How Companies Are Using Career Pathing to Attract Top Tech Talent

Are you suddenly seeing a lot more interest from your company’s leadership in recruiting and building a talent pipeline for the future?

You’re not alone.

According to Gartner’s Emerging Risk Survey, talent shortage is now the top emerging risk facing organizations. Executives are painfully aware of how a lack of necessary talent – especially tech talent –  impacts a business’s ability to keep up with the rapid pace of business change and the digitalization of their industries. And they’re equally aware of what a huge competitive disadvantage this can be in serving their customers and growing their companies.   

Since you’re already aggressively recruiting on behalf of your company, you might wonder what else you can do to proactively build a pipeline for your company’s talent needs. And Michael Hoehne, Chief People Officer at AHEAD, thinks it’s time to look inside your company to nurture the talent you’ll need tomorrow.

“It’s easy enough to say that you can go out and find new tech talent when you need it,” says Hoehne. “But ultimately, that can be expensive and exhausting for tech companies. Niche industries are not huge, so recruiters and hiring managers can see a lot of the same names come through. Career-pathing provides an alternative way to prepare people for taking on new roles in the industry.”

Here’s a look at three reasons Hoehne thinks companies will be investing in the career trajectory of their in-demand tech employees:

[Related: How to Compete With Silicon Valley for Tech Talent]

Employer Benefits of Career-Pathing

Investing in career-pathing is a two-way street that is just as good for employers as it is for employees. Consider these three benefits companies can realize almost immediately:

Higher Employee Lifetime Value (LTV)

You’ve already invested time, resources, and money recruiting and hiring your current employees. By helping employees explore a second career in your company – growing in their contributions as they grow in their skills – you’ll see a greater Employee Lifetime Value from that investment.

“These are people you’ve spent a lot of time and effort attracting to your company,” says Hoehne. “Once you’ve made that investment, why not provide a path for advancement so it becomes attractive to stay?”

Increased Access to Diverse Talent

The race for recruiting candidates of diverse demographics and backgrounds is on, with companies like Deloitte, McKesson, and Starbucks battling for top tech talent. Offering clear career-pathing support can help you grow this talent in-house.

“It’s a well-known shortfall in the tech community that we lack diverse minority and female talent,” says Hoehne. “Bringing people from different backgrounds into your company early on in their careers and providing the opportunities they need to grow with career-pathing can help you build the diverse team you need to be successful in today’s digital landscape.”

Greater Identity and Competitive Advantage

Another powerful benefit of supporting career-pathing for employees is that the increased retention creates a well of talent that builds a reputation with your clients. Your company loses some of its identity and prestige with every employee that leaves because your customers are starting over with a new relationship. Creating an ecosystem in which employees stay, grow, and continue to deliver to clients builds familiarity and relationship, which in turn strengthens your company’s identity.

“Today, talented people will not hesitate to move on to a new organization for a better opportunity,” says Hoehne. “This can be a real detractor for clients who have a good experience with your company and want to work with the same people on your team. I’ve seen many big consulting firms lose that identity because there’s so much turnover, and those employees take those relationships and proprietary knowledge with them.”

[Related: 8 Ways to Attract Tech Talent to Your Non-Tech Company]

It can be challenging to shift from a just-in-time approach to filling roles to a truly strategic approach that nurtures talent for a future need, but it’s worth it. Consider what you can do today to help your company stay prepared for the increased competition and technical needs of tomorrow.

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