Find suitable IT service providers & digital experts faster (Part 1)

Many companies are familiar with the situation: a project should start as soon as possible, but the team is not yet complete. Every day spent searching for suitable experts may delay the start of the project and cost money. But what are important factors to reduce this time? We have analysed more than 25,000 project tenders and would like to share our findings to help SMEs and corporations find suitable IT experts or IT service providers faster. Let's start with part 1 of our analysis and look at the formulation of objectives and skill requirements in the title and description of the project.

Requirements and skills

Regardless of whether an entire team or a solo expert is being sought, it is important that the requirements of an IT project are as concrete and clear as possible. Here it is recommended that tenders are formulated directly by or in cooperation with a technical department. In this way, experience from past projects can be incorporated and requirements can be described in an IT-oriented and unambiguous manner. Therefore, all important skills of the project should be listed. Especially mandatory skills - especially if the project is based on existing standards and infrastructures - should be mentioned and marked as such.

Our analysis of the time that elapses between the tender and the award of a project shows that a higher number of skills in a tender can shorten the award time. On average, a tender with 3 to 10 skills takes 1 day less than a tender with 0 to 2 skills. More than 10 skills even shorten the award duration by almost 3 days. The medians of the award duration in days were considered in each case.

Meaningful title and detailed description

Just as the search for IT resources can be time-consuming for companies, the search for projects is often a necessary evil for digital experts and IT service providers. Therefore, the title of a tender should give an idea of the requirements of the project at first glance. Here, too, the more concrete the better. Terms such as software developer, data scientist or project manager hide various requirement profiles. Better are titles like Backend Developer for Mobile Apps (m/f/d), Java Developer for Test Automation (m/f/d) or Data Analyst in Market Research (m/f/d).

The focus should also be on formulating the goals of the project in order to create a precise understanding on the part of the digital experts. A specific description will help them to decide whether they are suitable for a project. Our analysis has shown that more detailed descriptions significantly speed up the awarding process. Descriptions with more than 2000 characters (equivalent to about 23 lines of body text or 250 words) shorten the award time by an average of 3 days compared to shorter descriptions. Descriptions with more than 3000 characters (~35 lines) even lead to a 7-day faster award on average. However, the latter is especially true if the description's content is also improved by a higher number of characters. An unnecessary lengthening of the description is therefore not a solution.

Conclusion: 4 tips for a shorter award period

The core statements of our first analysis on the topic of 'Finding suitable IT service providers and digital experts more quickly' can be summarised as follows:

  1. Formulate tenders together with IT-savvy and project-involved staff.
  2. List all necessary skills and highlight the most important ones. As a guideline: 5-10 skills should be listed at least.
  3. The title of the call for proposals should make it clear who is being sought for which project. Try to be as specific as possible in the terms used.
  4. Detailed descriptions are worthwhile, because a meaningful explanation of the project's content can significantly reduce the time needed to award the contract.

In our next analyses, we will look at the influence of project length and remote and part-time options, among other things. We will also look at which IT roles are assigned the fastest.

Are you looking for IT service providers or solo digital experts for a project in your company? On Lyncronize we support you with our skill-based matching to find IT experts and teams that fit your project exactly.