How to RETAIN your best tech talent

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Competition for skilled talent remains strong in today’s employment market. Rising compensation and high demand for tech professionals means that they are more eager to jump on new opportunities.

Whilst money talks, when it comes to retaining the technical talent you want, salary isn’t everything. Company culture and career opportunities have a huge impact on their desire to stay, particularly when you’re up against trendy start-ups or well-paying tech giants. Inspiring your top tech talent to stay with you can seem like a constant uphill battle but it really doesn’t need to be that way. Here are some tips to ensure your best talent stick around:

Understand what your employees’ value:

Catered lunches, foosball tables, entertainment rooms and pet friendly offices. Of all industries, tech offers some of the most elaborate and trendy perks to help attract and retain talent. But do they work? Sure, they may be enticing in the early career stages but if you offer these perks without understanding what employees really need to do their best work, you’re unlikely to see an increase in retention rates or productivity from your investment.

We suggest the best way to know what your employees want is to engage with them and find out what benefits they value. Crucially, make sure you follow through on what they’ve told you. After all, back in 2018, talking to employees is how Facebook perfected its benefits in the first place. Every year Facebook invites their employees to complete a benefits survey which measures satisfaction and engagement with their benefits program.

Share the vision:

Meaningful work matters to all tech professionals and with the nature of their role, it can be easy to get boxed into their technical job title. Take the time to help them understand how each of their roles is contributing to the organisation’s mission and vision and highlight how their work matters to the bottom line. Employees who understand their purpose and contribution to the organisation’s overall goals will be more committed and engaged.

Vision, values, methods, obstacles and measures are all things which aligns the company’s leadership and strategy with each individual employee’s goals. This allows for clarification of the direction of the business and allows employees to map out their goals in alignment with the business.

People leave managers, not organisations: 

Tech professionals don’t just want to be left alone to code, they want to be able to contribute ideas and offer new ways to do things, so employ managers committed to helping employees grow. They should be good at motivating and inspiring their team members, managing performance – good and bad, and setting useful goals. Skilled managers drive performance, engagement and retention and play a key role in achieving business goals, so reward managers who successfully do so. It’s also advisable to take the time to review what your organisation does to develop its managers.

Encourage professional and personal development:

By investing in each employee’s development, you’re helping them get closer to achieving their career goals. Foster conversations that allow them to be honest and open about what they want to achieve on both a professional and personal level.

Encourage mentoring for ambitious individuals to direct and train junior employees. Send employees to conferences and meet-ups and give them the chance to work on other projects. Recommend online courses, webinars and communities for employees who want to grow their technical skill-set.

The provision of avenues of growth demonstrates that you value your employees, which is crucial for staff engagement and retention.

Promote from within:

Creating a company culture that values the career advancement of employees will lead to higher engagement and retention within the organisation. Rewarding high-performing employees demonstrates that you care about their career progression and development. It will also assist in creating a pipeline of strong talent for your organisation’s leadership. With highly-skilled tech professionals already in short supply, it makes sense to cultivate your candidates from within.

Don’t forget to share internal promotions with the organisation to demonstrate to other employees the growth potential available to them. It will create a more optimistic work environment and motivate employees to deliver for your company.

Invest in your tech talent and they will invest in you. Retaining your top technical talent doesn’t need to be complicated; creating a retention strategy that your employees find value in is key to keeping them engaged and securing them for the long haul.

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