Employee Retention: 5 Tips for Retaining Top IT Talent



Employee retention is a hot topic right now. With the jobs market at pre-pandemic levels already, more and more people are moving on to a new challenge. On top of this, the skills shortage we all experienced before Covid is now back with a vengeance. So it is more important than ever that you look after your top talent.
We have put together our top tips to help you hold on to your most valuable commodity, and arguably your only true competitive advantage – your staff!

Employee retention starts with recruitment and on-boarding

As many as 76% of companies are not onboarding their new hires properly! And when you consider how difficult it is right now to attract the best candidates, this is truly remarkable. When someone starts with your company, they are full of enthusiasm and are open to learning more. Use this time wisely.

Increasing the salary won’t cut it, or certainly not for long

Last week, we wrote a blog on counter offers and the shocking truth remains – these are the least effective way to solve your employee retention problems. Did you know that it’s proven that 80% of people leave within 6 months of accepting a counter offer? And what’s worse, 90% leave within 12 months. So, at best, you are just extending the time until you have to look for a replacement. Counter offers should be viewed as a short term strategy as they rarely work out in the long term.
It’s highly unlikely that salary is the only reason that is making someone in your team look for another job.

Make growth and development a priority

This is particularly important in IT. And, when it’s shown that companies who do make growth and development a priority experience 53% lower attrition then it’s worth investing your time. It doesn’t have to be anything formal, although this will help, but simply giving people the opportunity to learn and develop with you, will not only benefit them as individuals. According to LinkedIn, as many as 94% would stay longer if their company invested in their professional development.
Think about where your company may be in 2 – 5 years’ time. Have you got the technology in place to help take you on that journey? If not, then this is the perfect opportunity for some development for your team. Get them involved!

Recognition and appreciation – the key to employee retention

There are several ways to approach recognition and reward and we would always recommend a combination for the best results.
Firstly, there are the tangible rewards. A thank you for a job well done. These can be shopping vouchers, additional days off or a bonus. But these rewards have an expiry date and people are loyal up to the point that they receive the award. Unless you are happy to run these incentives on a monthly or even quarterly basis, they are unlikely to prevent someone from moving on to a new job.
What will really make you stand out from the crowd are intangible rewards and recognition. These are the only things that are truly unique to your company. You’ll have heard the phrase ‘people don’t leave jobs, they leave managers’ and we see this on a daily basis. Being appreciated by your manager and having a good relationship with them is something that can’t easily be replaced.
Longer term rewards like promotions and pay rises that show you are paying attention to what your employees are achieving and rewarding them accordingly. This goes a long way!



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