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How Is The Tech Industry Workforce Really Feeling?

Tech industry workers are feeling uncertain about their job security and are considering leaving their jobs due to poor management, disorganization, and a lack of perks and benefits, according to the Beamery Talent Index (Seventh Edition).

The survey, which was conducted across the UK, US and Nordics, found that 49% of tech sector respondents had been laid off or made redundant in the past year, with 54% expressing concern that they would be made redundant at their current company.

Of those who said they were concerned, their top reasons were the current economic conditions adding pressure to their organizations (40% said this). A lack of transparency from senior management was cited as a reason for concern by 27% of respondents, while 28% reported a reduction in workload.

However, 27% of those who were concerned about job security said that it had encouraged them to take training courses or upskill, which is higher than the average across all sectors. 33% reported that this had made them more likely to search for another job (vs 29% across the board), while 31% said their motivation had decreased and their work quality had suffered.

Considering their options... 

While 72% of tech industry respondents across our surveyed markets said they were quite or extremely happy at their current organization (higher than average of 64%), a massive 63% of tech sector respondents said they were considering leaving their job in the next 12 months, citing better pay at other places of interest and a lack of salary increases as their top reasons for wanting to find a new role.

And, even in a challenging economy, 82% said they were confident they would be able to find a new job in the current environment (vs 72% across all sectors), with around a third saying they would expect to secure one within 3 months.

What tech talent is looking for

Flexible or remote working options were also important to tech workers, with 29% citing this as a top priority when applying for a job. 29% of tech sector respondents said that it was currently mandated that they worked in the office every day of the week, lower than the overall average of 42%. Just 11% said they are completely free to work where they please.

But 48% of tech sector employees said that they were feeling pressure from their employer to come into the office more often.

The issue of pay transparency was also highlighted, with 32% of tech industry respondents saying that it was essential to know the pay range of a role before applying for it. Another 43% said they would be much more likely to apply for the position if they gave this information, while 13% said they would be slightly more likely to apply.

But, while 40% said it’s very clear to anyone applying what they would receive (salary-wise) should they be successful in applying for a role, 19% said their company did not disclose this information.

Retaining and engaging tech sector employees

A massive 70% of people working in the tech sector (vs 56% in all sectors) said they had left a job in the past due to unhappiness or unfulfillment at the company, and later gone on to regret it. If you are an employer in this space, there is clearly an opportunity to engage staff that might leave for the “wrong” reasons.

In terms of retaining talent, creating opportunities for upskilling was seen as important, with 61% of all respondents expressing interest in learning new skills at their current workplace. This number increases to 73% amongst tech sector workers.

With this in mind, it’s disheartening that only 27% said their organization had plenty of plans/processes in place that give employees the opportunity to learn new skills.

Compared to other sectors, it seems like talent mobility is reasonably common in the tech world. That said, less than half (41%) of tech sector respondents felt that their employer was currently set up to, or willing, to support them moving into a new role within their organization that complemented their existing skills. 44% said it was a possibility they could be supported into a new role, but they would need to push for it. Helping talent move around within your organization (perhaps via a Talent Marketplace) is an ideal way to keep people engaged, stop them leaving, and meet new hiring demands as skills needs change.

We also found that a significant number of tech organizations are not creating a culture of inclusion, with 34% of respondents saying they felt discriminated against in some way in their current organization. Of those who felt discriminated against, 28% cited their race, 27% their gender, and 27% their social class. 28% said it was due to their working style – perhaps alluding to the recent return-to-office mandates that quite clearly don’t suit everyone.

Overall, better communication and transparency from management, along with offering more opportunities for learning and development and flexible working options, could be effective methods of keeping tech talent engaged and retaining employees in the industry... and offer useful insights to those in other industries keen to fill technical skills gaps.

Download the Beamery Talent Index report here.