Top 7 reasons IT pros quit their jobs

Employees quit their jobs for a variety of reasons. Where should IT managers focus their retention efforts? 

Despite what many managers may believe, money isn’t the most common reason employees leave their jobs. For IT pros, the main reason is most often boredom with their position, according to a recent survey from CIO/IT Strategy Media Group.

Among the IT staffers polled, these were the most common reasons they voluntarily left their last job:

  1. Wanted a new challenge (21%)
  2. Wanted a higher salary (12%)
  3. General dissatisfaction with the job (10%)
  4. Business uncertainty (6%)
  5. Unwelcome changes in the position (6%)
  6. Lack of necessary skills to handle changes in the position (2%)
  7. New boss or management (2%)

Those results highlight some of the important steps IT managers can take to help keep their best employees from jumping ship to a different company.

Mainly, managers can give top IT pros new roles and responsibilities, and the chance to work with new technologies. However, it’s important to make sure the change is welcome, as 6% of IT pros left their last job because they didn’t like how the position was evolving. And staffers must get the training they need to handle new responsibilities.

In many cases, that can have a substantial benefit both for the employee and the company. For example, many companies are struggling to find IT pros with big data and cloud computing skills. Some may be better off recruiting internally and training current employees to work in those new areas. That’ll bring the necessary skills in house while keeping top performers engaged and loyal.

No substitute for one-on-one communication

Something else made clear by the survey’s results: IT pros have a wide variety of reasons for leaving their jobs. While the seven reasons listed above are fairly common, 21% of survey respondents listed the reason for leaving their last position as “other.”

That means to boost retention efforts, IT managers must put in the effort to keep in touch with employees to find out what they do and don’t like about their jobs and what they’d like to see changed.