CorSource Blog

Expectations vs. Reality: Why Tech Pros Leave and How to Retain Them

by Valerie Ebinger on December 11, 2018 in Hiring Trends, Retention, Tech Industry, Technical Staffing

15-Second Overview:

  • A recent large study uncovered the reasons tech pros cite for leaving roles
  • The top reason was a lack of growth opportunities, something surveyed managers did not realize
  • In light of the data, increasing retention can happen by ensuring tech pro expectations meet a role’s realities


It’s natural for businesses to want happy employees who can enjoy work, be productive, and stay for the long haul. Despite this simple desire, a recent survey of over 5,000 respondents shows nearly half of companies struggle to retain their tech talent. Why is that the case, and how can changing your recruiting process improve employee longevity?


Understanding Today’s Tech Pros

34% of managers cited competing opportunities elsewhere as a top reason for losing talent. However, while talent may be leaving for another opportunity, that is often the result of a problem and not the problem itself. Consider that only 17% of managers cited lack of growth opportunities as a top reason for turnover, but that was the #1 reason tech pros cited for leaving. It’s time to get on the same page. If businesses can better match candidate and employee expectations with positions, talent is likely to stay longer.


Providing Growth Opportunities

A startling 49% of tech pros say they leave positions because of a lack of opportunities for growth and development. This illustrates a disconnect between their expectations when entering a role and the reality. Often, hiring managers focus only on the role at hand, its responsibilities, and if the candidate is qualified. While this is all relevant, tech pros are also vetting opportunities for long-term potential.

  • Show candidates and new employees clear career paths they can embark on from their new role. Let them know this isn’t just one job, but a series of roles that can get them where they want to be professionally.
  • Provide professional development opportunities by sponsoring tech pros interested in earning certifications, attending conferences, or taking a course at a local college. Ask them what they think would help further their career and put effort into providing that.
  • Be open-minded. A tech professional may value sitting in with a meetup group of peers in their niche twice a month and may need to get out of work early to make that happen. Offer the flexibility that allows them to do so.
  • Take special care with younger talent. Studies show the younger the tech professional the more focused they are on career growth, with 79% of millennials stating they want to find a new job in order to expand their skill set.


Upgrading Technology

Outside of growth, nearly one-third of IT pros cite their company’s use of old technology as another reason for leaving. It might feel cost prohibitive or difficult to update software and hardware in your business, but this can be overcome with proper planning that includes your tech pros. Ask them what programs they want to work with, and welcome their recommendations. Even if an update won’t happen for nine months, including your staff in the process can help them see you as a longer-term employer who values their opinion and can help them stay on the curve and keep up with their peers.


Cultivating a Culture

According to the 56% of companies who say they don’t have trouble retaining tech workers, their workplace culture is the biggest positive factor. This is important to understand, since providing career growth and cutting-edge technology can only go so far if housed in a negative or unhealthy environment. Create a healthy culture that matches the kind IT employees thrive in, show it off to candidates to make sure it meets their desires, and watch as engagement (and retention) increases.


Retaining Tech Pros

Increasing retention rates comes down to one mentality: matching an IT pro’s expectations to the reality of your open role and company. Mismatches here are what create shorter tenure, as talent looks elsewhere to fulfill their needs. It takes solid recruiting, strong communication, and hiring expertise to match the right people with the right roles, but that’s what CorSource does.


In need of tech talent suited to your open positions? Contact us today.


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