By Brianne McClure
Northampton, Mass–NewsDirect–Keysight Technologies
In today’s evolving business environment, technology leaders are looking for ways to accelerate innovation ahead of customer expectations. Investing in professional development through mentoring is a valuable strategy that benefits employees and the organization as a whole. In fact, 70% of Fortune 500 companies offer mentorship programs.
Leslie Camino, Senior Director of Corporate Leadership Development and Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Keysight Technology, states that mentoring plays a major role in developing talent, building connections and improving careers. Individuals sometimes lack confidence, feel that they need permission to find a mentor, or are not sure how to do it. Therefore, facilitating a process through an enterprise program can have a significant impact. This video provides tips for Leslie to find a mentor who can accelerate your career.
In honor of the National Mentoring Month, tech companies shared eight ways to increase their competitive advantage by hiring employee mentorship.
Technology Mentoring: Eight Key Benefits for Employers
1. Attract and maintain STEM talent
In 2022, it is likely that there will be a continuation of major resignations or major remodeling that is driving the increase in turnover rates for companies. The Fast Company reported that 23% of Americans hired plan to quit their jobs within the next 12 months. Especially in the STEM space, which faces a global skills gap, it is more important than ever to attract talent and re-provide opportunities for professional development to employees. Mentoring can help inspire the next generation of researchers, scientists, physicists, and engineers who will shape the future of technology.
The mentorship program will appeal to a wide range of candidates and help you distinguish your company in the highly competitive job market of the technology industry. Mentoring also maintains current employee involvement. According to the CNBC / SurveyMonkey Workplace Happiness Survey, 91% of employees with mentors are happy with their work, and happy employees stay in the company for a long time.
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2. Retain institutional knowledge
One of the biggest drawbacks of employee turnover in the technology industry is the loss of valuable institutional knowledge. Mentorship programs help reduce turnover by ensuring that employees have the career growth opportunities they need to feel engaged and challenged.
Mentoring also improves communication between employees and ensures that expertise remains in the organization when employees leave the company. The Keysights Emeritus program allows employees who are about to retire to leave a legacy by guiding the next generation. This not only supports succession development and knowledge transfer, but also facilitates cross-generational collaboration between employees and new talent at the end of their careers.
3. Create a comprehensive work environment
Designed specifically for groups that are undervalued in the tech industry, mentor programs help create a comprehensive work culture where everyone can be who they really are. Studies have shown that mentoring has a positive impact on the careers and professional abilities of women and people of color.
Liz Ruetsch (and avid mentors and mentees), general manager of Keysight’s Quantum Engineering Solutions, wanted to create a platform for women interested in Quantum. So in 2021, Keysight partnered with OneQuantum.org to launch Women in Quantum. This mentoring program brings together students, professors and employees from Keysight and other companies to share knowledge and ensure that female voices are heard in this important emerging area.
4. Increase the diversity of leadership roles
Mentorship can provide opportunities and support for groups that are often underestimated in the technology industry’s leadership position. According to a survey by the Cornell School of Industrial Labor Relations, mentoring programs can increase the number of minority representatives in managerial positions by up to 24%.
Keysight has a history of raising promising employees to senior management through mentoring. Our Chief Operating Officer, Satish Dhanasekaran, Chief Administrative Officer Ingrid Estrada, and Ee Huei Sin, President of the Electronic Industrial Solutions Group, have all graduated from our next-generation leadership program.
Leslie has a solid track record of developing and teaching future leaders. In 2021, more than 60% of the participants in the Emerging Leaders Program were women. This is important because you are likely to be promoted to executive position in the future.
5. Build a sense of community
Employees with a sense of belonging are more likely to feel motivated, communicate better with colleagues, and empathize with the company’s mission. For example, Keysights’ New Employee Mentoring Program can help you combine new employees with non-direct team members to expand your network and learn how to succeed in your organization.
We hear a lot of stories about individuals being surprised by the mentor’s candidness, shared experience, and simply what they feel is important, Leslie said. It is powerful to have someone take the time to give them their wisdom and knowledge to help you succeed.
6. Accelerate technological innovation
Innovation happens when a technology team is made up of employees from diverse backgrounds who feel value and encouragement. Mentoring programs, especially those designed for underrepresented groups, help tech companies inspire innovative thinking.
Menties who feel supported can confidently share their ideas and collaborate with others. Second, incorporating a variety of fresh perspectives into the product development process ultimately leads to more powerful technology solutions that appeal to a wider customer base.
7. Improve employee productivity
In the fast-paced world of technology, it’s important for employees to quickly understand the operations and protocols of an organization, especially their implicit rules. Mentors can ask mentors questions and receive feedback on their work. This allows the mentee to perform his role more effectively. Mentors, meanwhile, teach mentors new ways to increase productivity and promote a growth mindset.
Mentoring is especially useful for new employees who can increase their productivity with the right support. According to Leslie, our mentoring program makes new employees feel welcome, learn about Keysight’s culture, and quickly add value.
8. Empower mentors
Employees who are mentors find it more valuable and their work more meaningful. This allows you to take on a high leadership role and increase engagement. Mentors are often required to be vulnerable and honest when providing mentees with the company’s historical knowledge. This allows for a good relationship in both workplaces. C-suite executives often want to engage with young talent to get a glimpse of other ranks in the company.
Mentoring isn’t just one way for both parties to gain something from their relationship and share their knowledge and skills, Leslie said. Participating in our program reminds mentors how exciting it is to work at Keysight when looking at Keysight with a fresh eye.
Leading employees to success through mentoring
Mentoring provides a unique and rewarding opportunity for technology companies to empower their employees, create a comprehensive workplace culture and drive innovation. Companies can design mentorship programs to address strategic goals that move the organization forward, such as identifying promising talent, hiring new hires, increasing leadership diversity, and creating a sense of belonging. In the highly competitive technology industry, there is no doubt that companies that invest in employee professional development opportunities will be successful in the long run.
About the author
Brianne McClure is a brand and marketing expert with over 15 years of experience, delivering compelling stories and thought leadership through written language and digital experiences.
See Keysight Technologies’ additional multimedia and ESG storytelling on 3blmedia.com
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