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What All Managers Need to Know About Employee Retention

By: Eleanor Hecks



Do you dread the process of finding a replacement to fill an open position? You likely do both because of the cost involved, the uncertainty about work ethic from the person you’re hiring and the lost time where you must train a new person to do the work.

Retaining the employees you have is much easier than seeking new hires. You may have to pay them a little more, but you’ll save time and costs in the long run by not constantly having a high churn rate.

What Can Managers Do to Enhance Employee Retention?

Gartner recently predicted employee turnover will jump 20% this year, with around 37.4 million people quitting their jobs. Experts refer to the current propensity of employees to leave as the Great Resignation.

What can you do to make your company look better than the others workers are fleeing from? Fortunately, there are a number of tactics that make people more likely to stick with you for the long-term.

1. Improve Company Culture

Is your company a good place to work? Do people look forward to seeing one another and putting in a team effort? If they dread coming into the office or even logging on remotely, then you have some work to do.

Improve company culture by working on team building activities. Make sure everyone is on the same page and they all feel valued for their efforts.

2. Excel at Training

Spend time training your employees so they feel equipped to handle the work thrown at them. In some industries, safety incidents cost employers billions of dollars annually. It’s vital to ensure your workers feel their well being is your top priority and you’ve given them the skills needed to avoid injury.

People also pay attention to whether you’re willing to invest in them. When you believe in someone,  you’re willing to pay for their education or send them to conferences where they can learn more skills.

Don’t worry that they’ll go to a competitor with their training. It might happen, but if you’re treating them well and have excellent company culture, they are more likely to stay with you. You can always let it be known that they should talk to you before accepting another position. You may have to hand out raises to compete but you’ll keep a skilled worker.

3. Show You Care

Think about what types of programs show you care about your employees. What matters most to them? If the majority of your staff is passionate about protecting the environment, offer them paid time off to volunteer with the organization of your choice.

Start programs other companies don’t have, like work sharing plans or hosting family fun days for their spouses and children.

4. Celebrate Staff

In a poll, only 26% of employees felt recognition was fair for the same performance levels. Around 74% feel the system is unfair and filled with favoritism. Whatever the truth might be, the perception can cause people to feel unsatisfied in their current positions.

Spend time celebrating both big and small successes. Recognize every employee throughout the year. Pass out gifts, company-wide recognition and have one-on-one meetings with each worker to show your appreciation.

5. Offer Perks

Your budget might demand you only pay a certain amount, but think about what perks you can offer throughout the year that other companies don’t. Do you have free parking or reimbursement? Give them an extra day off or free Fridays in the summer.

Some companies offer free memberships, discounts at popular restaurants and stores, an on-site gym, vacation funds and company cell phones. Think about what you can afford and talk to your workers about whether they prefer to receive those perks or a flat raise.

One example of a company offering a ton of perks is Google. They have nap pods, offer free coffee and snacks, provide training and offer any number of other unusual advantages to choosing to work for them. They attract the top and the best because of their company culture and numerous perks.

Be Kind

Probably one of the top things you can do as an employer is to actually care about the humans working for you. When you see your workforce as a family of sorts, you’re much more likely to institute policies in their best interest and be kind when you have to instigate a tough conversation. When people feel valued and cared about, they’re much more likely to hang around.

Published: June 22, 2022

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eleanor hecks

Eleanor Hecks

Eleanor Hecks is editor-in-chief at Designerly Magazine. Eleanor was the creative director and occasional blog writer at a prominent digital marketing agency before becoming her own boss in 2018. She lives in Philadelphia with her husband and dog, Bear.

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