How to attract and retain top tech talent in a competitive job market

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Photo by Marten Bjork on Unsplash

The coronavirus has impacted many fields and industries. One change is the increase in demand for tech workers. Since organizations need workers to scale their business, the job market has become much more competitive. As a result, acquiring top talent has become a challenge these days.

Employers will need to come up with strategies to not only attract new prospects, but also retain existing employees. The following tips will help employers stay relevant in a tough job market:

Be Flexible and Let Employees Work from Home

Flexibility is a perk that can help employees:

  • find work-life balance,
  • achieve autonomy and empowerment,
  • save time and money from their commute,
  • and spend more time with their family.

For employers, remote work has become the new norm and companies who embrace it have a competitive edge. When implemented correctly, it can boost productivity. Additional benefits are:

  • company attractiveness,
  • employee satisfaction,
  • retention rate,
  • and cost savings regarding office space and amenities.

Make Learning a Part of Your Brand

To engage your workers, you must make learning a part of your company’s brand. It’s never too early—or too late—to invest in your employees. For tech workers, learning new skills, knowledge, and behaviors are essential. You can provide or sponsor on-site training, online courses, and/or coding bootcamps to help them master new skills.

With a tuition reimbursement program, employees can enroll in workshops and attend conferences. Equipping them with in-demand programming skills will enable your company to continue to innovate. Coding schools are also a great option for learning cloud computing skills. Online coding bootcamp allows aspirants to pick up AWS skills, which are key to helping your company take big strides.

At bootcamps like Coding Dojo and Metis, students receive hands-on support from their instruction team. Learners have the luxury to learn from home and pick up the material at their own pace. Given the students put in time (20 hours per week), they can ramp up and become self-sufficient developers. Whether you’re an individual or a corporation, these schools offer curriculum ranging from machine learning to web development. Lastly, these schools can provide students with the connections and opportunities to stand out from the rest.

Improve Employees’ Well-Being at the Workplace

With great responsibility comes pressure and stress. Hence, many companies are seeking to improve employee wellness at the workplace. Google, for example, provides free catering and gym classes to their employees. Other companies, like Samsung, provide spa sessions as a means to help their employees relax.

Ultimately, the perks that you offer should follow your company’s brand and values. It doesn’t have to be grandiose and it can be something as simple as monthly massages. The purpose of perks is to make employees feel cared for and comfortable at the workplace. This can maximize employee happiness, keep existing talent from leaving, and help sell your company to future prospects.

Provide Positive Feedback to Make Workers Feel Valuable

When employees feel like they’re not being cared for or listened to, it can cause them to lose morale. Don’t let that happen to your organization. Listen and encourage feedback whenever possible. When employees are unclear about the goals of the company, it will lead to a drop of productivity. Respect, clarity, and alignment are key elements that ensure energy is high and employees believe in what they’re doing. When employees feel like they’re part of a big family, they’ll work harder to achieve the company’s goals. As a consequence, this will lead better performance and results.

To make workers feel special, you can communicate with them on a personal level. Ask for their opinions and what you can do to make them more successful. This can help you identify areas for improvement. If you want to start with something simple, showing appreciation is a good start. It’s a simple yet effective way to express that they’re valued at your company.

Create an Environment Conducive to Growth

Everyone desires a job that’s meaningful. Offering a good salary may increase your chances of a prospect joining your company, but providing the individual with growth opportunities and a strong vision are what differentiates you from the rest. Promote employees when they’re ready and don’t make work-life monotonous. Provide training and personal development to help them improve their soft skills. If you work hard to make your prospects’ work-life meaningful at your company, they won’t think twice about joining your team.

Involve Tech-Savvy Workers in the Hiring Process

One way to attract talented people is to involve your engineering team in the hiring process. Hiring is as much an art as a science. As a result, you want as much data and signals as possible to know whether a person would be a good fit for your team. It’s cheaper to interview many candidates than to fire a bad hire. Thus, come up with a strong and replicable hiring process and trust your team to follow it. Another benefit of having your employees conduct interviews is that the interviewees can learn more about the people they will work with. A successful interview is when both parties gain something out of it.


Attracting and retaining tech workers gets tougher each day. To be successful, one must embrace changes and be willing to try new things. Go the extra mile to meet the needs of top talent. After all, they’re the ones who can take your company to the next level. So continue to improve and adapt so your company stays on top.

Guest post by Artur Meyster.

Artur is the CTO of Career Karma (YC W19), an online marketplace that matches career switchers with coding bootcamps. He is also the host of the Breaking Into Startups podcast, which features people with non-traditional backgrounds who broke into tech.

Find him on Twitter or LinkedIn.

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