Securing a healthy and attractive recruitment and retention system in your business is a challenging process, which when perfected, will ensure that your current and future employees are satisfied.
Employee retention refers to an organizational goal of ensuring that employee turnover is diminished.
The idea is to ensure that talented employees continue working for a company long-term. Employee retention is focused on reducing turnover by creating a positive workplace culture that promotes employee satisfaction and engagement.
Retaining the top talent relies on employee recognition, strong benefits, a competitive salary, and ensuring a healthy work-life balance. A company must also ensure that its recruiting process is optimized, as convincing employees to remain in your company begins before they even join.
You might also hear employee retention referred to as 'staff retention.' Both terms have the same definition. When employees choose to stay at a company instead of pursuing other jobs, this relates to staff retention. Essentially, retention is the process that organizations use to keep their staff.
Ensuring that a current employee is as committed to your company as possible goes beyond the traditional understanding of what fostering satisfied employees involves. Let's look at five effective standards that you can include in your internal processes.
One of the key drivers of employee retention is workplace flexibility, but what exactly does this mean?
Flexibility is used as a general term to discuss conditions that differ from the conventional '9-5' structure. Workplace flexibility might mean the freedom to choose working hours, remote work options, part-time roles, or flexible scheduling.
The idea is that staff members have the freedom to choose where, how, and when they complete their work tasks.
According to a Forbes study, 70% of employees felt that flexible work makes a role more appealing to them. Additionally, 30% would favor flexible work over a pay rise. Stats like these should be considered when tailoring your recruitment process.
When employees have job satisfaction, they are far more likely to stay in a role, helping companies to reduce turnover and improve employee retention. On a side note, Millennial and Gen Z knowledge workers are incredibly specific regarding their personalized work requirements.
Staff benefits are one of the most critical drivers of employee retention. According to Caboodle, around three-quarters of employees believe that they will remain with employers that provide a solid benefits program.
Common employee benefits include annual and sick leave, retirement plans and contributions, childcare benefits, bonuses, and healthcare benefits.
Other desirable employee benefits include wellness packages and life insurance. Workplace perks can take many forms and can include a wide range of advantages, from discount programs to free healthy snacks.
Providing workplace benefits helps your employees feel valued and has many positive impacts on your company culture, which improves employee well-being and retention. With the right benefits, you'll enhance your employer value proposition and stand out from your competitors.
Career development opportunities play a key part in employee retention. If an employee feels that their role lacks progression, they are unlikely to stay. Career development opportunities might include extra training or sponsorship for educational courses.
Employers might provide mentorship schemes or skills-based workshops in line with their retention efforts. Professional development is a key component of the modern employee journey, and a strong sense of progress is key to anyone's personal satisfaction.
Supporting staff to establish their career goals is a fantastic way to boost retention. When you take an active interest in your employees and their goals, you'll improve loyalty and engagement. Even small gestures can make a difference to create a healthy and supportive company culture and employee career satisfaction.
A positive workplace culture has been associated with increased productivity, increased staff engagement, and improved employee retention. Poor company culture can disengage staff members, making them more likely to move on.
But what exactly makes a positive workplace culture?
Workplace culture refers to the character of the company. It incorporates elements like work practices, attitudes, goals, behaviors, and company values. Business leaders should focus on the following to create a positive culture:
There's a clear link between employee recognition and employee retention. According to Data from The HR Technologist, '63% of employees who are recognized are very unlikely to look for a new job.'
Unless employers recognize their staff, employees are unlikely to feel motivated, productive, or happy. Business leaders need to implement employee recognition programs in their retention processes or use employee recognition software.
Efforts like these can improve retention rates and keep current employees happy. The best-run companies ensure that the above five points are implemented in their retention processes.
Employee retention strategies are essential for several reasons.
Firstly, high turnover rates can be incredibly costly. Data from Gallup concluded that voluntary turnover costs American businesses a trillion dollars every year.
The research concluded that replacing an employee costs around double their annual salary. Failing to focus on employee retention will harm your bottom line.
The average recruitment process can be incredibly lengthy. Many functions are involved, including reviewing resumes, interviewing new hires, reference checking, and onboarding new employees.
Data from The Society For Human Resource Management discovered that it takes around 42 days to secure a position, on average. It's in the employer's best interests to avoid high turnover rates to save time and retain productivity levels.
Employee retention is about choosing the brightest employees for the job and then ensuring that they are in it for the long run. Not only do companies need to find people with the right skills and experience, but new hires who suit the company culture.
