There are not many things more frustrating for a business owner or manager than to hire a new employee, train them, develop them, and then have them leave the organization for another job.
The time it takes to recruit, hire, and train an employee – along with the associated costs – result in a very real burden for employers.
This is not to mention, the work slowdown when a job is in transition or gearing up.
For instance, if you have a great employee who is designated to help train new employees, they are taken off of their post to train.
So in essence both employees are working at a slower pace than when both positions are filled with trained and seasoned employees.
This issue was less prevalent just a few short years ago when employees were grateful to have a job and willing to do whatever it takes to keep it.
Today the market is much different.
Unemployment levels are at 4.5 percent – the lowest it has been in more than ten years.
The job-hopping statistics are interesting. An estimated 34% of employees say they plan to leave their current job in the next 12 months.
So what is an employer to do?
5 Tips For Retaining Your Top Employees
1. Foster a Culture of Engagement
Create a culture that fosters employee engagement in an effort to retain your best employees. There are many things that drive a culture of engagement:
- Strong Vision
- Consistent Communication
- Supervisor Interaction
- Employee Development
- Team Environment
- Culture of Trust
- Clear Expectations
- Reward and Recognition
- Employee Satisfaction
- Competitive Pay and Benefits
Be proactive and figure out what employees need to feel valued.
Clarify the vision of the organization and help employees understand how what they do impacts the success of the organization.
2. Open Communication Process
Good communication can eliminate many organizational problems and can influence a positive work environment.
Employees have a vested interest in what challenges and successes their employer has.
Organizational leaders should make a conscious effort to share pertinent information about the organization with employees.
This kind of communication makes them feel valued and increases commitment to the organization.
3. Encourage Employee Participation
Employees devote a large portion of their lives to the organization that employs them.
Allow their involvement in problem-solving and decision making as one way to make them feel appreciated and given the opportunity to influence corporate direction.
There are lots of survey software available. Google docs has a free survey tool that you can customize for your organization.
You never know what you will learn until you ask!
4. Provide Competitive Compensation
When organizations go through economic challenges, it is common to cut compensation and benefits as a way to conserve resources.
However, when pay is impacted by cost-cutting, employees quickly lose their zeal and can be tempted to explore other employment options.
If salary freezes or salary cuts are inevitable, good communication and employee involvement in solving revenue problems can help workers understand the issues and ultimately be part of the solution.
5. Reward and Recognition
Everyone appreciates when someone acknowledges a job well done.
When employees perform well, it should be reflected in their performance appraisal, and ultimately merit increases.
These are important parts of a structured performance management process.
Employee contribution is validated when employees are recognized for a job well done which in turn makes them want to do more.
Simple rewards and recognition go a long way in making employees feel valued and appreciated.
Employers need to pay attention to employee issues and keep them engaged.
This is the best defense against losing valuable employees to the business down the road.
Losing top talent is never easy, but it is even more frustrating to learn that there are things you could have done to prevent employee defection.
Organizations are investing too many resources in their top performers to risk losing them.
Today might be a good day to talk to your employees and revisit how you manage, communicate, and reward them.