What is Employee Retention and How to Improve It?

Employee Retention

Employee retention refers to a company’s capacity to keep its personnel on board long term. Conversely, employee turnover occurs when people quit their positions for other opportunities or causes.

Increasing employee retention is intrinsically tied to company performance. Having the right number of quality employees that want to stick around for longer than a couple of months makes it more feasible to accomplish corporate objectives across the board.

All things considered, replacing a lost employee can cost anywhere between 6 and 9 months of that person’s salary. Employee turnover and staff retention are caused by a variety of factors. There are generational differences, radical changes in the workplace, and issues surrounding the economy.

Decrease employee turnover and keep the talent you need to run your business by implementing some of the employee retention tactics listed below.

Offer Continuous Development Opportunities

continuous training and education opportunities

Many businesses don’t provide their employees with continuous training and education opportunities and instead bring in new individuals from outside the company. 

This phenomenon has only become more prominent with the rise of remote or hybrid workforces. Many people are now able to apply for jobs that don’t call for relocation and are willing to accept a lower salary as a tradeoff for that kind of flexibility.

However, workers who receive ongoing development opportunities feel appreciated by their employers and tend to be more inclined to continue working for them. The fact that their company invests in their capacity building makes them feel like they genuinely have a role to play in the overall success of the business.

When there are no opportunities for skill advancement or any other kind of professional improvement, employees lose interest in their jobs much more quickly, and are therefore less motivated to stick around. Prioritizing new (cheaper) recruits over existing employees creates the same effect.

Tips for Development Options

Foster employee retention by collaborating with each employee (or have line managers do this with their subordinates) to define individual growth roadmaps with specific milestones and objectives. This collaboration provides workers with a target to aim for and is a powerful motivator, especially when they have a clearly defined route for future promotions. 

Professional courses, training programs, and other relevant external resources are also great methods of proving to your workforce that their efforts are valuable to you. Mentoring increases retention, so consider establishing a mentorship scheme within the company that runs on a yearly basis and gives lots of different workers a chance to apply.

Prioritize Employee Wellness

Employee wellness

If a company promotes a culture of overtime work, tight deadlines, and never-ending meetings, the mental health of its employees can take a drastic hit. This culture can subsequently impact their productivity, motivation, and willingness to stay on board.

Showing your employees that their mental well-being is important to you is essential for employee retention. One of the best ways to develop a healthier workplace culture is to simply be empathetic and open to your employees’ concerns surrounding their work arrangements. 

Above all, implementing the changes needed to alleviate the negative effects that work may have on your workers’ mental health is key to maintaining employee engagement and motivation. 

Work-Life Balance

It goes without saying that workers will operate more effectively when they are well rested and have enough time to take care of themselves and their families.

Ensure that your team members have the capacity to deliver their best work by insisting on normal work hours, establishing regulations for working on weekends, and maintaining sensible work-from-home arrangements.

Keep an eye out for signs of burnout. Give people time off and find additional ways to prioritize their personal lives. Examine the extent to which your work schedule fosters a positive work-life balance and then adjust accordingly. In this matter, send SMS alerts about urgent tasks only during working hours, and send reminders to keep a healthy work-life balance.

Be Receptive of Feedback

Staff feedback

Giving your staff feedback is one thing, but you also must be open to receiving it yourself. When staff members don’t feel their opinions are valued, they naturally presume that upper management isn’t interested in advancing the business or pursuing worthwhile initiatives.

Even if you do give them the chance to voice their opinions or suggest improvements, many employees still tend to believe that nothing will change — especially if, historically, nothing has ever changed as a result of their feedback.

Always keep in mind that chances for receiving both public and private feedback are necessary. Request input from staff members on critical initiatives and project planning. Their hands-on experience with your company speaks for itself when it comes to the value of the insight they can provide.

It also never hurts to express gratitude to the individuals who proactively provide their input. Establish a culture where employees feel free to voice their opinions and reward them for it by acknowledging their efforts.

Pro tip: Create annual reports to discover how happy your employees are overall, and what interests of theirs you should pay attention to. For example, employee retention on software teams research helps companies understand if their developers are satisfied at work, and which factors influence the lack of satisfaction the most.

It could be a number of things: salary, benefits, work-life balance, work location, etc. Understanding what your employees need in the first place, helps your HR develop mechanisms to improve employee happiness.

Make Employees Feel Included

Achieve a culture of inclusiveness

There are no shortcuts to achieve a culture of inclusiveness; you must adopt a top-down strategy in all areas, from recruiting and leadership assessment to professional development and performance monitoring.

This strategy can often be a challenge, especially if you have dozens of people working for you at various levels of seniority and responsibility. Since nobody likes to feel left out or unheard, you must consistently provide assurances that each team member contributes significantly to achieving company goals.

Simple innovations include giving everyone a chance to contribute to the discussion during meetings, or privately messaging some of the quieter members of your team to ask for their input. Make sure that everyone is in the loop when it comes to important company decisions. 

Enhancing this feeling of being part of a collective can increase the trust and loyalty you receive from your workers, which can also reduce employee turnover.

Acknowledge and Reward Their Effort

Encourage staff retention

Shining a light on top talent is a great way to encourage staff retention. No matter how busy things get around the office, make it a point to celebrate any noteworthy accomplishments, whether it’s a project that your team finishes ahead of schedule or a work anniversary of someone who has been at the company for several years. 

Employee retention is significantly influenced by extra benefits and incentives. These incentives demonstrate that your company is aware of the changing business and economic climate in the world. 

Benefits like health insurance, for instance, ensure employees can receive proper treatment if they are ill. Additional benefits include access to corporate promotions, fitness discounts, or even free catering in the office. 

In order to incorporate benefits that are in line with employee preferences, find out what they want you to provide and see whether it is possible to make those suggestions a reality.

Establish a Reward System

Having internal award programs where workers are rewarded for their hard work is another way to improve employee retention. This strategy shows employees that you appreciate what they do for your company. This alsow gives them something small but significant to look forward to each time they choose to go beyond the expected.

Final Thoughts

Even with the best employee retention incentives in place, some team members will leave your company earlier than you might prefer. The key is to make that choice a little more difficult. 

If workers leave your company feeling appreciated and supported, there is a high likelihood that they will recommend your company to other great candidates. Moreover they can consider the option of returning to work for you again someday.

Author Bio:

Nina Petrov

Nina Petrov is a content marketing specialist, passionate about graphic design, content marketing, and the new generation of green and social businesses. She starts the day scrolling her digest on new digital trends while sipping a cup of coffee with milk and sugar. Her white little bunny tends to reply to your emails when she is on vacation.

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