Familiar with the phenomenon ‘The Great Registration’? From a pandemic to an epidemic, the Great Resignation is an ongoing economic trend where employees are voluntarily leaving their jobs in large masses – and it’s happening all around the globe. Why is this happening?
“As we recover from the pandemic, one thing is clear in the world of work – the dynamic between talent and employers has shifted,” Sander Van’t Noordene, CEO & Chair of the Executive Board, Randstad.
The main factor influencing the influx of career changes and resignations is simple: in a post-pandemic world, people are not willing to put up with a work environment where they are not happy because time is valuable.
In this article, Paytime is going to dive into the top 10 strategies you can use to increase employee retention.
Employee Retention strategy #1: Work-life balance
Ensuring your business enables work-life balance is key.
Think back to life during the pandemic – only essential workers were permitted, by law, to go into their ‘office’. This showcased a never-before-seen work-life balance, and changed the workforce for good. Although workers were stuck working from home, they were able to create a full time work schedule that incorporated hobbies, chores, and appointments. Due to this, employees are demanding more work-life flexibility, and are willing to change companies or careers if they do not get it.
Therefore, you must ensure the business processes you have in place:
- Acknowledge your employee is also a human being with a personal life
- Value your employees out-of-work commitments
- Never expect employees to work overtime, you can only ask
- When feasible, enable employees to work from their prefered location and trust them to do what must be done (until proven otherwise)
- Specifically for frontline workers, if feasible, if they have worked multiple night shifts one week, request they only work day shifts the next week
Employee Retention strategy #2: Employee benefits
Employee benefits will look different depending on the size of your business, the seniority of the employee, and the industry your business operates in. The current job market in Australia is an ‘employee-market’ – meaning, there’s a lot of available jobs and not enough staff to fill all the positions. Why? For two reasons:
- Due to the pandemic, we do not have as many international talent joining our workforce
- Due to the Great Resignation, people are switching careers that better align with their dream lives
The pandemic taught us that money isn’t everything – what good is money if you’re stuck indoors? There’s only so many Amazon orders you can look forward to…
Because of this, employees are more particular with the company they choose, and the employee benefits offered. As said, the benefits you offer should be specific to your company, but here are some ideas:
- Employee discounted services/goods
- Discounted services/goods for family and friends
- Health care
- Additional days off throughout the year or time in lieu
- Team events and outings
- Paid coffee or food
- Annual salary increase (above inflation rate)
Your benefits should be a healthy mix of monetary goods and tangible goods. Please note: superannuation, 20 annual days off a year, and sick leave are not an ‘employee benefit’ as these are required by law.
Employee Retention strategy #3: Career growth
When an employee joins your company, they are not only looking at the remuneration and employee benefits, they are also considering their career trajectory working for your business. We all know how tedious the recruitment process is, so for your benefit and for theirs, make sure you constantly provide individuals the opportunity to:
- Upskill: With development opportunities such as training courses or certs
- Climb the company ladder: Promote internally instead of recruiting externally
Employees want to be certain they will receive the opportunity to continue to grow as a professional in your company, so make sure you incorporate career growth and professional development into your staff retention strategies to reduce employee turnover and increase employee engagement.
Retention strategy #4: Good manager-employee relationship
There’s a number of factors that can influence an individual to resign, however, the most commonly occurring factor is colleague relationships and workplace dynamics. Full time employees will spend the majority of their work week at work. Additionally, frontline workers are often put in stressful or quick-paced situations – therefore, it’s crucial the work environment you build is welcoming and pleasant. When an employee begins dreading speaking to or working with a colleague, that’s when you may lose them to another company.
To ensure you pursue a strong manager-employee relationship, you can:
- Request consistent feedback
- Listen to the voice of the majority
- Hold training sessions on how to work with one another
- Request candidates to complete a psychometric assessment before hiring them, to ensure their personality suits those in your team
Employee Retention Strategy #5: Open communication
As mentioned in the point above, feedback and communication is key! You must build a work environment and company culture where employees feel safe in providing constructive feedback or discussing difficult matters. If you don’t, they will choose to resign instead of attempting to resolve the issues they are incurring.
Employee Retention Strategy #6: Give feedback
With the same respect to receiving and appreciating employee feedback, be sure to provide balanced feedback to your team and staff when appropriate. The key work being ‘balanced’. In order for employees to take on board constructive criticism without ill feelings, you must acknowledge the tasks they do well and the moments they excel – in a timely manner. Go out of your way to send an email congratulating them or give them a call. It requires little effort but massively increases their loyalty to the company and gratitude for their position.
Employee Retention Strategy #7: Personalized employee experience
Employees are individuals – and no two individuals are the same. Although we are similar by trait and design, as human beings, we all think differently, experience things differently, and feel things differently.
Take this into account when building your employee experiences – including your onboarding process. Don’t underestimate the impact of a personalised employee experience as a staff retention strategy. Why? Because no one forgets when they are treated well, and if you treat staff as individuals instead of workers they will reward you with hard work and loyalty. There’s no better way to retain employees!
Employee Retention Strategy #8: Long-term benefits
Commonly, long term benefits are associated with long-service leave, maternity leave, etc. However, for the purpose of this article, we want to question your approach to ‘long-term benefits’.
Be sure to acknowledge the time your employee has decided to stay in your business – employees that have grown with your business are your biggest asset because they have extensive knowledge of your company’s value, mission, processes, and growth. They are highly valuable team members, and some potential rewards may include:
- Extra time off
- Celebrations on their work anniversary
- Public acknowledgment of their achievements within the business
- Additional responsibility and flexibility
Employee Retention Strategy #9: Support employee-wellbeing
This is a simple retention strategy, but quite effective. This retention strategy ties into open communication, work-life flexibility, and personalised employee experience.
Life is unpredictable and, as your employees are real life human beings, they will experience ups and downs. You cannot expect an emotive sapien to leave this weight at the door, so you must support them in whatever manner is within scope of reason. You can achieve this by asking questions relating to their personal life and mental wellbeing in your feedback sessions, creating a ‘mental wellbeing day’, and creating a work environment where employees can be honest about how they are feeling and if they need a reset. Remote work does not diminish your duty of employee wellbeing.
In an employee-dominated market, employees are not willing to work for a company who does not demonstrate care towards them as individuals. Therefore, not only will this employee retention strategy create a strong brand reputation, but you will also reduce the risk of employees getting burnt out or sourcing a new job as a wellbeing ‘reset’.
Employee Retention Strategy #10: Earned Wage Access (EWA)
This employee retention strategy ties into the above nine strategies. Earned Wage Access refers to enabling employees to access the money they have earned, regardless of the day of the week. Higher inflation rates have spiked home loan repayments and everything to do with the cost of living. This has put many Australiains in a difficult financial situation.
By activating EWA, your employees do not have to wait until their weekly, fortnightly, or monthly pay day – everyday can be pay day. Put simply, employees can receive the pay for the hours they have worked which enables them to take control of their finances. To learn more about EWA, and how to integrate this for free within your business, click here.