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Invest in your tech workers – or they’ll move on: Survey

If your tech workers are important to you, you’d better invest in them if you want to keep them in your company and maintain engagement and productivity.

Keith MacKenzie
Keith MacKenzie

Passionate about human resources, employment, and business management, and an expert at sharing that expertise.

That’s the conclusion of a new survey of 1,200 US tech workers commissioned by Workable and learning management platform TalentLMS, which finds that nearly three quarters (72%) of employees working in tech/IT roles are thinking of leaving their jobs over the next year – far higher than the 55% of the overall US workforce.

That’s something you should be concerned about as an employer, so let’s look at why they’re thinking of leaving and what would compel them to stick around. It turns out that skills development, training and overall growth are high up the list of priorities for tech workers.

For instance, in the same survey, 91% want more training opportunities from their current employers.

And it’s not just training. When tech employees are making a career choice, salary and benefits are by and far the most important criteria when deciding who to work for, with 76% picking that as their top decider.

Workable’s Great Discontent survey echoes this sentiment as well, with 63.4% of US workers saying the top reason they’re open to new jobs is because of compensation.

As a tech employer looking to retain your staff, you also want to focus on a career path structure in your company. That’s because two out of five tech workers say the lack of career progression is the main reason they’re leaving their current job.

Three out of five (58%) also tagged skills development as their number-one motivator in choosing a new company. Likewise, three out of five (62%) say that more training and learning as a part of their job will make them more motivated at work.


To quote from the report: “Combined with L&D opportunities being one of the top criteria for selecting a job, the message is clear: training can help slow down the wave of resignations.”

When we’re seeing four million American workers quitting their jobs every month – including in August alone – it’s time for action. Employers need to step up their game with new recruitment strategies to compel their workers to stick around.

But there’s a bright side to all this

Texas A&M professor Dr. Anthony Klotz, who coined the now-famous term “The Great Resignation”, says these insights actually provide an opportunity for employers to get ahead of the problem of turnover.

“While the percentage of individuals thinking about resigning may be high, the good news for organizational leaders is that many of the top reasons that employees provided for wanting to leave are readily addressable,” says Anthony.

He emphasizes that investing in more opportunities for development and career advancement, greater flexibility, and boosting compensation and benefits are all things that can be quickly implemented in one’s own company as significant talent attractors.

And, he adds, keep that two-way street open with your workforce. For example, you can and should use employee surveys to better understand what’s expected of you as an employer.

“There is an opportunity here for companies to talk to their employees about these issues in the wake of the pandemic, and then trial or implement potential solutions.”

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