Employee turnover is a major thorn in the side of organizations for a variety of reasons.
Not only does it hurt company culture as employees have to see their co-workers leave either voluntarily or through dismissal, but it also drains resources in three major ways. Accountemps reported that turnover is costliest in the amount of productivity lost, the resources it takes to train new hires, and the process of recruiting talent.
As talent shortages continue to rage on in the workplace market, retaining top talent should be top of mind for leaders.
The best way for company leadership to retain employees is to develop a comprehensive employee retention strategy that aims to improve job satisfaction and employee engagement.
The Importance of an Employee Retention Strategy
The benefits of employee retention for your organization are numerous. An employee retention strategy works to ensure employees are satisfied with their jobs so they stay with your company long term.
Keeping the retention rate high in your business maintains high productivity and contributes to the success of your organization. This is because a great deal of time, money, and resources goes toward hiring and training new employees to fill vacant positions.
Without an employee retention strategy, you may find your business becoming a revolving door of employees. This ends up costing you more money and time that you may not have. It also strains your other employees who have to double their workload to cover for missing employees.
Creating an employee retention strategy based on your employees’ needs is proactive instead of reactive. It gives you the opportunity to fix problems before they arise to retain good employees who get you the results you need to keep your business running smoothly.
The Basics of an Employee Retention Strategy
An employee retention strategy should provide your employees with a sense of fulfillment in the workplace, and they should offer and encourage personal growth and development. Some of the basics of good employee retention strategies include:
Fostering Emotional Intelligence in Leadership
Emotional intelligence is the foundation of any employee retention strategy. Emotionally intelligent leaders are aware of and in control of their emotions, and they handle interpersonal relationships fairly and empathetically.
Leaders who have high emotional intelligence let team members know that they are cared for as people, rather than just as employees. An employee retention strategy should motivate emotionally intelligent leaders who understand the value of recognizing and appreciating employees.
Sharing Appreciation, Recognition, and Feedback
Focusing on your employees’ strengths and positive aspects of their character will create confidence. This element of an employee retention strategy can be customized and tweaked according to the needs of your employees and your organization.
Without these three basic necessities, your employees are likely to feel like they don’t matter to your company and may seek employment elsewhere.
Showcasing Mission, Vision, and Values
Establishing a basis for common goals inspires your employees to be engaged and driven by a higher purpose. Share your company’s motivations and passions for why you do what you do. Infuse the mission, vision, and values into tasks, projects, and company events to keep your team on track with them.
Building Trust and Confidence
Your strategy should have elements that build trust and confidence in the leadership of your company. Employees want to know that they are in good hands with a leadership team that knows what they are doing.
Essentially, be the kind of leader who employees want to follow, and don’t develop a strategy that you wouldn’t follow yourself.
7 Retention Strategies Guaranteed to Keep Top Talent at Your Company
Here are seven employee retention strategies for you to use so you can keep the best talent at your company.
Hire the Right People
About 80 percent of turnover is due to hiring the wrong people. Start the hiring process with the job descriptions you post on job search engines. Make sure your job description and the job expectations are clear so you can attract qualified and interested candidates.
In interviews, go beyond the textbook questions and ask questions that demonstrate a candidate’s personality, values, and character. This helps you to see if they will fit in well with your company culture.
Everyone appreciates acknowledgment. We are hard-wired, as humans, to experience positive feelings when we are acknowledged. Celebrate even the small wins to focus on gratitude and positivity. The goal is to focus on building more good habits, rather than simply getting rid of bad habits.
Creating an environment that celebrates the good automatically encourages employees to continue doing good work.
Provide Unique Benefits
The workplace market is highly competitive and if you want to remain a top employer that retains employees, you’ll need more than your standard benefits. Offer employees something they can’t get anywhere else.
For instance, you may implement an unlimited vacation benefit or provide comprehensive professional development programs that are invaluable to your employees.
Balance Your Employees’ Workload
Burnout sabotages your efforts to retain employees. A huge contributor to annual workforce turnover is burnout, with about 20 to 50 percent of employees quitting each year due to this workplace issue.
Give your employees enough time to complete their work and organize their work well enough so that they can manage their agenda accordingly. Encouraging team members to take breaks and time off helps to reduce your employees’ stress levels and may help to retain them for longer periods of time.
Assign Mentors to New Employees
It’s easy for new employees to feel lost when they first start a new job. They may have a lot of questions within their first couple of months on the job. Assign them a mentor that they can rely on to help them when they have questions so they don’t have to go to different team members every time they need some information.
This also helps them to connect to at least one person they work with so they feel more secure in their position at your company. It also adds to job satisfaction later on since they’ll know what is expected of them and how to do their jobs well.
Provide Growth and Development Opportunities
Care about your employees’ long term success by offering career development, training, or education opportunities. A recent LinkedIn Learning report found that 94 percent of employees will stay at a company when their career is invested in.
