key IT contractor retentionIT contract employee retention is an ongoing concern, or should be for any smart manager. Losing a member of your team before the project is complete is a headache no one needs. We’ve covered this topic before at Staffing 360, particularly in 6 Things You Can Do to Dramatically Increase IT Contractor Retention. I’d like to remind you of one of the pieces of advice from our eGuide – recognizing exceptional performance, and share a recent experience that illustrates this.

Our client, a leading financial institution, contacted us to tell us how happy they were with one of our IT consultants, a QA Analyst who just completed six months of an 18-month assignment related to the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA). They appreciated his willingness to travel and commented that he had “really done a lot for our organization, developing some great relationships with our development and business partners.” They also specifically asked us “to recognize…his above and beyond performance for our team.” I am so grateful when a client shares this kind of positive feedback and was more than happy to do so.

We know the value of this type of recognition; it motivates people to continue to achieve and increases loyalty and retention. But the nature of the contingent workforce model means we can’t do it without our clients’ help. We expect our IT consultants to meet high performance standards on an ongoing basis, so hearing nothing (i.e., no complaints!) just means you are satisfied. Unless you tell us, we won’t necessarily know that you are more than satisfied with someone in particular. When you take the time to let us know that one of our IT contractors has performed exceptionally well, we can recognize and reward that performance, and we both benefit from a happier, motivated worker.

Many companies understand the importance and benefits of employee recognition and have formal programs for their permanent workforce but may not be doing all they can with regard to their contingent employees, often out of fear and misinformation. The way things were handled above, with the client communicating and the staffing firm acting is exactly correct and allows you to appropriately acknowledge outstanding work while staying on the right side of IC classification and co-employment rules.

As we advise in our eGuide, efforts to retain the best employees must be continuous and utilize a variety of approaches; employee recognition is only one of them but it can be a powerful tool. If you’ve been putting off telling someone how happy you are with their recent performance, write that email today. It’ll feel good and you’ll be increasing the likelihood of retaining that person. And if it is one of ATR’s IT contractors that has impressed you – then by all means, please let me know, ASAP!

Download: 6 Things You Can Do to Dramatically Increase IT Contractor Retention


Jerry Brenholz
President and CEO
ATR International


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