Human Touch for Tech Talent Retention: “Thank You” Works!

November 14, 20168:35 am3227 views

A human connection as simple as saying “thank you” can make a real business impact. According to the survey of more than 650 respondents by Appirio, a global services company, compensation isn’t the foremost driving factor in employee satisfaction.

In fact, 60% of respondents said when analyzing a job offer, knowing whether the staff feel appreciated by management is most important, while only 4% were most concerned with knowing how often employees were evaluated for raises.

“Recruiting tech talent is a problem plaguing the C-suite: 90% of emp14loyers say finding the right talent is a primary issue facing the executive team,” said Harry West, Head of Worker Experience Solutions at Appirio.

“Our survey found that appreciation, connectedness, and emotional safety all outrank compensation as important factors in career decision-making. Employee engagement can’t be solved by simply showering workers with raises and bonuses — companies must be dedicated to providing transparency, support, and technologies that keep high-end tech talent happy.”

The report on ‘The Human Touch for Tech Talent: Employee Retention could be as simple as “Thank You”, highlights sentiments from the voice of the worker. It is based on research conducted by Appirio through the SnapApp platform in May of 2016.

It found workers want a boss who acts as an advocate (33%) above such aspects as: a clear path to a promotion (22%), receiving regular performance reviews and feedback (17%), earning incentive-based bonuses (12%), or even being beloved by senior executives (12%).

Other key findings include:

  • 55% of workers value receiving a “thank you” from their managers for a project well done, while only 8% would feel disappointed if the same project didn’t result in a cash reward.
  • 45% of respondents said they spend at least all morning, if not most of the day, navigating outdated technologies.
  • Most respondents (47%) value open and transparent communication over any other “work language,” including group recognition (19%), advanced responsibilities (15%), individualized attention (10%). or tokens of appreciation (8%).

See: 7 Keys to Attracting and Retaining Talent Globally

While companies may try to lure prime candidates with outlandish perks, generous bonus structures, and overinflated salaries, what workers actually want may be much simpler — and considerably less expensive.

While recruiters may think focusing on total compensation is the best way to win over a prized candidate, workers would rather assess the chemistry between their prospective manager and the team and for good reason; a manager can make or break the employee experience.

While fair market pay and benefits get the candidate to accept an offer, the dynamic of the manager-employee relationship may be a better indicator of employee satisfaction.

When asked to reflect on the qualities of their worst bosses, it wasn’t the penny-pinchers who were cheap with raises and stingy with promotions who suffered. Rather, emotionally distant and uncommunicative managers were recalled as the worst leaders.

Workers said the worst traits a manager could display were: failing to give the worker credit for a job well done (32%), rarely giving praise or expressing support (28%), failing to help them navigate the road to a promotion (24%), and viewing them as a replaceable cog in the machine (13%). Just 3% of workers felt the worst thing a boss could do was refuse to give bonuses or raises.

Managers go to great lengths to retain and re-energize qualified but disengaged talent, typically offering traditional incentives such as bigger bonuses, raises, and title promotions. But assuming a worker is paid a fair market rate, bonuses and other cash incentives are only a temporary fix to the deeper and harder-to solve problem of establishing meaningful personal connections in the digital age.

Also read: The Correlation between Benefits and Employee Retention

Image credit: gig.com

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