The 'Secret' to Attract and Retain Talent? The Top 4 Benefits IT Professionals Value the MostSeptember 15th, 2022
The benefits offered by your company can make the difference between being able to hire the IT professional your tech team needs or… keep endlessly searching the market.
Google, Apple, and Microsoft are some of the technology companies that stand out as the most eye-catching companies in the world. And you've probably wondered why that is. Why are these tech companies so appealing? The answer goes beyond the paycheck (which is very competitive). It's also about the commitment to corporate benefits for employees. Most of these companies allow remote work; have impressive retirement plans; give health insurance with full coverage; profit sharing; and models that provide the balance between work and personal life.
Does your company offer corporate benefits like the ones mentioned? If not, which ones should you start offering? Do corporate benefits have the same value for employees?
Before starting to do the math and figuring out how much it will cost you, let’s start from the beginning.
What are corporate benefits?
Corporate benefits are incentives for the real needs of employees, offering more possibilities than (just) a paycheck. These benefits attract and retain candidates and employees and, as a result, provide more productivity and high quality in the work performed in the company. Good pay and career progression are no longer enough to make a job look appealing. That's why, nowadays, many companies complement their compensation packages with surprising perks like free food or meditation classes.
Putting more effort into the company's culture and employer benefits is essential for a company that works with IT professionals - otherwise, you will lose them to another company that does.
Impressive benefits attract and help retain talent
When employees are happy and satisfied with the companies they work for, they're less likely to experience burnout. In addition, happy workers strengthen your employer's brand and attract more happy workers!
In 2022, TechRepublic magazine identified the top 12 tech companies that have generous employee benefits packages: Facebook; Salesforce; Google; Adobe; Tesla; Amazon; Intel; Dell Technologies; IBM; Reddit; Zillow, and Airbnb.
Why do they do it? According to the 2019 Hired Report - more than half of tech workers pointed out compensation and benefits as the biggest factor they consider when evaluating an offer or looking for a new job.
High wages are no longer enough to keep employees motivated and productive. Nowadays, employers must increase "non-wage incentives," which means better benefits and worker-friendly policies. And this is especially true in a market that has never been as competitive as it is now - the tech one.
Which benefits do IT professionals value the most?
Do you want to offer corporate benefits but don’t know where to start?
You don’t have to guess what IT professionals value the most when Reddit - the most popular social media channel among developers - gives you the answer. In order to understand the community’s preferences, Teamlyzer, a platform for company reviews specialized on the IT market, posted the question:
What corporate benefit do you value the most?
Four options were given:
Full remote work;
Freedom to choose when and where to work;
A 4-day week;
Unlimited vacation policy.
This question was answered by 1255 IT professionals. The most attractive option was full remote work (with 548 votes). Freedom to choose when and where to work was the second most chosen option (with 331 votes). In the third position is the 4-day week (with 292 votes) and lastly, unlimited paid vacation (with 84 votes).
Source of the data: Reddit.
Next, we’re going to explore further the corporate benefits just mentioned and understand what are the advantages of each of them.
The top 4 benefits IT professionals value the most
1. Remote work (preferred by 43,7%)
Remote work is something that many professionals have been striving for for several years, especially the IT professionals. The covid-19 pandemic has justified this request by showing that it is possible to be as or even more productive from home. The 2022 State of Remote Engineering Report shows that professionals are happier working remotely, and feel more productive and effective in their jobs.
If you still think remote work is not the most profitable model for you, think twice. Not only will your employees be happier and more productive working wherever they feel more comfortable and productive, but you will also have the chance to hire further from the city where your company's office is, maybe even hire from abroad. Location will no longer be a limitation!
Advantages of remote work:
Time-saving: professionals find that they have a lot more time for their work and their families. This extra time can be used to get more work done, spend more time with family, exercise, or simply relax;
Increase your pool of candidates;
A smaller carbon footprint: employees don't have to travel to their offices, which could also have an environmental benefit.
2. Freedom to choose when and where to work (preferred by 26,4%)
This perk refers to the possibility of choosing where to work (remote or in the office), and also to the possibility of adapting the work schedule to one’s needs and preferences - this is a fast-growing priority for talented professionals in all sectors and industries. IT professionals are not the exception.
Choosing when they work from home or the office allows IT professionals to benefit from both worlds - the ease and comfort of their homes, but also the joy and excitement of going to the office and meeting with their colleagues.