By providing your employees with career development opportunities, you are allowing them to expand their skill set so they can help your team become more successful in the long term.
Build a Health and Wellness Program
Your employees are unlikely to feel satisfied in their positions if they feel like they are sacrificing their mental and physical wellbeing. Make an effort to show your employees that their health matters by building a health and wellness program.
Find out what wellness initiatives are important to your employees, and craft a plan to implement these initiatives separately or partner with a company that takes a holistic approach to wellness. For instance, Gympass offers your employees an easy way to feel good with a network of thousands of gym and studio partners, dozens of wellness apps, and access to personal training – all in one easy-to-use app.
5 Tips For Retaining Top Talent and Boosting Job Satisfaction
Here are five tips that will help you boost job satisfaction so you can retain top talent.
Develop a Positive Company Culture
The culture at your company is influenced by its leaders and their behaviors. Their values, goals, and attitudes will shape the character of your organization. Your company culture starts with a clear mission and set of core values, respect, workplace involvement, positivity, and transparency.
Work on your workplace culture to ensure you have employees who are satisfied with their jobs and can connect to their work in a meaningful way.
Communicate Purpose and Passion
People have a desire to do work that is meaningful to them. If they believe their work matters, they are more likely to be engaged, they learn faster, and they have a sense of fulfillment. A company’s leaders are responsible for connecting their employees to purpose.
Leaders should focus on nurturing employee relationships, providing resources for personal and professional growth, and talking to employees about their impact on the organization.
Give Employees the Tools They Need to be Successful
It is frustrating for employees to try to work at companies that don’t have the right tools and resources to help them succeed in their positions. Make sure your employees have the skills, technology, and support they need to finish their tasks and projects successfully.
This doesn’t mean you need to micromanage or hand-hold employees. Ask your employees what tools they need to be successful instead of leaving them to figure it out.
This encourages them to take ownership and allows them to think critically about how they can be more effective.
Send Out Job Satisfaction Surveys
You may have a general idea of how satisfied your employees are based on their behavior, but sending out a survey provides you with more detail about which areas employees are most or least satisfied with.
Sending out a job satisfaction survey helps you to identify key issues that need to be changed or improved. Without these surveys, you may find the leadership team wasting their time by fixing the wrong things about the workplace.
Implement Social Responsibility Efforts
Customers and employees are more socially conscious than ever. Job seekers want to work for a company that aligns with their values and supports causes that are important to them. If you want to attract and retain talent, you’ll need to have a socially conscious image. More importantly, you’ll need to act on your social conscious image.
Include your employees in social efforts that matter to them, and allow them to vote on an organization or cause to help. Contributing to something your employees care about adds to their passion and increases job satisfaction and success.
The Best Employee Retention Program Examples
Here are real-world examples of companies that have excellent employee retention programs.
Whole Foods has one of the highest retention rates in the grocery industry. This is because their CEO, John Mackey, focuses on allowing the importance of self-expression at work.
They also have a number of other successful practices that make a job with unpredictable hours and limited benefits a desirable option for employees. Some of these employee retention practices include:
- Establishing a mission and values driven culture.
- Empowering employees by encouraging decision making and innovation.
- Offering individual and team incentives for good performance and behavior.
- Promoting growth opportunities laterally and vertically within the organization.
Charles Schwab cares about the financial future of its clients and its employees. They offer their employees unique benefits that look out for their future.
Their employee retention program focuses on:
- Offering an excellent 401 (k) matching system that can be increased with the employee recognition program.
- Providing a comprehensive corporate bonus plan.
- Enabling employees to help other employees.
- Offering free financial consultations, workshops, and support.
Uber is the world’s largest ride-sharing service that offers its employees attractive benefits, perks, and compensation packages. In the UK, Uber’s employee retention strategy includes an excellent wellness program that supports their staff’s mental and physical wellbeing.
Their employees get access to Gympass – the world’s largest fitness platform – that offers unlimited access to thousands of gyms, studios, and activities. All they need is the easy-to-use Gympass app to check in and track progress.
Their employees also get flexible work schedules and 100 hours of paid vacation time per year so they can travel, explore, and take care of their mental wellbeing by having enough time to rest.
When employees feel good working at your company, they are more likely to stay. Most employees spend more time working than they do completing any other personal tasks or projects. Offering them ways to maintain their physical and mental wellbeing is the best way to ensure they come into work feeling motivated and positive.
Gympass is a holistic wellbeing platform that contributes positively to employee engagement and job satisfaction since the network of gyms and wellness apps provides an easy way for employees to boost their personal development that will extend to multiple areas of their lives.
Employers that provide ways for their employees to focus on their wellbeing can be sure to retain their top talent who contribute to a positive workplace culture.
The Gympass Editorial Team empowers HR leaders to support worker wellbeing. Our original research, trend analyses, and helpful how-tos provide the tools they need to improve workforce wellness in today's fast-shifting professional landscape.