BEYOND THE PAYCHECK: THE IMPORTANCE OF PURPOSE FOR ATTRACTING IT TALENT
MARCH 31, 2023
In today's digital age, technology has become an essential component of any business. With the increasing dependence on technology, IT teams have become an integral part of organizations. However, attracting and retaining top IT talent can be challenging, especially when they are motivated by more than just a paycheck. This is where creating a purpose-driven IT team comes in.
Several studies have shown that purpose-driven work is essential for employee satisfaction, engagement, and productivity. For example, a study conducted by Deloitte found that 73% of employees who say they work for a purpose-driven company are engaged, compared to just 23% of those who don't. Another study by the University of Michigan found that employees who find meaning and purpose in their work are more productive and have lower turnover rates than those who don't.
Creating a purpose-driven IT team can also lead to better business outcomes. According to a study by the EY Beacon Institute, purpose-driven companies outperform their peers in revenue growth, profitability, and stock price. Therefore, developing a purpose-driven IT team is not just beneficial for employees but also helps to drive business success.
Why IT Talents need purpose in their jobs?
In the modern workplace, having a sense of purpose is becoming increasingly important to employees. This is particularly true of millennials and Generation Z who will make up a significant proportion of the global workforce in the coming years. A sense of purpose is seen as an asset that can help attract and retain top talent. Glassdoor's Mission and Culture Survey in 2019 revealed that 77% of adults consider a company's purpose before applying for a job. According to the Mercer Global Talent Trends survey, 73% of 7,300 respondents expect employee-related disruption and are taking action to prepare for the future of work.
Creating a collective ambition that aligns with an organization's purpose can boost employee engagement and loyalty, which, in turn, can boost profits. Furthermore, recent research by Betterup indicates that nine out of ten people are willing to earn less money to do more meaningful work.
By providing IT talents with a sense of purpose and meaning in their work, companies can help to ensure that they are more engaged, motivated, and committed to their jobs. This can lead to better outcomes for both the individuals and the company, including higher job satisfaction, better performance, and increased innovation and creativity.
Benefits of Purpose-Driven IT teams
Creating a purpose-driven IT team has several benefits, including:
- Increased employee engagement, motivation, and productivity
Salesforce, a cloud-based software company, has helped to create a highly engaged workforce, with the company consistently ranking as one of the best places to work. This high level of employee engagement has translated into high levels of productivity and customer satisfaction, with Salesforce consistently achieving strong financial performance.
- Improved team morale and company culture
Zappos has a unique approach to team building, with new hires going through an intensive training program that emphasizes the company's culture and values. This purpose-driven culture has helped to create a highly engaged and motivated workforce, with Zappos consistently ranking as one of the best places to work.
- Better retention of top talent
Patagonia prioritizes environmentally responsible practices and high-quality products, creating a purpose-driven approach that resonates with employees, customers, and other stakeholders. This approach has resulted in strong emotional connections with these groups, leading to high levels of loyalty and retention of top talent within the company.
- Enhanced innovation and creativity
One of Google's missions is to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful, and this purpose has helped to create a culture of innovation and creativity that has led to the development of many groundbreaking products and services.
- Improved customer satisfaction
The Bain & Company study found that purpose-driven companies are more likely to have loyal customers who are willing to pay a premium for their products or services. Despite being in a premium price range, TOMS has been successful in establishing a strong emotional connection with its customers through its mission of donating a pair of shoes to a child in need for every pair purchased.
Purpose-Driven Team Success: A Case Study
One financial brand had been struggling to create an exceptional digital product for a couple of years. Despite spending a lot of money on various attempts to improve the design, every attempt ended up being a disaster, resulting in a lifeless excel spreadsheet that failed to delight users. As a result, the brand reached out to the UXDA team to collaborate on creating a product that would evoke strong positive emotions in its users.
The UXDA team recognized that to add "soul" to a digital financial product, they needed to establish a deep emotional connection with customers and make them feel special. They focused on designing a product that would resonate with users, make them feel cared for, and create a special bond.
One of the challenges they tackled was designing an intuitive banking back-office software that would make employees feel empowered and productive. They conducted 21 end-user interviews, gathered 85 user-insights, created 134 wireframes and 140 design screens, and spent 945 hours on UXDA work. Their strategy was to make banking back-office software as easy as social networking, with gamification that empowers productivity and emotion-driven interactions to ensure a human touch. The solution reduced employee learning from several months to just a few hours and relieved the solution of 65% of unnecessary functionality.
