10 Ways To Improve Employee Retention
Employee turnover in a business is natural, but if you’re experiencing a high number of employees leaving your business, have you considered why?
Loyal, longstanding employees can prove to be a wonder to any business: from understanding the business inside out, to being a shoulder to new employees and offering a strong consistent for clients.
The fight for top talent is becoming increasingly competitive, with employee needs shifting, meaning that if you aren’t keeping your team happy, a competitor will quickly steal them away.
To help you keep hold of your employees, here’s ten tips that will ensure they stay around for years to come:
Focus On Workplace Culture
Workplace culture is the hardest thing to change and often the most important element in job satisfaction and employee retention. Consider hiring the employees to fit the culture you’re trying to create: whether this be formal or laid back.
All businesses aim to promote a positive workplace culture, however team gossiping can easily creep in and spread like a virus, poisoning the atmosphere. Stopping this before it spreads is important to prevent your team from fracturing, and work quality and output dropping. This is often one of the hardest things a manager has to do.
Have A Clear Work From Home Policy
The Office of National Statistics reported that flexi-time in working environments in the UK has risen by 12.35% between 2012 and 2016; with a prediction that 50% of roles will allow working from home by 2020.
Whilst working from home is deemed as a core benefit to a number of employees it also allows a business to:
Have lower overheads
Promote wider team morale
Improve their environmental impact
Select employees from a wider talent pool
Fear of losing control and underperformance are the most common reasons businesses don’t offer working from home policies; however there are a number of tools such as Trello, Slack and Asana that help teams to stay in continual contact and on-top of their tasks, wherever they’re located.
From an employee perspective, working for home is believed to help improve mental health, can reduce childcare costs and transport costs. It also gives them more control over their day to day and gives them a sense of freedom and trust.
Schedule Annual Pay Reviews
Pay is important to everyone - there’s no denying this… and with rising living costs, employees are becoming increasingly frustrated with static salaries and pay structures.
Six monthly performance reviews, coupled with an annual pay review will allow employers the opportunity to create a clear plan for their employees of what they need to achieve in order to get a pay rise. Many offer a tiered approach to pay reviews/rises, with a percentage increase depending on performance levels across the year.
As an employee, don’t be afraid to ask for a pay review if you believe you truly deserve one - just be prepared with the facts and figures. The worst thing an employer can do is refuse to hear this conversation, as there will be a competing company happy to offer that little more for your talent.
Be Approachable & Transparent
An open door policy is invaluable in creating a strong workplace culture and getting your employees to open up to you with their issues. However, keeping their confidentiality is important, as once this is broken they’re unlikely to trust you with their issues again, leading to built up problems and an increased likelihood of leaving.
Investing in your employees shows that you believe in their skills and potential progression. There are a number of training events in every industry throughout the year (a number of them are free!), so this doesn’t need to be a costly exercise.
Considering having your top talent train your newer team members too. You’re giving your experienced staff more responsibility (which makes them feel special), whilst ensuring that your new recruits are trained up the the standard of your business.
A clear training plan for each employee should always be provided, complete with date of when each training element should be completed by. You should also allow hours within the working week for training.
Pay-day pizza and beers on a Friday aren’t the perks which will differentiate your company from its competitors anymore. There are a number of perk apps such as Perkbox and Perkpal which offer cinema discounts, gym discounts and money saving opportunities for your team; which is considered a nice perk.
Why not go one step further though, and put an Employee Incentive Scheme in place providing your staff with a unique rewards and recognition scheme based on their performance. These incentives could be anything from a skiing weekend to a stunning city break. These breaks are not only special, but give you employees the chance to make some wonderful memories that they associate with your company.
Show Progression Opportunities
Internal senior level hires show the team that there’s a strong progression opportunity within the business; pushing them to achieve more. If they believe there’s a ceiling for progression, their time with the company becomes more of a stopwatch, than a timeline - meaning they’re counting down their days, rather than pushing to achieve the next level.
Hire The Right People
Hiring the right people for the business from the get go is key to retention. Consider candidates that show interest in growing with your company, rather than looking purely for experience. Don’t be put off by those that have been in a number of role though, as often this is for progression - if you do have concerns, then raise them in the interview.
New hires should also fit in with the team culture you’ve created. There will always be exceptions, but if your team is extremely vibrant and loud, someone who prefers to work in a quiet environment may not be the right fit.
Empower The Team
Everyone likes being recognised for their work and a simple “well done” can go an awful long way. If you use an internal comms system, why not publicly congratulate your team members for good results on this. Even consider a small voucher for exceptional work.
On the other hand, deal with poor work performance in private and always provide a plan for your staff of how you’re going to help them improve. Knowing that you believe in them will make them strive to succeed.
Handle Turnover In The Right Way
Staff turnover is natural, people will leave and sometimes there’s nothing you could have done about it. Remain professional when an employee leaves, no matter how hurt (or annoyed) you are by it.
If your team see you reacting in a negative way to someone expressing their interest in leaving, then they’re less likely to speak with you when they are unhappy, meaning that your chance to save them is gone.
Improving employee retention rates doesn't have to be difficult. By being a positive role model for your team, you'll be more likely to understand what they need and where their pain points are, meaning that you can keep them happy and productivity at a high.