Hiring boom adds pressure to firms’ retention plans

New research finds that 43% of CIOs say they are losing more IT staff to other opportunities than three years ago.

  • 43% of CIOs say they are losing more IT staff to other opportunities than three years ago
  • 68% of CIOs plan to increase the number of contract workers to plug skills gap

London, 21 September 2017 – New research revealed by recruitment specialist Robert Half Technology UK suggests that the IT and technology market is changing with average permanent employee tenure falling.  According to Chief Information Officers (CIOs), an increase in job opportunities on the market (48%), stagnant career prospects (43%) and a desire for more diverse career experiences (39%) all contribute to increased levels of voluntary employee turnover. High workloads and stress (27%) and a poor work–life balance (18%) also feature as top reasons for employees to look for jobs elsewhere.

As demand for technology talent continues to rise, businesses are facing a skills shortage of experienced IT professionals, with three in 10 (30%), struggling to find candidates with the requisite skills to do the job. Interestingly, 68% of CIOs said they plan to increase the number of contract professionals over the next 12 months, as they look to quickly fill gaps. This approach is most prevalent in IT security, networking and software/application development.

‘As the technology landscape continues to evolve at a rapid rate, savvy technology professionals are looking for opportunities where they can continue to be challenged and add to their expertise,’ said Neil Owen, Director at Robert Half Technology UK. ‘To compete effectively in the current job market, not only do businesses need to offer attractive salary packages but they need to sell candidates on the opportunity it provides their career. Outlining the career development opportunities, offering an exciting business model, staying at the forefront of innovation and using the latest technologies are all valuable factors for both attracting and retaining key employees.’

Employees are typically happiest during their first year in a role. To maintain this, businesses must look to build an environment that encourages a good work–life balance, creates worthwhile work, and enables staff to feel appreciated and accomplished in their roles.

‘The departure of a single employee can turn departments upside down, so imagine the chasm left behind when multiple professionals, from the same department, leave a company,’ continued Owen. ‘Advanced skills and knowledge are difficult and expensive to replace so going the extra mile to ensure employees feel fulfilled, valued and have a clear path to achieving their goals, will be key to retaining the best talent.'

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Notes to editors

The annual study was developed by Robert Half UK and is conducted by an independent research firm. The study is based on more than 100 responses from CIOs and IT and technology executives from companies across the UK. The results segmented by company size, sector and geographic location.

About Robert Half

Robert Half is the world’s first and largest specialised recruitment consultancy and member of the S&P 500. We have once again been named to FORTUNE’s “World’s Most Admired Companies®” list and remains the top-ranked staffing firm (February 2020). Founded in 1948, the company has over 300 offices worldwide providing temporary, interim and permanent recruitment solutions for accounting and finance, financial services, technology, legal and administrative professionals. Robert Half offers workplace and jobseeker resources at roberthalf.co.uk and twitter.com/roberthalfuk.