<i>Dear Workforce</i> How Can We Reduce Turnover In Our IT Department

July 18, 2001

Dear Workforce:

We're having trouble retaining our IT staffers. How could we convince them to remain with us?

- HR executive, Utilities, Kuala Lumpur

A Dear Kuala Lumpur Exec:

There are a number of different methods for retaining IT staff. The two methods that often are most effective are:

Financial retention tools. Offer performance and/or time-based rewards that encourage your IT staff to remain with the organization. The milestones typically revolve around project deadlines, implementation of new systems, achievement of pre-determined performance levels, etc. The time-based awards simply provide remuneration for staying with the organization through a particular date, regardless of whether performance milestones have been achieved. The organization will benefit more from the performance-oriented approach than the time-oriented approach. Also, make sure that the payouts are back-loaded; otherwise, participants will take the money and run.

Job design tools. Our experience suggests that IT professionals often are as motivated by the challenge of the job and the innovation of the technology they are working with as they are by additional compensation. Consequently, it might be useful to develop some type of rotation program that offers all your IT staff the opportunity to work on new projects and use different technology on a somewhat regular basis. This would allow them to feel that their roles are flexible and that they are staying on the cutting edge technologically.

SOURCE: Mitch Stern, Deloitte & Touche, human capital group, Los Angeles, Calif., April 4, 2001.

LEARN MORE: See, "A Look at Google's Vital Signs," on why the company continually receives a flood of good applicants.

The information contained in this article is intended to provide useful information on the topic covered, but should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion. Also remember that state laws may differ from the federal law.

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