Both employees and businesses have suffered tremendously over the past two years. While mass resignations have slowed down, people still care about their work environment and are more open to new opportunities. People seeking jobs want more flexibility and are looking for companies who value diversity and actively implement policies that include all people.
What does it look like to support current and future employees in the context of shifting workplace expectations? How can you make your business attractive to job-seekers with unlimited options? I sought out the expertise of three tech industry leaders who have created a positive work environment despite changing consumer attitudes to answer these questions. They were both insightful and compelling in their responses.
These are three ways you can improve your workplace culture and take care of your staff to avoid attrition.
1. “Rethink recruitment.” Crystal Crump, LaunchCode’s Managing Director of Company Relationships
It is common to post the same job listings and job boards year after year when hiring for your company. This method may get you qualified candidates but it might not result in the best candidates.
Crystal Crump believes that HR should rethink job descriptions and diversify their talent streams in order to solve the problem. Your most skilled hires might not be fresh graduates of college with a degree or certificate in Computer Science. A mom at home who has just returned to tech could be your most qualified candidate.
Crump says that job postings should focus on skills. She says that if you are rethinking your job qualifications and removing outdated credentials from the market, it will open up your positions to qualified, driven candidates who have the ability to learn on the job and grow with your company.
Crump suggests being creative in your search for talent and prioritizing diversity. Partnering with organizations like various Chambers of Commerce (Asian and Hispanic), etc. She notes that Black Data Processing Professionals (Black Data Processing Professionals), Urban Leagues, local LGBTQ Tech groups and women in technology groups “you increase your talent pool and actively engage in inclusive recruitment.”
It is becoming more difficult to find and retain quality tech workers, with candidates being able to work in high-tier companies anywhere in the world. You may be able to find the best talent by being creative in how and where you search.
2. “Make tech work to tech.” Stacy Bliek is VP Marketing at Integrity Staffing Solutions
It might seem that everyone assumes that tech companies will embrace the latest technology for the benefit and well-being of their employees. Stacy Bliek has found that this is not always the case. Tech businesses, like other companies, can face challenges that could, ironically enough, be solved by the right technology.
Let’s take communication as an example. Bliek says that teams want to be connected more easily and quickly, especially for hybrid or remote teams. Without the right “Swiss Army platform of choice”, this is not always possible.
Bliek notes that employees are seeking more options and a wider range of ways to connect, align, collaborate, celebrate, and so on. “The overwhelming theme is the desire for employees to be able to choose according to their preferences, the nature of the task or the topic they are discussing.”
This issue can be solved by upgrading tech to support employees. Every day, tech workers must raise the bar in their work for their company, and when possible, for the clients or end users. They need software and systems that meet their needs in order to reach their full potential. They don’t need to be limited by inefficient legacy systems or stifling workflows.
What are the best places for tech companies to start their internal tech transformations? Bliek suggests looking for tech solutions that encourage connectivity and integration. Bliek claims that “everything working in lockstep” decreases the amount of time needed to manage administrative tasks. This “thereby increases time available for good work and discussing big ideas.”
The more tech-enabled and not-trapped employees feel, the better.
3. “Focus on diversity and inclusion more.” Nyasha Gutsa is the founder and CEO of Billy
Companies’ diversity, equity and inclusion plans (DEI) are receiving a lot of attention. Nyasha Gutsa says that DEI initiatives are a frequent topic on executive agendas. They’re also discussed at conferences. Even though this is true, many tech companies in the early and late stages of their development are not embracing diversity across departments. This is concerning as many employees value diversity in their workplaces.
Gutsa has seen firsthand the importance of diversity. He says, “At Billy we have observed that our employees value an environment that supports all employees from any background, race or gender, and whatever political affiliation.”
Gutsa says that inclusion doesn’t only concern the composition of a team, but also the access it has to senior executives. He explains that the worst thing for employees is to make them feel like they work for their company, and that their contributions aren’t important. This leads to silent quitting.
To encourage a broad, inclusive mindset, it is important to listen to employees and respond to their feedback. Employees who feel heard in one-on-one meetings or facilitated sessions are more likely to feel connected to the outcome of what they have contributed.
Tech industry is all about innovation, speed, testing everything and moving quickly. Tech companies need to have the same work ethic to improve their culture and processes in order to attract and retain talent. Your team is the best investment you could make in your company.