Good engineers are hard to find, so when you have a talented employee on your staff who makes meaningful contributions to the organization, you must do what it takes to retain them for the long term. Every engineer has unique priorities, but here are some strategies you can use to keep your top performers on the job.
Develop Strong Onboarding Practices
The way in which an employee’s first few weeks go on the job will set the tone for their tenure. A bad onboarding experience can lead to prolonged negative feelings. Develop a comprehensive, formalized onboarding program that sets engineers up for success from day one. It should make them feel supported throughout their first 90+ days.
In today’s connected, mobile environment, engineers know that they can be productive any time of the day. Enforcing a strict 9 to 5 policy can cost you top talent if your competitors embrace flexible scheduling. You don’t have to allow them to work their own schedule, but do provide some options like flex time, telecommuting days throughout the month, job shares, etc. Professionals today feel stuck between their personal and professional lives, and they will be loyal to a company that gives them a little bit of breathing room.
Invest In Their Future (And Yours)
Engineers must keep their skills sharp. Many return to school to complete a second or even third advanced degree, and they want to work for organizations that support them in their development. Help talented employees see a future with your organization by offering tuition reimbursement, company-sponsored training, and cross-training opportunities. When you spot a talented engineer with leadership potential, incorporate development into their performance reviews, helping them to see the steps they need to take to climb the ladder with your company.
If your engineers only receive feedback during an annual salary review, you’re going to have retention issues. Today’s workers – especially younger employees – want to know how they are doing in real time. Monthly check-ins are necessary to let engineers know what they are doing well, and where they should focus on improving their skills. Actionable feedback will produce happier, more productive workers who feel they are on the right track.
Make Strong Hiring Decisions
Retention really begins in the hiring process. If you want to keep great people, you must be able to identify candidates who have the potential to grow with the organization. Hiring managers must not only focus on hard skills and experience, but also soft skills, personality and cultural fit.
If your company is looking to attract and retain top engineering talent, reach out to the expert recruiters at Selectek today. We can connect you with the professionals who will help drive your company towards the future.