How to retain your top talent – Part 2

The first part of this article focussed on how to hire & attract top talent to your business. Part 2 continues this theme with ways to make sure your people are committed to your business and never want to leave.


1. Offer a route to flexible construction working!


A CIPD report states only 11% of jobs advertised over £20k are posted as being flexible whilst 87% of employees work flexible or wish they could. This method will quite simply give you a lightening quick way to steel a march when hiring & retaining top talent. This is a less of a problem for office-based construction or engineering roles, but we commonly hear that this isn’t possible for site based roles. It is and you can bet that there are companies out there now who are getting this to work.


Have a real think about how you could look to offer some form of flexibility and bear in mind it doesn’t just mean working from home. Flexibility could be staggered start times, shorter core hours on site, split roles or extended leave periods. From the sites we visit we know this won’t be a simple process to introduce and will require some well thought out practices, but if you’re serious about retaining your best talent whilst attracting new talent – this is our number 1 tip.


2. It’s not all about you and what you can get from your talent

The best construction and engineering talent we see aren’t keen on just securing ‘a job’. They’re in demand anyway due to their skillsets, and know they can secure the upper bracket salaries. So, they are often looking at other key features of your company. They want to see the growth opportunities for their own development, the office and team culture and the passion that drives the business.


Does your company have a history of cyclical work or do you hold key contracts that can entice more talent to your business? Being able to involve talent in key decisions with regular interaction with management & leadership can really have a drastic effect of retaining your top talent.


Retaining your top talent is a two way street and people want something in return and often it isn’t just about the money. Does your talent have a direct impact on achieving company goals? Do they have access to top tier decision makers? This can make your company stand out from larger organisations as they typically can’t offer this as easily.


3. Be honest about your company and where you’re going

There’s no point presenting your company as something it isn’t. This will be found out in no time if you’re not upfront early on. Are you an exciting new business that is full of energy, drive & ambition? If so, you may want to focus on people who are passionate and have educational knowledge, but maybe lack some of the real-life work experience. Make sure that they buy into your brand mission and vision.


If you’re not able to compete with market leaders in terms of perks and bonuses don’t. But focus on the things that you can offer that larger business aren’t able to. The speed and excitement of a small business can far outweigh larger more bureaucratic organisations. Just make sure you proposition, your brand, and opportunities are clear for your talent. These include ownership opportunities, flexibility in the role or being more generous with holiday allowance. Are you able to accommodate people with families, and split roles across 2 people who maybe can’t be extended the same flexibilities in more corporate environments? Embrace this properly and you could be well on your way to attracting top talent!


4. Look internally for your next hire

This is obviously a key way to help you retain your talent. So often people in organisations who are overlooked for new roles because their skillset maybe isn’t exactly as required (see part 1 of our blog regarding this). In a candidate short market such as this many organisations are looking at training and upskilling as ways of combatting their internal skills and experience issues.


The primary benefit here is that this is a tried and tested method of increasing employee retention and has subsequent positive effects on employee satisfaction. Also as a by-product, companies with a strong learning and development culture benefit 30 – 50% higher engagement and retention rates. Try and not look at your talent based on what they currently do but take a longer view on what they could possibly become with extra training, guidance and support.


Read here How to hire & retain top Construction & Engineering talent – Part 1.