Choosing when to start and finish work, the length of their lunch break, their work breaks, etc, allows IT professionals to adapt their work schedule to when they are more productive and to their personal needs.
This freedom is strongly associated with hybrid work. While many companies only adopted hybrid work during the Covid-19 pandemic, others had already adopted this model as a regular practice, due to its benefits. With hybrid work, employees can manage their time, but without the usual mechanisms of control. Autonomy and motivation go together. By giving autonomy to employees, they also get responsibility.
Advantages of choosing when and where to work:
Convenience: employees decide where to work, and having that flexibility can increase productivity. Also, it allows employees to adjust their professional life to their private life and so increasing their happiness and fulfillment.
Time management: when working remotely, employees feel more comfortable and focused, they don’t have to commute to work, which gives them more time.
Social needs: on the other hand, if they feel lonely at home, they can choose to work from the office.
Focus: many employees can work the way they feel more productive on that day/week, so they can focus more on their tasks. That will help improve efficiency and consequently the company's results.
3. A 4-day week (preferred by 23,3%)
Since the end of the 19th century, we have gradually reduced the number of working hours on a typical working week. A four-day working week is not a compressed work schedule, but rather a reduced one. In this system, the employees would work approximately 28 hours over four days and have a three-day weekend.
There has been a lot of discussion concerning the emerging trend of the 4-day working week, but according to recent test trials of this new working model, the majority of employees feel happier and less stressed with a 4 days work week, and more than half of the companies found it easier to attract and retain talent.
Advantages of a 4-day week:
Increased Productivity: a detailed analysis of the relationship and productivity driven by Sanford University revealed a clear correlation between these two factors. Overworked employees are less productive than employees who work an average or normal workweek.
An Equal Workplace: In the UK, research on the Gender Pay Gap from the Government Equalities Office reveals that two million British people are not currently employed due to childcare responsibilities and 89% of these people are women. A 4 -day work week model might promote an equal workplace as employees would be able to spend more time with their families and harmonize personal and work commitments.
Better Employee Engagement: A 4-day week can lead to happier and more committed employees. Workers are less likely to be stressed or take sick leave since they have time to rest and recover. As a result, they return to their jobs feeling ready to take on new challenges.
4. Unlimited vacation policy (preferred by 6,7%)
Under an unlimited vacation policy, employees can take the amount of time they wish, as long as they remain performing their assigned duties and the company's business is not disturbed. Some companies let their employees determine the number of paid days off and allow them to decide how they will spend that time, meaning that unlimited vacation time covers more than just holiday time, it gives employees free time to do just about anything that is not job-related.
The concept isn't brand new, but it has been on the rise. Over the past few years, as the difficulties of hiring and retaining qualified talent intensify in highly competitive sectors such as technologies, companies have started to consider adding the possibility of unlimited paid holidays to the benefits package offered to their employees. Having an unlimited number of (paid) vacation days has become very popular in American technology companies and is gaining supporters amongst European companies and workers.
This strategy shows that employees manage their own time, and their performance metrics are based on productivity and meeting deadlines rather than the number of hours worked. Goldman Sachs already does it, as well as Netflix, LinkedIn, Oracle, Twitter, Zoom, and SalesForce.
Advantages of an unlimited vacation policy:
It eliminates the need to control and pay for unused days off (whether because of extra hours worked or because the end of the year is approaching).
It can increase productivity.
Helps create a work/life balance.
The top 4 benefits IT professionals value the most: final thoughts
Offering corporate benefits is very important to help you hire and retain tech talent, as employees nowadays expect more than a salary to feel motivated in their jobs.
One very important benefit to consider is to allow your employees to work out of the office.
If you don't allow your employees to work 100% remote, or at least, for a few days a week, consider offering that benefit in the near future - as the IT professionals on Reddit, who answered the question posted by Teamlyzer, very clearly showed their preference regarding the first two benefits, which together represent 70,1% of the respondents.
Regarding the last two benefits, for now they don't seem to be so appreciated as the first two, perhaps because the respondents never experienced them in practice. Consider adopting them before it becomes the norm to stand up from other tech companies!
Finally, if you feel overwhelmed by the competition when it comes to recruiting and hiring professionals for your tech team, don't worry, we are here for you!
With over 25,000 tech candidates interviewed, our recruiters know the market very well! Let us become your recruitment partner, get in touch.