Recruitment and Retention Strategies: Find and Keep the Best Maintenance Technicians

The recent pandemic has caused lasting changes in the workplace. Employers in every industry must adapt to these changes to persist and succeed. One area that experienced such changes is the staffing of skill-based and technical positions. With high demand and a shortage of supply, employers are finding it harder to hire and keep their technical employees. Maintenance technicians are a great example of these skilled and technical positions that require companies to employ new recruitment and retention strategies.

In this post, we look into some valuable tips to consider when hiring for the maintenance technician position. Finally, we’ll explore the essential strategies to retain maintenance technicians and utilize them to the fullest.

Maintenance Technician Recruitment Strategies

In the current global shortage of skilled workers, finding the best candidates for your maintenance team can be challenging. But with the right strategies, as we’ve outlined below, you can easily find the maintenance technician that best fits your organization in no time.

Understand the Role

Hiring the best technician starts with a thorough understanding of the role you are looking to fill. The maintenance technician’s role and responsibilities can vary depending on your industry, products or services, unique processes, technologies, etc. By understanding the specific maintenance technician role you’re hiring for, you can identify the ideal qualifications, experiences, and other requirements to look for. Hiring highly qualified candidates who are not a fit for their roles ultimately results in lower retention.

With the shortage of candidates, you may be tempted to lower your qualifications or hire inexperienced candidates. Although doing so may not be the worst thing for your company, it may result in some issues, such as unrealistic expectations or extended training periods. When hiring maintenance technicians, it helps to know when to adjust or lower your qualifications to attract more applicants. Be willing to compromise on some requirements and be strict on others. It must all come down to how necessary some qualifications are to your specific technician needs.

Make the Job Appealing

Next, you must also have a clear idea of the future employees you are looking to hire and their motivations. With the limited number of workers available, expect high competition from other employers. Other than having an attractive compensation package, your job offer must stand out by having other benefits that prospective workers would want.

You must ask, what makes your company appealing and an excellent choice for a maintenance technician? Is your maintenance work culture suitable for younger generations? Does the position offer a variety of career opportunities and growth? Are there new skill sets or technologies to learn from this job?

Be Creative in Job Posting

Finding the ideal employee also relies on the extent of your search and the channel you use to reach your applicants. The past decade or so has shown how valuable online job posting websites are in reaching active applicants. But recently, focusing on social media branding and engagement has helped companies increase their chances of getting more applicants and hiring better workers.

Companies with a visible social media presence and positive branding reach a wider range of audiences. Even workers who are not actively searching for a job might be persuaded to apply to companies they feel strongly about. By building a positive profile through these social media channels, you can organically advertise jobs and get highly motivated applicants.

Another creative recruitment strategy is to partner with local technical schools or training centers to get in front of the next generation of technicians. This can help feed your entry-level roles, and then you can focus on ongoing training and retention of those employees.

Improve the Process

The failure to find the ideal worker for a role may be the result of an ineffective process. Often, employers are not hiring as much or as effectively as they want to because they are unaware of significant problems in their recruitment process. These problems may be:

  • Too complicated application forms
  • Interviews that could be more effective in probing applicants or promoting the company
  • Unattractive offers
  • Slow hiring processes
  • And more

Reassess your hiring process by understanding each step and making the necessary improvements. You can start by looking into and improving your job postings and interviewer questions. You can even ask survey questions from applicants to evaluate how they feel about your process.

Maintenance Technician Retention Strategies

Employee retention strategies should go hand-in-hand with any recruitment process you have in place. You don’t want to go through all the trouble of hiring the best, only to lose them. Not only does this create unnecessary costs to the business, but it promotes low morale among retained employees and discourages new applicants from considering your company.

Retaining maintenance technicians is particularly critical because this position and the tasks involved require training applicants for longer periods. Unlike other skilled workers, maintenance technicians need a significant time working with a company’s assets to develop their asset-specific skills and intuition. Below are the ways companies can improve their maintenance technician retention rate. 

Be Proactive

There must be a program in place that promotes the company to your current employees. Do not wait for your technicians to show signs of quitting, or worse, file their resignation letter, before doing anything to keep them. A retention program can include asking for regular feedback or satisfaction surveys, improving working conditions, making salary adjustments, giving out performance rewards, etc. This program should be continuously improving and must adapt to the changing employee conditions or sentiments. If employees feel their opinions matter and will be heard and they have a growing future with a company, they are far more likely to stay.

Click here to read about how a gold mining company digitized their technician training and advancement resulting in an increased retention rate with Redlist.

Offer Competitive Pay

Employees stay as long as their employee needs are met. And at the top of these needs are their compensation and benefits. Companies that have high retention rates know how to compensate their workers for their hard work. A maintenance technician is a laborious and risky job, and as such, these workers expect to get paid appropriately. If you fail to give them their just compensation and other benefits, these valuable workers will not hesitate to go to other companies who value their work more than you do.

Evaluate Performance

A system that evaluates employee performance is critical to retaining employees. Maintenance technicians who receive regular feedback on their quality of work are more likely to perform better and stay longer. It gives the direction to which they should improve and the motivation to keep doing the things they’re doing right. By constantly evaluating employee performance, you can nip any dissatisfaction in the bud and prevent it from becoming a major issue that causes employee resignation.

Appreciate and Commend

Other than through monetary compensation, workers also need to feel valued through receiving recognition for their contributions to an organization. Giving out awards, incentives, and other forms of appreciation or commendation can make a difference in the retention of maintenance technicians. Through these means, companies extend the sense of ownership to their employees. When maintenance technicians have a sense of ownership for company assets, they show more initiative towards maintaining them, go the extra mile to complete their tasks, and have pride in belonging to the company that values them.

Using Redlist’s CMMS to Support Maintenance Recruitment and Retention Strategies

If you are still struggling with recruiting and retaining your maintenance technicians, then maybe it’s time to go digital. Switching to a CMMS (computerized maintenance management system) like Redlist simplifies your processes. Redlist is a user-friendly mobile application that technicians can learn to use instantly. It cuts down on training periods, makes maintenance tasks more efficient, and increases technician’s productivity. Your valuable technicians are less likely to leave you if you keep them from suffering through manual forms, spreadsheets, and headache-causing management systems. While this may not be the most obvious of recruitment and retention strategies, here is an example of how one company put this to work for them. Want to learn more? Click here for more ways Redlist solves your maintenance issues. Schedule your free demo with our experts today!

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