The tech industry is one of the fastest-growing sectors of the US labor market; and as is often the case with industries that experience fast growth, tech companies are grappling to fill their talent pools as tech positions outnumber the current human resources.
North Kansas City is a prime example of this. The city has a budding startup tech industry that’s poised to grow further in the next years. In 2019, the Kansas City Area Development Council (KCADC) reports that 3,918 technology companies operated in the area and created approximately 100,782 jobs (nearly one in ten workers in the city work for a tech company). In the same year, the KC tech industry contributed $12 billion to the local economy, which is about 10% of its overall gross.
Despite these impressive numbers, the local tech industry is still short on tech workers. Missouri recently addressed this need by launching a program that provides free IT training to workers who were laid off due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
While waiting for this and other similar programs to bear fruit, companies can launch programs of their own to attract top talent to join their organizations. Here are some examples:
1. Provide a healthy work environment.
There’s a reason why Google, Facebook, and Amazon invested millions in building headquarters with biophilic architecture, game rooms, and outdoor working spaces. They’re not only for aesthetic value but also for the employees’ well-being. The tech industry can be very demanding physically and mentally. A few minutes spent playing ping-pong or strolling in a garden, however, can help alleviate their stress.
Since productivity is directly tied to a workforce’s collective well-being, it would be wise to also invest in things like commercial landscaping, massage chairs, and recreation rooms. If given the choice between two, equal-paying employers in North Kansas City and only one of them offers outdoor workspaces and a game room, a recruit will likely choose the company that offers both.
2. Offer attractive perks and benefits.
Competitive salaries with benefits packages that match a talent’s long-term goals will go a long way to attracting the best people in the industry. Young professionals may be attracted by a free condominium or vehicle package, for example, while parents might be drawn to housing assistance for a single-detached residence that’s only a few minutes away from a high-quality elementary school.
3. Offer leadership roles.
Top talents usually seek meaning in their work. Competitive salaries and incentive packages are strong attractions, but if they don’t feel fulfilled by their job, they might look for other options sooner than expected. One way to meet their personal goals could be to offer them a leadership position. Putting them in a supervisory capacity will allow them to practice their leadership skills, help their subordinates realize their potential, and show the magnitude of the impact they can make if they stay with your organization.
Money may be an important factor in attracting the best talent in tech, but it is by no means the only criteria. A good work environment, opportunities for growth, and customized benefits are just some of what can attract the best people to your company.