More Than a Salary Raise: 5 Retention Strategies to Make Your Employees Stay

While of course, a higher salary is an enticing offer for anyone, a job is ultimately much more than a figure in a bank account. There are many factors that contribute to employees’ career decisions. If you aren’t in a position to raise their salaries, or match the offers your employees receive from other companies, there are still several things you can do to avoid losing your team members, keep reading to find out about KWAN’s 5 retention strategies.


Is it all too often the case that your tech employees seem to be snatched away by other companies offering more competitive salaries? At KWAN, we understand that this can be very frustrating, especially if they are a valued member of your team. Watching them go can be hard, and finding a replacement can be even harder. And what’s more, according to reports from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), an employee’s total substitution expense is six to nine months’ salary. 

In the tech industry, experienced and competent professionals are in high demand, and companies are willing to offer very competitive salaries. So, if you want your tech team to remain loyal, strong, and untempted by higher salary proposals, have a read of our 5 retention strategies, below, to ensure you are doing everything you can to create an ideal working environment that is harder to walk away from! 



1. Work on a Company Culture


By working on your company culture, you have the ability to create a place where your employees feel valued, satisfied, and happy with their daily working life. This, in turn, will make it hard for them to leave when other companies come knocking at their doors. Building a strong workplace and team culture is essential, and one way to do this is through employing team building and group bonding strategies. We recommend taking a look at our article on 15 Team Building Activities That Will Improve Your Retention Strategy. By using such methods, your tech employees will get to feel a sense of belonging within the company, and will be much more likely to build lasting friendships with their co-workers. While to you, as a business owner or employer, whether or not your team is bonding might be lower down the list of priorities, we suggest paying more attention to this aspect of your company. After all, communication between colleagues will improve the overall success and progress of the company, as it creates more space for discussion and innovative ideas.

By making time for the organisation of non-work related activities, be it a company weekend break, a work party, or after-work drinks, these kinds of engaging and sociable events will stimulate active listening and bring people closer together, which is fundamental for a healthy company culture and happy employees.



2. Satisfy Employee Needs


You can easily satisfy your tech team’s needs in a non-monetary way, be it through flexible hours, remote work, or employee support systems. With more IT workers than ever reportedly feeling drained, overworked, and generally unmotivated, improving the way you support your employees goes hand in hand with ensuring their commitment to your business. Every person’s situation is different, and if you allow them to be open and to express a working style that fits best with their lifestyle, they will be grateful. Be sure to take your team’s mental health into consideration to avoid burnouts, and to establish a trusting and understanding employer/employee relationship. Read our article on What Tech Leaders Need to Know about Preventing Burnout

We recommend talking to your employees and actively listening to feedback regularly, not just about work tasks, but also about how they are getting on in general. If you are running a larger business, then perhaps set up a support system they can turn to within the company. 

At KWAN, we have a department of dedicated coach professionals whose job is to support our tech employees throughout their journey with us. 

That turned out to be a very important retention strategy, as it’s been helping us reduce our turnover!



3. Invest in Structured Career Plans


Employees expect to receive salary increases after working at your company for a certain time, especially if they are working hard and if their work is impacting the company results in a positive way. Therefore, a salary raise needs to reflect their efforts and level of responsibility in the company. 

So, you do have to take this into consideration when managing your tech team, but you can find a way to increase salaries, without increasing the company’s costs too much. It is important to remain transparent with your team, and to factor in the costs of looking after your employees in the right way. Instead of having to offer an emergency salary increase to stop an employee from leaving your company, which will result in unpredictable costs, be prepared to be one step ahead of the game.

If you offer your employees a career plan, with salary raises based on the time they stay at the company and achieved goals, it shouldn’t be a problem if another company offers them another salary – perhaps they won’t even be available to listen to another company’s proposal. And they will know you are trustworthy, and their salary will continue to grow if they continue to work the best they can. 

One of the best ways for you to increase your tech employee salaries without compromising the company’s profits is through bonuses and commissions. If you have a solid structure in place, then not only do your employees earn a higher income if the company’s results are very good (bonus) or if they do a great job achieving predefined milestones (commissions), your employees will also work really hard throughout the year to make sure they qualify for such rewards. It is vital that your employees are well educated in the how, when and why they can receive bonuses and commissions, as this will drive them forward while driving the success of your company forward in the process. 



4. Provide the Right Incentives


Bonuses, commissions, and salary raises are not the only way to encourage your tech team, and to keep them committed to your company. After all, the effectiveness of raises and bonuses to motivate employee performance is often short-lived, according to “Entrepreneur” magazine. After a few short months, the positive impact of a raise can fade, which also reduces the effect a raise has on employee motivation.

There are other small ways you can help out your employees, without giving them a salary raise. While sometimes a pat on the back for a job well done is all it takes, we suggest introducing things like paid lunches, work dinners or team weekends away into your tech company. Every business owner knows that bonuses and commissions are well appreciated by employees, but you can also focus on the little perks, which can be a subtle way to keep your workers loyal. 

Perhaps you pay for the taxi home if they work past a certain hour, or there is free barista coffee and fresh croissants in the morning when they get to work. It might sound simple, but these things can really help to brighten up someone’s day. There are all kinds of different ways that a tech business can introduce improvements – even if it is as simple as pizza on a Friday! 



5. Recruit Right


And lastly, this one is to bear in mind while going forward and hiring new employees. If you start off with a recruitment method which prioritises workplace value, commitment, and you promote growth within the company, then new employees will choose your company with the mindset of staying for a long time.

How can we, at KWAN, make this task a lot easier for you?

With the collaboration of an experienced outsourcing partner, make sure to show right from the start, the benefits of working at your company in the long run, so that your employees will be less likely to leave.

Moreover, count with our team of People Manager to ensure your employees are taken care of in the best way possible, while you can continue to focus on the development and success of your business.

Have a look at our website and, together, let’s start accessing the needs of your tech team!