picture of which Toronto has less talent available, but not as much demand. It may
locations to target. be more productive, then, to search in Toronto, especially for
incremental hires.
What if you are looking for professionals with skills suitable for
robotics process automation (RPA) roles, like automation developers Similarly, layering demand, supply and other data can better target
and system analysts? sourcing and hiring investments for sustainable future talent growth.
Again, it’s not always the established or most mature hubs with
the largest talent pools that are best for meeting future hiring targets.
In the case of certain software developers in the U.S., for example,
Analyze data on both the Denver, Colorado, has a growing supply of talent, and the demand
supply and demand sides of is not as heavy as in other markets.

labor to get a clearer picture

of which locations to target.

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 13

Data Reveals New Opportunities to Find Digital Talent

Look at the Talent

Squeeze, Not Just
the Supply
Example: Robotics Process
Automation (RPA) Toronto London
~ 100,000 RPA professionals ~ 250,000 RPA professionals
Supply Job openings represent Job openings at 15% of the
Demand 13% of the talent pool available talent pool
About 8 professionals for About 7 professionals for
every job posting every job posting




San Diego

Source: Gartner TalentNeuron

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 14

Data Reveals New Opportunities to Find Digital Talent

2. Check out cities with emerging talent pools. Digital talent Data provides important insight into current market conditions and
searches often target established hubs, but data identifies the next emerging sources of talent. In the U.S., Denver hosts an emerging
tier of cities where digital talent pools are nascent. In these locations, supply of certain software developers, but demand there is not
you can stretch limited recruiting resources and pull specific HR yet that strong. In cloud computing, talent pools are emerging
levers like recruitment advertising or relocation packages to expand beyond established hubs like the Bay Area of California and Seattle.
your pipeline of suitable candidates and build your talent pool. Austin and Baltimore, Maryland, for example, offer growing pools
of professionals for cloud security roles, given that Baltimore has
a growing aerospace and defense industry and Austin is home
to Dell, a leading cloud storage and IT services provider.

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 15

Data Reveals New Opportunities to Find Digital Talent

Example: Software
Developers in the U.S.

Optimal Locations For Hiring

for the Next 5 Years/Longer Term
Adequate skilled talent with competitive,
not frenzied, demand. (Added bonus:
Located more centrally than U.S.
coastal talent hubs)

New York
Washington D.C.


Source: Gartner TalentNeuron

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 16

Data Reveals New Opportunities to Find Digital Talent

Consider Alternative
Cities With Emerging
Talent Pools
Example: U.S. Cloud Computing Beyond established hubs (black),
the next tier of cities (blue) can
be good additional locations for
Installed talent is: expanding the candidate pool.
Greater than 10,000
5,000 – 9,999

Less than 5,000


Minneapolis Boston
New York
Bay Area Baltimore Philadelphia
St. Louis Washington D.C.
Los Angeles

Phoenix Atlanta
San Diego


Source: Gartner TalentNeuron

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 17

Data Reveals New Opportunities to Find Digital Talent

3. Mine adjacent companies and industries. As you search 4. Analyze roles internally to fill the talent pipeline. Labor
for digital talent, you may bump up against adjacent industries market data also helps you identify potential internal capabilities
and companies looking for the same people. Don’t just see this for high-growth digital roles. For example, you can look at what
new competition as a threat — see the opportunity. Use data jobs or titles were previously held by the professionals you currently
to discover which companies are actively hiring for the talent you employ in key roles. By looking at how people typically progressed
want, and add these nonobvious sectors to your own sourcing to a given role, you can look into your organization to identify people
criteria to build a larger, more viable candidate pool. who might be good candidates for grooming into key digital roles.

Consider roles in digital operations. Even within the tech sector, Data also shows predecessor roles in given industries. This can
a diverse range of companies across IT sectors (e.g., software, be especially helpful when looking for talent designated as critical
wireless and IT services) are all hiring digital talent with skills in key for business growth. And some pathways are consistent across
functions like marketing, search engine optimization and cloud industries. For instance, because iOS developer is an entry-level
computing. Big names like Amazon, Oracle, Microsoft, IBM, Dell role, companies often hire graduates with computer science and
and Apple are all in the market for these same skills, but so are related degrees at the entry level and provide training, but most
healthcare insurers looking for online advertising professionals iOS developers have backgrounds as software engineer/interns or
and banks looking for quality assurance skills. software developers.

Data highlights pockets of hiring activity — in adjacent segments 5. Search untapped graduate talent pools. Given the
within a core industry or in totally separate sectors — that can hypercompetition for mature and emerging digital roles, it’s important
be an unexpected source of talent for your pipelines. to target entry-level talent pipelines that are the foundation of future
capability growth. Recruiters are always keen to build relationships
with flagship schools well-known for producing certain IT capabilities.
Data helps you go beyond the schools with big-name notoriety to
uncover potential pools of skills you may not be considering. For
instance, career or technical institutes may be producing IT talent
for certain job families like software engineering. These schools have
an ancillary, but potentially lucrative, role in campus hiring programs.

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 18

There is no question that digitalization complicates talent With these data insights in hand, you can leverage tactics that go
management. All industries are somewhere on the spectrum of beyond the norm and identify talent pools both within your own
digitalization. The associated disruption changes business models company/industry (in predecessor roles) and beyond the most
and, in turn, the way you define, plan and find the talent that will established markets. Then it’s time to pull a variety of HR levers
help you transform your product offerings, go-to-market channels to appeal to, capture and retain your digital talent.
and operations.

The good news is that labor market analytics give you an edge
in forecasting and finding digital talent. You can use data to:

• Analyze external trends to better understand how skills are

evolving, and what your own organization’s future demand will
be for various digital skills.
• Assess supply and demand for emerging talent to get a clearer
and truer picture of realistic opportunities for investing in digital
capabilities for growth.
• Identify untapped or nonobvious talent pools that augment
your digital talent sourcing criteria for emerging digital roles.

A Roadmap to Discover Digital Talent 19

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© 2018 Gartner, Inc. and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved. Gartner is a registered trademark of Gartner, Inc.
or its affiliates. For more information, email or visit PR_385699