Staff retention: Keep your top techie troop from flying the coop

Hiring and retaining top tech talent is crucial to the success of your company’s overall goals. Use these tips to keep staff morale and staff retention high.

Technology advancements are driving business change, delivering growth and innovation across multiple sectors and prompting the need for additional IT talent. Yet, increased investment and further initiatives in both technology and non-technology businesses have compounded a talent shortage, which is set to continue in 2016.

Organisations however are not only confronted with challenges in the area of recruitment, successfully retaining IT staff is also becoming increasingly important. Almost nine out of ten (87%) CIOs are concerned about losing IT top talent this year which makes effective staff employee retention policies all the more important in today’s job market.

As companies increase their online presence and demand for qualified technology staff grows, what are some things your company can do to keep your top IT employees from seeking greener pastures?

Value their work

It is important that your employees do not feel undervalued. IT departments act as a resource but the effectiveness of its staff is crucial to the achievement of projects and the overall success of the company. Respect and positive reinforcement is as important to an IT professional as any other employee, so show them that their work is valued.

Let them innovate

People who work in technology love to innovate. As an example, tech giant Google allows its tech staff to work on whatever they choose for an agreed amount of time every week.

This time-out period inspires creativity in the workplace and those building a passion project with company support are more likely to feel inspired in their everyday tasks. Google’s example may be difficult to follow for many companies on a tighter budget, however allowing staff to innovate in the areas they are passionate about is a great way to keep them from looking for career prospects elsewhere.

Value their opinion

When it comes to digital products and tools, we all have loyalty to a particular brand – and your IT team is no different. Allow your tech team to give input about the tools and technologies used in the company, whether it’s hardware or software. It’s worth listening to their requests and trying to meet them. Depending on the size of your business, keep an R&D budget aside to trial new activities and products.

Take them along for the ride

A downside to working in a tech team is that you can feel like you’re on the periphery of the action. Keep good staff in their technology jobs by taking them along for the ride – involve them in strategy meetings and include them when you celebrate wins. If you want them to be motivated, it’s important they feel like they have a shared goal with the rest of the company.

It’s about the package, not just salary

Attractive remuneration packages are a great way to entice blue-ribbon IT professionals to your team. Do your research to be within the range of what other companies are paying. Be ready to negotiate a pay rise and don’t underestimate the value of non-monetary enticements, such as training opportunities and personal development. Companies cannot afford to overlook non-salary issues.

Allow flexibility

There are potential benefits for organisations that are prepared to offer staff greater autonomy through flexible work hours, working remotely, or simply less direct supervision. So listen to your tech staff and find out whether this flexibility and independence will produce greater productivity and improve staff morale.

In today’s diverse workforce there is no place for one-size-fits-all retention policies. Business organisations need to adopt a flexible and personalised approach taking into account generational differences and the personal preferences of individual employees.

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