Around the world, businesses have been experiencing what’s now become known as the Great Resignation. Even South Africa, with our incredibly high unemployment rates, has not been immune to this trend.
Every historic event has unintended consequences, and one of the most unexpected outcomes of the global pandemic has been resignations. While the financial struggles triggered by the pandemic have been all too real, people have also recognized that quality of life is important – and they no longer want to be doing jobs they don’t like for companies that don’t look after them.
In Microsoft’s 2021 Work Trend Index, it was revealed that more than 40% of the global workforce was considering leaving their employer that year, and well into 2022 we know this trend hasn’t changed.
In fact, according to LinkedIn’s 2022 Global Talent Trends report, employees are ready to walk away from jobs that do not meet their needs, and the crisis is even worse in technology. Tech departments are already understaffed – particularly in South Africa – and with people leaving, these departments are only coming under more strain, with those remaining working harder and feeling more stress and pressure. On top of that, understaffed IT teams are under increasing strain from sophisticated cyberattacks, which are relentless. Which just leads to more resignations.
Before we address solutions, it’s worth looking at why so many people are leaving.
The world has gone digital and yet many businesses are not investing adequately in technology. Frustrations with networks, systems, laptops and desktops that don’t work well can lead to poor worker experiences.
High work, low pay.
There is an expectation that employees should be available and willing to work extremely hard (in some cases, one person is doing the job of two or even three people), without compensating them for the amount of work they do.
Lack of work-life balance.
Covid-driven lockdowns and remote working cut commutes out of everyone’s lives, allowing them to spend more time with family and giving them more control over how and when they work. The move back to offices is removing this flexibility.
Lack of training opportunities.
Tech workers in particular want more training opportunities. Technology, ways of working and software platforms are constantly evolving. Without the right training, people are left feeling frustrated, unable to perform their roles well and unproductive.
So, what can we do?
In many ways, technology is the problem – but it’s also the solution. First, because the right technology will enable your business to develop a successful hybrid model, which is what most employees are looking for. Add to this better ways of working and streamlined processes and systems, and your business will become an employer of choice.
Here’s how to get started.
Transform your training.
Focus on training your tech employees, but also on training all employees in your tech systems. Businesses invest in technology and implement agile methods like SCRUM, but they don’t train their teams. In general, ramping up training and career development gives employees a clear career roadmap (encouraging them to stay) and ensures that your teams are remaining relevant and future-proofed.
Enable natural connections between employees.
A plethora of user-friendly collaboration tools are available to foster connection and culture within a hybrid working world. The focus shouldn’t only be on getting the work done, but on team building as well. It’s also important to recognise that because of these tools, hybrid working is possible, and every employee does not need to return to the office full time.
Embrace agility and flexibility.
If you’re serious about improving your employees’ sense of wellbeing and work experience, technology that drives flexibility in hybrid work and remote work and supports shifting teams and flexible hours is a must. However, once again, these platforms must be implemented, supported, and ongoing training is critical.
Burnout avoidance should be top of the list when choosing technology.
AI has revolutionized the way we work, for better and worse. Too much AI that limits human connection is leading to burnout. Similarly, leveraging technology without the right teams and training in place can lead to the frustrations we have already mentioned. On the other hand, AI that augments human performance can boost employees, making them feel empowered and supported – again, with the right teams and skills in place to support the journey. Automating repetitive tasks can also free up employees to do the things that only humans can do, which tends to be more rewarding work.
A better future awaits
There are many reasons for the Great Resignation. To ensure that your business does not fall victim to it, it’s important to acknowledge the role technology has played in driving away employees – but the role it can play in attracting top talent as well. When you create a flexible, humane, and empowering workplace, employees will be happy, productive and invested in the mission of the company.
Visit Torque IT by Adcorp today for more information!