Retention and innovation
The tech industry is no stranger to talent shortage, and with studies forecasting this shortage increasing and extending well into 2030, companies would be wise to prioritise retaining their people.
Retention plays a critical role in managing the ability to innovate through capacity and skill, but also impacts risk and morale. The IP and unique contextual knowledge vested into your people is valuable for the purposes of business continuity. Great retention within technology teams requires deliberate leadership focus on workplace culture, growth and development, interesting work and competitive remuneration.
A key tool in retaining people and inspiring the best from them is consistent and personal communication. Today’s workforce generally wants to be kept in the loop as to the direction of the division or organisation. They want to be heard, and to have a say.
- Make yourself available to address questions
Host “ask me anything” (AMA) sessions where you address any questions and concerns. These questions can also be sent anonymously.
- Remain relatable
Updates from execs and senior managers should be delivered colloquially in the person’s own style. The goal is to remain relatable and approachable.
- Adopt a multi-channel format
This includes tactics such as using Slack, Email, Microsoft Streams as well as Workplace. Multi-channel formats ensure employees can interact with whatever mechanism they prefer.
- Create a sharing culture
Encourage a culture of sharing and recognition through frequent communications that go out on channels (including news, updates, professional accomplishments, personal milestones and social content).
- Show transparency around tough questions
It is important to encourage people to ask difficult questions, and then deal with them openly where it makes sense to do so. Ensure that middle-management can answer these questions too, creating alignment in message, but also empowering them.
- Walk the floor
Walking the floor is one of the most powerful tools. Make sure leaders are available to people, and are pro-active about creating opportunities to interact frequently. This usually means finding good excuses to check in.
A culture of trust
Ask yourself these questions when considering your communication habits:
- When was the last time you communicated with all your reports (direct and indirect) for a non-operational reason?
- Do your people feel they can ask you anything at any time?
- How responsive are you to questions and comms from lower level staff (within the hour, same day, same week)?
These tips and questions will help keep lines of communication open and foster a culture of trust and affinity. While these ideas and tactics focus on the high calibre technology talent sector, they can be applied to any industry.
Retain your best people and inspire the best from them
Retention plays a critical role in managing the ability to innovate through capacity and skill, but also impacts risk and morale. The IP and unique contextual knowledge vested into your people is valuable for the purposes of business continuity.
Great retention within technology teams requires deliberate leadership focus on workplace culture, growth and development, interesting work and competitive remuneration.
Read more on our ideas and tactics for retaining our best talent.