Poaching of IT employees on the rise

Companies are offering their IT pros more flexible hours and more money in the hopes of getting them to stay

Businesses, beware: Poachers are on the prowl, and they have their sights set on your top IT workers. According to a survey conducted by Dice.com, 54 percent of hiring managers and recruiters expect organizations to aggressively engage in poaching this year.

This news certainly complements research pointing to high demand for experienced IT workers, fueled in part by the booming mobile industry and burgeoning cloud computing market. It's also good news for IT workers, as they may have more bargaining chips than they did in recent years.

Aware of the risks of losing top IT talent to the competition, hiring managers said they are dangling more benefits. The more common incentives: flexible work hours, followed by the opportunity to work with new or emerging technologies. The third most common incentive is, gasp, a salary increase, followed by "better career opportunities" in the fourth spot. Rounding out the top incentives are promotions or new titles, bonuses, and the opportunity to telecommute.

Of note to IT employees out there who are contemplating jumping ship: Your boss may be onto your plans. Fifty-four percent of the survey respondents said there are some tell-tale signs that an employee is being wooed by another suitor. According to Alice Hill, managing director of Dice.com, the most frequent signal is a change in work habits, such as a lack of engagement with co-workers or projects. Other signs include frequent single-day absences, an adoption of more formal work attire, or getting up to date on expense accounts.

Fortunately for IT workers contemplating a job change, jumping ship doesn't mean you've burned your bridges. Only 11 percent of respondents said they would outright refuse to hire a employee who was poached. 33 percent said they would allow the person to return, while the remaining 56 percent said it would depend on the employee.

This story, "Poaching of IT employees on the rise," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Get the first word on what the important tech news really means with the InfoWorld Tech Watch blog. For the latest business technology news, follow InfoWorld.com on Twitter.

Related: