Why your employer brand is the key to attracting and retaining tech talent

Tech talent is in demand and they know it. So they look for employers who’ll woo them.

Thing is, a good salary alone is not enough to do that. In fact, tech talent often places a lot of value on other kinds of benefits like culture, development and flexibility, which means convincing these sought-after candidates to join your team will mean thinking carefully about what you can offer them to stand your business out from the very crowded crowd.

So the question is not simply ‘how much money can I throw at these people’.

The trick is to pay attention to what sort of benefits might genuinely interest them and how you can communicate them clearly through your employer brand.

Here are three big ways to do exactly that:

01. Offer learning opportunities

For today’s tech candidates, learning is one of the most critical aspects of their career development process: after all, the more they learn, the more valuable they become. For that reason, you should consider investing heavily in excellent employee training. You can and should encourage your tech team to attend networking groups, classes, or industry conferences that can promote their professional development. Even better, create your own bespoke internal blended learning programmes that allow your team some flexibility to customise when and how they learn best.

Employees should also be encouraged to learn from – and to teach – each other. For example, a senior data scientist, who is an expert in using languages like SQL, could be incentivised to transfer their knowledge to co-workers. This enriches both your learners and your internal teachers, as studies show that teaching is one of the best ways to solidify learning. Could your learning and development team can help set this up by creating a forum for cross-training sessions and highlighting opportunities for your tech team to share their experience?

You could also consider providing educational financing options; your team will love it, plus you will reap the benefit of keeping up to date with new industry standards as they arise – not to mention that you’ll be building a strong relationship with universities and other educational institutions, which may help feed back into your recruitment as well.

Not sure where to start with offering tech skills training? Check out Thinkful, a company that offers full-time and part-time courses for employees to learn in-demand tech skills and provides its students with a supportive peer network. Students are also exposed to industry-experienced mentors, academic success managers, and career coaches.

However you provide your learning opportunities, make sure you are thinking about how to tell your teams’ career development success stories as part of your employer brand content strategy.

02. Promote your friendly work culture

It’s a cliche, but it’s also true: Tech professionals like to feel comfortable and they like to feel valued. And from a more commercial perspective when they love their working environment, they work harder. So creating and promoting a great work environment will not only help you retain current employees but also will make you more attractive to prospects. Be good to your team and they’ll spread the word about your culture naturally, letting their network know your business is a great place to further their careers.

Once again, salaries, bonuses and benefits are all good things to have in place, but when it comes to tech talent, these employees also want to feel like a part of a big family. What can you do differently to make sure you are fostering the right sort of environment in your team – and how can you communicate this to the outside world?

03. Offer remote and flexible working

If you don’t yet offer flexible working options, you need to start doing so soon. Most companies have proven during COVID-19 that remote working is completely possible – and tech teams in particular favour this approach.  Web developers, for example, often prefer to work from home since their responsibilities don’t strictly need them to be in the office.

Remote working allows your tech talent – and indeed all your employees – more autonomy and flexibility with their schedules, as well as less time wasted with commuting and more of a work-life balance. Plus, these days it’s considered more of a hygiene factor than a perk, and you may find many of your competitors already offer this option. It’s beneficial to the company in other ways, too – for example, it could help you lower costs and increase productivity; and, if you’re able to hire remote workers from different countries, it could also expand your perspective. You may gain valuable insights into different local cultures, holiday patterns and customer preferences.

While hiring remote employees has its fair share of challenges, you can overcome them by setting up the right processes and systems, and providing the right internal training to make sure your virtual teams can thrive. If you need some inspiration about how to get this right, check out our blog on how to use behavioural science to get the most out of your virtual teams.

Finally, don’t forget to communicate about your forward-thinking approach in your employer brand content. Get it right, and you should have more tech talent interested in coming to work with you in no time!

If you have any questions about how to set up great internal blended learning programmes, or about how to communicate with tech talent via your employer brand, drop us a line.

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