Main image of article Why Your Tech Employees Are Looking for Work — And What You Can Do About It

Earlier this year, some of the biggest names in tech laid off tens of thousands of employees. However, the tech market seems well on its way to recovery, and tech hiring remains tight. Unemployment in the tech sector recently dipped to 1.8 percent, well below national numbers

Preventing the loss of top performing tech talent remains a pressing challenge for employers. How pressing? Robert Half’s recent data shows that 64 percent of tech workers are seeking out new roles. 

Understanding why your employees are looking for new opportunities is important for retaining top talent. Here’s why tech professionals are looking for work, and how you can retain and attract top tech talent:  

3 Reasons Why Your Tech Talent is Looking for Work

The biggest reasons your tech talent is looking elsewhere are probably not surprising:


While other benefits may grab headlines, at the end of the day, money is king when it comes to retaining and attracting talent. According to McKinsey’s research, 37 percent of tech professionals cited pay as the reason they’re planning to leave a job, and 45 percent said pay is why they’re planning on taking a new job. 

Importantly, 72 percent of respondents who cited pay as a reason for leaving said their total compensation at their previous role didn’t adequately reflect qualifications and efforts. And talent has more reason than ever to look closely at compensation versus workload and qualifications. With tech salaries rising despite recent turbulence (and showing no sign of slowing), talent expects to cash in. 


“Benefits” can be vague when used in recruiting circles. Traditionally, benefits meant health insurance, life insurance, or retirement contributions. In recent years, employers have expanded benefits to culture “perks” such as ping-pong tables and free food.  

If you consider benefits through the lens of “expectations,” it’s easier to see how they factor into tech professionals’ thinking—and how their lack leads tech talent to look for work elsewhere. Here are the benefits that matter most to tech talent, according to a recent study of tech professionals by Deloitte:

  • The biggest incentive for a role was its meaning and purpose (54 percent of tech professionals).
  • Tech workers want opportunities to shape not only their current roles, but their careers. This extends beyond basic learning and development to greater career autonomy, frequent performance feedback, and big-picture advice. 
  • Tech professionals increasingly expect to find environments where “soft” skills like leadership, problem-solving, and collaboration are highly valued. 

Remote Work 

Before 2020, tech professionals were ahead of the curve with remote work. But the pandemic likely changed expectations around remote work among talent forever. Most tech talent prefer remote-first models and one third want to work fully remote indefinitely. In fact, 46 percent of tech professionals say they’d consider leaving an organization if they couldn’t work remotely.  

So it’s easy to see why pushes for return to office hardly go over well. Tech talent employers know this. That’s why the number of remote tech jobs so far this year has kept pace with 2022 numbers. 

4 Ways Your organization Can Retain and Attract Top Tech Talent

Now that you know why tech talent is looking for new opportunities, here are some simple-yet-powerful steps you can take to retain your top talent — and attract new talent: 

Make job postings transparent

Job postings need to clearly state pay and expectations. If the position requires coming into the office at any point, avoid attaching “remote” to your job postings to make them more eye-catching. Moreover, remove internal acronyms from postings and replace them with appealing industry-standard, candidate-centric terms. Most importantly, postings need to speak directly to what candidates care about. Consult recent hires and long-time high performers in the role to identify what’s most exciting about the position. 

Keep candidates informed

According to’s research, poor communication is the top reason candidates abandon the hiring process. If you’re not regularly updating candidates on their preferred platforms (which is often texting), another employer will communicate effectively — and likely steal your top candidate. 

Provide strong internal communication while respecting boundaries

Nearly 70 percent of remote worker respondents to a Forbes Advisor survey said they experienced burnout from digital communication. Organizations must define communication expectations and help employees set boundaries. Expecting emails after work hours or texting (at any time, but especially after work hours) are common boundary breakers.

Work with tech talent to define desired career paths

Regularly meet with your tech talent to help define their goals within your organization and their careers. Define clear steps for them to make progress toward their goals. But allow flexibility for malleable career paths as your talent grows and refines their goals. 

As organizations strive for competitive differentiation in an increasingly cluttered and competitive market and amidst an uncertain economy, retaining your best technical talent will be increasingly important. Thankfully as we’ve seen, the path toward better retention shouldn’t be an exceedingly difficult one.