How not to lose developers from the outsourcing project?

Job hopping is commonplace in the Ukrainian IT industry. It leads to high staff turnover and gives HRs a headache. What is even worse is that customers grow doubtful about the company policy. When your Upwork profile says you are a close-knit team of highly experienced and talented developers, but in fact, your employees leave two to three months later after the beginning of the project, you may seem to be somewhat ‘dodgy’. The situation looks even worse while it comes to the developers outsourcing.

Related: Will the next Silicon Valley be in Ukraine?

Why do employees leave your project?

What is wrong? Why do developers appear to be disengaged? How can you persuade them to stay with the company? What do you need to do to cultivate their loyalty? Maybe there is no loyalty after all?

Broadly speaking, there are two categories of developers: “nomads” and “homebodies”.

Nomads change jobs regularly because they get itchy feet, no matter how famous or successful the company is: Google and Amazon have one of the highest turnover rates according to Techrepublic.

Homebodies seem loyal because they are reluctant to look for anything else or consider other offers even if they might get better working conditions or salaries. This type comprises more reliable staff for the app developers outsourcing. This could be an ultimate solution to a staff turnover problem; get some homebodies.

What prospects motivate developers to stay: technologies, team, career growth, salary, or the combination of all these factors?

Project technologies

Indeema encourages developers to learn and use the most modern technologies provided they justify their use to the customers. Recently we managed to convince our partner to use node js and angular instead of PHP – everyone was satisfied with that choice.

Good outsourcing team

We place a high value on the team. Given they get on well together, developers bond into a powerful unit that can undertake any projects and strengthen the company. There is hardly red tape and when any issue or problem arises it can be resolved immediately.

Сareer growth opportunities

We make sure the developers have a career goal ahead of them and a strategy for achieving it. We give them support in self-improvement because we realize their growth results in our prosperity. We give them plenty of opportunities to train the members of PLLUG, our programming community for students (see http://pllug.org.ua/), thereby developing their skills and being paid for that.

When the customers outsource the project to your team, they expect to find dedicated developers who will try their hardest to satisfy them. The contractors have to make sure it happens even if the project is trivial or outdated. The software developers outsourcing in itself requires the stability of a team regardless the scope or complexity of a project.

Related: Outsourcing mobile development for a startup

For example, imagine you have a team of 4 iOS developers doing a tedious project for a grumbling customer. At first developers work hard to please the customer and put forward plenty of useful suggestions about how to improve the project. They are driven by the idea and sense of achieving something worthwhile. Over time they grow tired and just do their work without extra commitment. If their efforts are not rewarded or acknowledged, they stop trying. The contractor is struggling: the customers demand more while developers become robot like. And eventually they start leaving in the hope to get a better job.

Outsourcing development team

Another thing: developers don’t gel as a team. The strong ones suppress the weaker. The aggressive ones fight. The weaker ones feel pressurized. The outcome is still the same; some of them will leave the company. Why not work on team bonding? And besides, don’t expect developers to slave away seven days a week. If they work excessively, they will burn out and quit. Regular team bonding can stop that too.

developers and money

Finally and most importantly, perhaps, apart from the sense of belonging and accomplishment, salary is extremely important. I have got an acquaintance who says, “When I am fed up with the project, I remember how big my salary is and calm down”. There is an English saying: "pay peanuts and you get monkeys", but that can hardly be the case. Developers are not paid peanuts, but they do require decent salaries to keep them working.

Is the key to success simply getting the right team together? A team of individual skilled and artistic engineers who can work and succeed together? Sometimes it can just be an interesting project that holds the team together. Or is it just the nature of the work and the kind of people who are attracted by it that leads to job hopping? Developers are fiercely independent artists who need freedom of action and choice. If they get attached to the project, they will become loyal to the company. If not, they will move on. Perhaps customers just have to live with it if they want the high level of inspired input that will keep them ahead of the field.

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