Bad hires can have an adverse effect on company culture and employee morale when their work standards and behavior clash with colleagues.
The pandemic left many otherwise engaged employees reevaluating their lives and their happiness.
In 2021, many workers left their current jobs searching for more fulfilling positions. Employers need to rethink their culture and employee retention strategies during this turbulent time.
So, what are some of the top reasons employees leave their jobs?
1. An overwhelming workload: Everyone from healthcare providers to office workers will begin taking strain when they have too much on their plate. A positive employee engagement is limited to what a person can physically and mentally handle.
2. Lack of recognition: A satisfied employee is one who has been recognized for their talents, skills, and contributions. Your retention efforts need to include strategies that make employees feel valued and needed.
3. Lack of flexibility: A flexible work schedule is essential for a healthy work-life. If employees have no control or say in how they do their work, they are bound to begin searching for positions that afford them more autonomy.
4. Overbearing bosses: No one likes being micromanaged, and overbearing managers can greatly harm your retention efforts. While employees need their managers' guidance, there is a point where they should be left alone to their own capable devices.
5. Poor relationships with co-workers: This can be difficult to manage, as not every employee will be as extroverted and sociable as you might like. You must add additional resources to ensure that everyone in your staff gets along happily and healthily.
6. No development opportunities or career path progression: If your employees do not enjoy ongoing development and training benefits, they might begin looking for job descriptions that boldly highlight this benefit.
No employee wants to feel stuck in their job postings, and the employee journey needs to include all manner of exciting and beneficial prospects.
7. Poor company culture: An unhealthy or toxic company culture is bound to boost your annual attrition rates. People simply do not want to be part of an unmanageable or repulsive working environment.
8. The work doesn't feel meaningful: Employees should feel like their work is meaningful and worthwhile on an ongoing process. Employees need to feel a sense of purpose, rather than just working to pay the bills or fulfill their managers' quotas.
9. Low salaries and lack of competitive compensation and benefits: Benefits like a retirement plan and health insurance are incredible pull factors for recruitment strategies. If an employee's current position doesn't include perks, there's a good chance that they're looking at recruitment efforts that do.
Certainly, all these retention practices can feel overwhelming in their execution, implementation, and maintenance. However, the retention benefits of things like ongoing training and an impressive compensation system are invaluable.
Lowering your employee retention rate means focusing on these key areas, seeking to make long-term improvements across your organization while lowering your turnover rate and employee dissatisfaction.
Companies should implement ongoing long-term employee retention and leadership development strategies.
You'll avoid expensive downtime and high turnover rates with retention strategies in place. Since turnover can negatively affect company culture, it's easy to see why long-term retention strategies are so important.
When unemployment levels are low, companies need to put more effort into improving their employee retention strategies.
During periods of low unemployment, employees have the power to pick and choose their preferred companies with a more accessible hiring process. The top talent can afford to shop around, compare and research. Apps like Good&Co help prospects search for jobs with the right company culture.
In 2021, candidates were not just looking at job benefits and salaries. They are assessing how companies match their values.
When you're experiencing high turnover rates, you'll need to revamp your employee retention rate tactics. Companies should collect feedback to determine why their current and experienced employees wish to move on.
Exit interviews can be helpful to gain valuable insights and enhance your staff retention strategies.
Employee retention is not a quick fix, however. Once you've implemented the relevant strategies, you'll need to maintain your success and progress. For a few ideas to support employee retention, try these:
The key to improving employee retention is to focus on long-term changes. When it comes to staff retention, conditions are changeable over time.
Perhaps employee wellness is part of your retention strategy? If so, it's not enough to offer just one well-being workshop and leave it there. You'll need to provide ongoing wellness programs, to continuously support your staff.
Once you've got your employee retention strategies in place, ensure that you evaluate your successes over time. Aim to assess the effectiveness of your strategies and make improvements where you can.
Analytics can help businesses to examine their successes and build on their weaknesses and employee experience. Many top companies use analytics for performance and retention, including Sysco, Best Buy, and Google (Harvard Business Review, 2010).
To maintain employee retention, it can help to ask staff for regular feedback. Ask your current employees what they like about working for the company and what they dislike.
Anonymous feedback can be helpful to find out how your staff really feels. When employees leave the organization, exit interviews can be helpful to gain key info. Example exit interview questions might be:
When you collect feedback from your existing employees, it's useful to focus on the theme of company culture. Improving your culture is a crucial aspect of retention.
A positive company culture can help to reduce staff turnover. Businesses that want to retain employees should seek to make continuous improvements.
