You’re hiring a team of engineers, and you have a few clear goals in mind: First, you want to attract and hire the best talent available. And second, you want to retain your new hires as long as possible. You want to cultivate their skills, bring out their best and make sure they’re getting as much out of the relationship as you are, so they stay for years, grow with the company and mentor others.
So, how can you turn your company into a place where talented engineers want to work? How can you shape your culture in a way to help reach your goals? Here are a few environmental and cultural conditions that encourage great engineers to thrive.
Engineers (like most modern employees) don’t love overly rigid schedules and they resent needless constraints placed on how and where their work gets done. Build a culture and a work environment in which a nine-to-five schedule can easily become eight to four, or a week of eight-hour days can become four days plus Saturday, or four ten-hour days, or a schedule that allows your teams to work remotely when needed. Offer summer hours, allow employees to make up time and provide PTO instead of strict sick and vacation days. Don’t make adult professional workers with college degrees beg for an hour out of the office to attend to personal or family needs.
A changing routine
Relentlessness and routine can wear down employees in any industry, and there’s no faster way to kill morale and engagement than placing an employee in front of an eternally repetitive task with no end in sight. Give your engineers problems to solve, and if their tasks are routine by nature, encourage them to discuss big ideas and come up with solutions to problems you don’t necessarily have or see. Allow sparks of creativity to ignite and blaze away, and if an employee comes to you with a new concept or idea, listen.
Again, what engineers, and pretty much all employees want, are basically the same. This includes educational opportunities and a chance to take courses and gain new knowledge on company time or with company financial support.
“Busy time” and downtime should be interspersed throughout the day for everyone. Encourage breaks, periodic standing, walking and stretching, and co-worker interactions. In fact, don’t just allow them; encourage or even require them as a central component of mental and physical health.
For more on how to keep your team of engineers happy, healthy and onboard, contact the staffing experts at Extension.