The most effective way to meet your staffing needs is to hire good performers and then retain them. In the IT industry, both parts of that are tough: There are lots of people with superficial knowledge of technology but fewer with real expertise. And there’s lots of demand for staff with real expertise, so top employees know they’ve always got the option of taking a new position somewhere else. In order to keep your best employees, you need to make sure they continue to find their jobs rewarding.
The bottom-line reward for many employees is simply their bottom line. Salary surveys are published in the technical press and by technical recruiters, so your staff will know if they’re being fairly paid and what kind of increase they can achieve if they leave. So it’s important that you provide competitive financial rewards, starting with base salary and an annual increase that bumps pay to keep up with inflation and industry trends. In some industries, bonuses and stock options may be routinely expected. Other financial rewards include retirement plans, insurance coverage, and paid time off.
Most technical staff enjoy working with current technology, so make sure they have the opportunity to develop new technical skills each year. This means letting people work on different projects; tempting as it is to keep the “expert” assigned to their current project, let them move to a new project. You’ll still be able to ask them questions, which you can’t do if they get too bored and move to another firm. Also budget for your staff to take training, and don’t limit training to technologies you have immediate plans to use.
Make sure staying with your company long term aligns with your talent’s career goals. Don’t assume what those goals are; make a discussion of goals part of the year-end review process. Create a development plan that addresses the employee’s wishes, whether that means they want to become a technical expert, they want to understand the business better, or they want to develop leadership skills and move out of the individual contributor role.
Before you can retain top IT talent, you need to hire top IT talent. InReach IT Solutions has connections to a deep pool of IT workers who can meet your needs. Contact us to learn how we can help you hire workers you’ll want to retain.