The result of their collaboration was a digital product that had a soul, which resonated with users and fostered a sense of community. The product was able to create a deeper connection with users, differentiate itself from competitors, create value beyond its functional capabilities, evoke trust, and ultimately provide a special experience that touched users' hearts.
The UXDA team believes that adding soul is the vital force that gives a digital product and a purpose-driven financial brand a powerful vibe. It makes customers feel better, makes the product team feel passionate, creates purpose, and addresses our emotions.
Key elements to create a purpose-driven IT Team
Creating a purpose-driven IT team requires a deliberate effort and a clear understanding of what motivates your employees. Here are some key elements to consider:
- Clearly defined purpose: For example, a purpose-driven IT team in a finance organization might have a clear purpose of " helping our clients achieve financial security and peace of mind through expert advice and innovative solutions." This purpose statement clearly communicates the company's focus on providing value to its clients through expertise and innovation and emphasizes the importance of financial security and peace of mind.
- Shared values: MIT and Carnegie Mellon found that teams with shared values are more likely to work together effectively and achieve their goals. When team members share common values and a common purpose, they are more likely to be aligned in their work and approach to problem-solving.
- Empowerment: This is a critical element in creating a purpose-driven IT team. When employees feel empowered, they are more likely to feel a sense of ownership and investment in the team's purpose, leading to increased engagement, motivation, and productivity.
One of the key elements of Netflix's purpose-driven culture encourages its employees to take risks, make decisions, and act with autonomy. This approach is reflected in the company's famous "Netflix Culture Deck," which outlines the company's values and principles, including the importance of empowering employees.
- Continuous learning and development: This can include training programs, coaching, mentorship, conferences, and workshops. When employees feel that they are continually learning and growing, they are more likely to be engaged and motivated in their work.
- Purpose-driven leadership: According to research conducted by the University of Sussex, when leaders exhibited a clear sense of purpose, which included having a vision, displaying a commitment to stakeholders, and possessing strong ethical values, their employees reported higher levels of happiness and productivity.
In 2010, Unilever's CEO, Paul Polman, set a bold goal for the company to double its revenue while reducing its environmental footprint and increasing its positive social impact. He believed that by aligning the company's purpose with its business strategy, Unilever could achieve both financial success and positive social impact. As a result of these efforts, Unilever has achieved significant success in reducing its environmental impact, increasing its positive social impact, and achieving financial growth. Unilever's Sustainable Living Brands experienced a 69% faster growth rate than the rest of the business in 2019, contributing to 75% of the overall company's growth. The company has also earned several recognition and awards for its sustainability and purpose-driven leadership initiatives.
Actionable Tips to Attract and Develop Purpose-Driven IT Talents
Encourage Employee Advocacy: Encourage your current purpose-driven workforce to speak about their experiences and successes in living out the organization's purpose and values. This not only provides insight into the organization's culture but also serves as a powerful endorsement of the organization from the employees themselves.
Share Your Purpose: It's important to communicate the organization's differentiator and purpose-driven approach to candidates, not just the standard incentives and policies. Share success stories, company values, and the organization's stance on important issues to show that the organization is truly purpose-driven.
Clarify Role Expectations: During the interview process, provide clear information about the role, its criticality, and its impact on the organization's purpose-driven approach. This ensures that candidates understand how their role contributes to the bigger picture and the organization's mission.
Emphasize Core Values: Provide a simulation activity or scenario-based question to assess how the candidate behaves in a certain condition and whether their behavior aligns with the organization's purpose-driven values. This ensures that candidates understand the importance of living out the organization's values in their role.
Hire for Potential: Rather than just hiring based on technical skills, also look for potential and a shared sense of purpose and values in candidates. Consider candidates who show a willingness to learn, grow, and contribute to the organization's purpose-driven approach.
As industries evolve and modern workplaces change, companies are investing more in solutions to foster a deep sense of purpose among employees and encourage their investment in the company's future. Having a clear purpose can drive motivation and provide a sense of direction, while also increasing customer loyalty to your brand. If you haven't established a mission statement for your business, now is the time to do so. If you already have a strong purpose, make sure to communicate it to both employees and customers. Inspiring your team can lead to better performance and a stronger bottom line, and it's important to extend this focus on purpose and positive culture to customer interactions. By prioritizing company purpose and culture, you can create a more positive environment for both employees and customers.
Recruitday, a specialized recruitment platform in the Philippines for IT professionals, understands the importance of building a purpose-driven team. Our services can help organizations find the right IT talent that will contribute to the organization's purpose and goals. With our comprehensive talent acquisition solutions, we can help organizations attract, develop, and retain purpose-driven IT talent. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you build a purpose-driven IT team.
MARCH 31, 2023
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