IT Management Slideshow: How To Retain Knowledge When Top Tech Talent Departs

By Dennis McCafferty  |  Posted 01-18-2011

Take inventory of the following:

1. The institutional memory of those who are, or soon will be, retiring.2. Special knowledge of products, services and/or customers from those who are leaving.3. Insight about work processes/workflow from these departing individuals.

Take inventory of the following:

“Shadowing” keeps valuable knowledge in-house

Designate which of your tech talent should spend extensive time with those departing staffers who know the most critical information.

“Shadowing” keeps valuable knowledge in-house

Try routine job switching and job rotation

Let employees trade roles on a temporary basis to ensure cross training of process and performance functions.

Try routine job switching and job rotation

Focus on the individual, not the job title

Those with highly valued knowledge may not be high up the ladder. Likewise, those who are best equipped to absorb such knowledge may be underutilized, lower-tier players.

Focus on the individual, not the job title

Tech talent management is not leadership development

Tech talent management focuses on sharing knowledge rather than promoting people.

Tech talent management is not leadership development

Retention starts with the job interview

Describe department goals, culture, and day-to-day practices honestly and clearly during interviews. This way, there are no "unpleasant surprises" after a new hire comes on board.

Retention starts with the job interview

Ask job applicants to discuss their greatest professional accomplishment(s) to date, as well as what tech niches drive their passion.

This helps you determine whether their strongest projects and interests intersect with your department's needs.

Ask job applicants to discuss their greatest professional accomplishment(s) to date, as well as what tech niches drive their passion.

Retention is the managers job

Make employee retention one of the criteria you use to evaluate managers. Tie decisions about salary increases to this criterion. Quantify expectations to managers so goals are clear and they can track their own progress throughout the year.

Retention is the managers job