But how can mid-market companies compete for the human capital they need against large companies, which are better known and have immense resources, and against startups, which offer the excitement of building something from the ground up?
Sanjay Govil, founder and chairman of global IT outsourcing provider Infinite Computer Solutions, a midsized firm with Fortune 500 clients, has found a way to make his company more appealing as an employer.
A veteran of IBM and Verizon before launching Infinite with just a $1,000 in 1999, Govil took the company public in 2010 and since has grown it to 5,000 employees, approximately half each in the U.S. and India with a small amount in Singapore and Malaysia.
Here are 3 ways he has found to attract and retain millennial employees and compete against formidable opponents.
1. Continuing to innovate. IT has changed drastically over the last several years and continues to do so. While large companies may have the most resources to make the strongest appeal to tech workers, Govil insisted that mid-market companies can compete with that position as long as they stay constantly innovating. “As a mid-market company, we have the flexibility and adaptability to change a lot faster in the marketplace than big companies traditionally do. We are able to offer our people adaptation and training for the latest technologies and innovations. That gets them excited.”
2. Ensuring assignment flexibility. Mid-market enterprises can offer the most flexibility in assignments and roles, Govil feels. “Everyone wants to be specialized, but also to have the necessary skill sets are required to be successful overall in their field.” Mid-market firms, he said, offer a perfect blend of both.
In addition, while startups can offer the ultimate in assignment flexibility almost by definition as they work to grow, they also can leave new recruits constantly worried about “where their next paycheck is coming from. Millennials want to work for agile and nimble and best-of-breed companies, but they also are looking for stability.”
3. Creating a family atmosphere. Infinite has “an extremely low attrition rate” in part, Govil said, because of its “family orientation” in which employees “feel a part of something bigger at the same time that they have an entrepreneurial attitude.”
At its facilities, Infinite hosts “family days” for workers which features an “Olympiad” of sports competitions among teams. The company also brings employees together to do charity work.
Mid-market companies are small enough to be nimble in their ideas and benefits, but large enough to compete on some levels with pay and benefits. Provide the right mix, and you will secure the best employees.