As of 2016, tech industry turnover rate was 560,250 professionals per month, reaching a ten year high in the United States. With no sign attrition will naturally decrease, organizations are compelled to consider hiring and retention strategies that prevent the expensive turnover of their technical assets. The following strategies are those that achieve the best results.
On the surface, the decision between direct hire or contract employees might appear to have no bearing on your employee retention strategies. However, hiring an IT professional as a direct hire employee when the position should be contract can actually trigger employee attrition.
The most common reason IT professionals search for or take a new job indicates the subtle influence employment type can have on turnover. According to a Spiceworks survey, 69% of IT professionals leave their job to advance their IT skills. How many of those IT workers leave because of their own evolving technical interests versus a lack of sustainable technical challenges for them from the start? The exact number is hard to gauge, but the problem can be lessened by giving careful consideration to which positions are made direct hire and which are contract.
For example, if a position only requires a circumscribed skillset or does not provide many opportunities for technical growth, companies are often better off hiring IT consultants. That way, they can get the best performance out of a candidate while maintaining control over unexpected attrition. Contracts can always be renewed to meet ongoing needs. Plus, consultants are less likely to leave a position before a contract expires.
Strong employee engagement often corresponds with higher employee retention rates. Tech employees who are energized by their daily challenges and work environment are less likely to seek out other opportunities. Yet companies cannot leave that level of engagement up to chance in the current candidate market. Management teams needs to be proactive about how they interact with IT professionals if they want to limit their employee turnover.
Gartner employee engagement studies show that managers who practice these habits are more likely to have a higher percentage of engaged employees:
The work of lowering employee attrition rates starts long before you hire an IT professional. The sourcing and screening process are indispensable to finding candidates from the get-go who will remain with your company for a longer tenure. The exact strategies will vary between companies based on their industry and culture, but the following tactics continue to prove successful for top tech companies:
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