In such a competitive market for IT talent, companies can’t expect to only fill open positions and then move their focus onto the next job vacancy. Abounding opportunities in IT mean that tech experts can quickly find new positions if their current employer isn’t proactively engaging in retention efforts.
Employee expectations are high nowadays. Companies must have a strategy for not only recruiting top tech talent but then keeping those same consultants. Here are some of the ways to engage employees with a strong company culture, benefits, gratitude, advancement opportunities and more
First, Think About Your People
Today’s workforce is comprised of Baby Boomers, Generation x, Millennials, and Generation Z employees, all with different expectations and needs, as to what they want from an employer. What’s one of the common incentives to hiring top IT talent? Flexible work schedule, according to Mercer’s 2018 Global Talent Trends Study. More employees are looking for companies that allow them to flex their hours or work remotely even one day a week. By offering this upfront as an option or even a possibility down the road, you can greatly shift an employee’s perception of their life at your company.
With multiple generations of employees in the workforce one can’t assume a one size fits all incentive that will entice and motivate everyone. People’s needs, and motivators are all different, the job of leadership is to be consistent in recognizing those difference and adjust accordingly.
Additional perks which focus on employee’s health and wellness such as discounted gym memberships, team building events, office snacks, and more all go back to focusing on helping your employees first. Prioritizing your employee’s well-being and needs in the beginning will help fight employee burnout and is a basic approach to retaining talent for years to come.
Create and Maintain a Strong Company Culture
According to a study conducted by The Energy Project, 50% out of 12,000 people mentioned their current work lacked meaning or purpose. When you dive deeper into why employees are lacking meaning behind their work, many are only focused on the “what” of their business. It’s critical for leadership teams to instill the “why” behind what their team does and shift their team’s perception to have a greater sense of purpose behind what they do every day.
Within our organization, our core values are a part of our daily routines. Leadership members of an organization is where it begins. If a company says it values teamwork, leadership members should build a foundation to foster team-working activities, thereby cultivating a culture within each faucet of the organization to support that original stance.
Establishing core values is just the beginning, maintaining those core values requires a strategy where time and resources are dedicated to keeping them alive. Strong company culture only works when employees feel valued and when leaders are showing gratitude for their team. Your internal team can be an incredible benefit to the overall company culture, make sure as a manager you are bridging the gap between leadership and employees.
Listen to your employees and partners
Employees appreciate organizations that are open and transparent in their processes. From the beginning of the hiring process, set the expectations for new employees on how the team works, the day to day activities, and the goals of the organization. From newly on-boarded candidates to a veteran employee, organizations should be reviewing all employee feedback, whether it’s from internal conducted surveys or interviews. When people have a voice in their organization, and know they’re being heard, they’re empowered, more connected to the organization’s mission, and will want to stay with that organization longer. As a leader always be asking, how can we do better for our team? Then listen.
In all if not most organizations, an HR department facilitates those open and transparent conversations with employees. What sets a part a good organization from a great organization is when managers have that same level of communication with their employees regularly. Employees want to be a part of an organization that allows open conversations with their leaders, even those that have healthy conflict.
To fully commit to an open and supportive culture, leaders can’t shy away from healthy conflict in the workplace. Healthy conflict is built on a foundation of respect and trust across all levels of an organization. With a culture to support healthy conflict, employees express their opinions and give feedback more often; fostering new ideas, engaging different perspectives and ultimately driving innovation.
Encourage Employee’s Overall Career Progress
To attract and keep the top IT talent, leaders must consistently find new ways to grow their offerings to encourage individual employee success and career growth within an organization. Leaders should be an advocate for their team’s success and each individual employee’s career growth. The technology space is fast-paced, always changing, always learning.
As a company, make a commitment to supporting employee development, whether it’s by offering tuition reimbursement, learning programs, or being involved in networking events. All these options give each employee an opportunity to find what works best for them and their career path.
One of the best pieces of advice I can give any employee is there is no replacement for experience. On the flip side as leaders, to retain good employees, they will be looking for experiences that allow them to grow and develop their skills. A lot of mentoring goes into empowering an employee’s career progress, so be ready to lead by example.
The next time you’re hiring, keep these basics principles front of mind when strategizing on how to retain your top talent. Remember to get to know your employee’s needs and flexibilities. Create a strong company culture that reminds your employees of the “why” behind what you do, maintain that culture, listen, and empower your employees to develop their careers.