All businesses need to take employee retention and turnover rates seriously. Currently the turnover numbers are record-breaking, which is a huge concern for businesses big and small! People leave their jobs for a variety of reasons such as the need for a better work-life balance, to investigate new career opportunities, and for health and family issues.
Recently, the majority of workers who left their jobs did so to look for a better compensation package, a more desirable work culture and/or better career opportunities, they did not just throw in the towel and leave for no reason. The business who investigate why these people left can glean valuable information that can be used to reduce turnover, and reduce the related costs of on-boarding, re-training, etc. Additional reasons for turnover include:
- Lack of opportunities
- Toxic work environment
- Feeling burned out
- Not feeling supported
- Outside life event
(did you notice that 4 of the 5 reasons mentioned above are in YOUR control)
Slowing the speed of Turnover
Employee retention is, without a doubt, one of the most intense challenges facing today’s human resources department. Employee turnover will always happen, but creating the type of business where people want to stay is the key to long term success. Ask any HR professional, employee retention and reducing employee turnover requires more than a simple one time fix. It is a vital and ongoing process with many variables to consider for success. Here are five ideas to get you started.
- Employee Leadership & Management
Ensuring that each employee has a career vision within your company is an important part of keeping them happy and engaged. Employees need to know that there is opportunity for growth within your company, personal growth as well as professional growth, and helping them grow and develop is a vital part of keeping employees engaged. Remember, employees often rate job satisfaction as being as important as wages so keeping them growing in their position, and maybe even getting them ready for a position with added responsibility, is vitally important to job satisfaction, and employee retention. When employees have a clear vision of their career path and how it is to be navigated, it is a win for both employee and employer.
- Hiring With Your Future Culture In Mind
When hiring employees, salary and benefits often come first for a job seeker. Equally as important though is the prospective employee’s fit within the current culture of your company. To maintain a copacetic and efficient work environment it is important that a candidate has the personality and social skills to work well with management and other employees IN ADDITION to having the necessary skills to be successful in the position for when they are being considered. Groups that collaborate and work well together create a safe space in which they feel free to express opinions, ideas and plans that would otherwise go unheard, leading to higher rates of goal accomplishment and innovation.
- Provide Competitive Compensation
One of the best ways for employers to attract and retain top talent is by offering a competitive compensation package. Paying employees competitively can help your company grow, but since increasing salaries of your current employees is not always an option, consider providing other forms of compensation like performance bonuses, extra or flexible time off, additional (often low cost) health benefits, even the bosses parking space for a month in order to keep employee satisfaction high and employees happy and engaged.
- Building Confidence - Employee Leadership & Management
When bumps in the road arise, don't try to hide them. Employees of today expect transparency and would rather be told of a setback than be lied to, the latter of which sows distrust and contempt (bad…bad…bad). When problems arise and are discussed openly, especially when employees are offered opportunities to express doubts, concerns, and possible solutions, they become invested, engaged and enthused to be part of the solution and part of the team that was able to “turn things around”.
- Exit Interviews
And so we have come full circle. We began this discussion talking about the valuable information that businesses can glean from their employees which can be used to reduce turnover, and the related costs of on-boarding, re-training, etc.
The best way to understand why an employee is leaving your company is by asking them. Exit Interviews, when done openly and without judgment or derision toward the leaving employee, can prove invaluable in your quest for employee satisfaction and retention. The information gained in these interviews can guide management in their handling of and offerings to employees and can provide insight into possible problem employees and more importantly, problems with management as well as give management a “boots on the ground” view of what it is like to be an employee at your company.
Collecting this type of feedback can provide insights into where things are going well, where things are going wrong and in the end will increase your company’s ability to provide a positive employee experience, less employee turnover, reduced training/on-boarding costs, well, you get the picture.
Employee retention is, without a doubt, one of the most intense challenges facing today’s human resources department. Employee turnover will always happen, but creating the type of business where people want to stay is the key to long term success.