While considering company culture, it's also vital to focus on diversity and inclusion. Creating a diverse and inclusive company is essential from a social justice perspective, and it also affects how your candidates perceive the company.
Research from Glassdoor concluded that more than 3 out of 4 job seekers and employees (76%) report that a diverse workforce is an important factor when evaluating companies and job offers.
Maintaining employee retention is an ongoing commitment. It's about establishing patterns and assessing these trends.
Have your turnover rates been high lately? If so, examine your data to figure out the determining factors.
To retain more employees, focus on offering workplace perks and benefits. When the top candidates compare companies, workplace benefits are a critical determining factor.
Even businesses with smaller budgets can offer desirable workplace benefits. A few inexpensive ideas include:
As you can see, not all workplace benefits have to be expensive. Even small startups can offer some attractive perks to retain the best people.
There are plenty of employee retention strategies that can reduce turnover and improve your bottom line. Here are five of the most effective employee retention strategies.
A growing number of employees are experiencing burnout and workplace-related stress. Many factors contribute from a heavy workload to long hours or lack of job satisfaction.
Besides offering healthy workplace conditions, employers can retain their staff by providing wellness support.
Healthways and Gallup created a definition of well-being measurement. They concluded that 'the five essential elements of well-being are purpose, social, financial, community and physical.
Companies can use workplace well-being software based on these elements. A few examples of popular workplace well-being tools include Wellable and Wellness 360.
From fitness programs to mental health workshops, there are many ways to support employee wellness.
Rewarding and recognizing your employees is a crucial employee wellness strategy. Employers might incentivize staff using special prizes or discounts.
Equally, it's enough to provide plenty of praise and celebrate the achievements of your staff. To support your employee recognition strategy there are many software tools that you can use. Try tools like Kazoo or Motivosity.
Helping your staff to feel valued is all about creating a positive company culture. When your employees feel recognized and appreciated, you'll improve retention as well as creativity, wellness, and your bottom line.
A lack of work-life balance is one of the top reasons why employees leave a company. To address the issue, it's important to promote a healthy work-life balance. There are plenty of ways that you can do so, including:
Staff are likely to leave a company if they feel that there is no room for progression. The best employee retention strategy is helping employees to grow.
There are many ways to support career development. You might pay for training opportunities or short courses. Mentorship programs can help employees to develop within their roles and keep on learning.
Provide regular one-to-one meetings with your staff. You can use these meetings to ask them about their career goals. Help employees design a roadmap to achieve their goals within your company.
Ensure that you provide feedback on employee performance. Constructive criticism can be helpful (so long as this feedback is approached correctly). Supporting career development is a great way to reduce staff turnover.
To improve staff retention, focus on positive leadership styles. Overbearing bosses and micromanaging are the fastest ways to high turnover rates. To keep staff happy, companies need to create a respectful culture.
One effective leadership style involves encouraging autonomous teams. By definition, 'Autonomous teams are workgroups granted the organizational latitude to establish their own internal goals and work practices,' (Ivey Business Journal, 2013).
Autonomous teams allow your staff more responsibility and freedom. As a result, you'll experience improved productivity levels and creative outcomes.
Positive leadership styles can lead to higher levels of job satisfaction. Research shows that other critical job satisfaction factors include: respectful treatment of all employees at all levels, compensation and job security according to SHRM.
According to Mckinsey, 'people who live their purpose at work are more productive than people who don't. They are also healthier, more resilient, and more likely to stay at the company.'
Employees want purpose, fulfillment, and meaningful work. Unless employers support these needs, they'll lose out on the top talent.
Organizations should start with the purpose of their business. Think about how your company contributes to society and help your employees engage with these values.
Focus on your existing CSR strategies, how these could be improved, and how could you involve your employees in the process? Improving your CSR strategies is also helpful to widen your reach and improve your reputation.
Modern consumers actively seek out socially responsible brands that support good causes.
Employee retention is integral to avoid expensive turnover and productivity lulls. Unless you focus on staff retention, you'll experience high turnover rates, which can disrupt your company culture and morale.
There are plenty of employee retention strategies you can explore, including workplace benefits, wellness programs, flexible conditions, and career development opportunities. Retaining the top talent is about using analytics to your advantage and helping your employees find meaning.
To maintain employee retention, it's vital that you make continuous improvements and use data from your exit interviews. In 2021, positive company culture was the key to success and growth.
Improving your company culture will support retention and ensure that you have a happy and healthy staff. Your workforce's well-being is crucial to sustaining long-term productivity and growth.