Organisations need the ability to restructure to meet changes in the business and their operating environments. Most owners and managers of start-up to medium-sized organisations are aware of the problems of finding and retaining key technical staff with the required range of skills. There is an increasing demand for tech talent, and in many countries, increased difficulty in recruiting in-house staff from abroad; the two issues together compound the challenge of finding staff with the required skills an organisation requires to grow.

It is not uncommon to see organisations deploying short-term contractors or freelancers to address the skills gap. However, this strategy is unlikely to be sustainable in the longer term. This article will look at ways in which organisations may prefer to build a more permanent and resilient technical team.

You may consider offering training and promotion opportunities to internal staff with the potential to grow into roles.  If you wish to do this, an important question to ask is: can your employees see a clear progression path from their current role? If not, your best employees are likely to move elsewhere once an opportunity for progression presents itself.

Perhaps it is time to make sure you are making the best use of your existing employees. Here are some ideas:

  • Ask them, as part of your appraisal process or via feedback surveys, what they want from their careers, and decide whether you can give them this inside your organisation. If you can’t do this you are, at least, forewarned that they will probably be leaving sooner or later, or become a “quiet quitter” and plan for this.
  • Develop a plan for promotion from within your organisation/firm and clearly demonstrate that your organisation does promote from within
  • Build and actively manage a talent pool – Ensure your key tech talent knows that they are appreciated. Make sure they know what they need to do to move on in your organisation. Develop plans to help them acquire the skills that they’ll need.
  • Finally, can you encourage (or reward) your employees to identify external candidates either for employment, or for your talent pool?

The shortage of tech talent is unlikely to be resolved in the foreseeable future. Will your organisation be one of the ones that people want to work for? As always, I’d like to hear your thoughts about this.