Effective employee retention requires a set of holistic techniques that adds to the overall growth and productivity of a company. The benefits of employee retention are numerous, and companies are increasingly seeking to inculcate retention practices. Employee retention is more than just keeping employees; it needs to instil a sense of loyalty and commitment as well.
Experts in the field of Human Resource have come up with various theories to understand the phenomenon of employee retention. These are based on the idea that both the employer and the employee must work together to make the work experience smoother. Once that is achieved, customer relations and experience gain exceptional progress, and the company harnesses multi-dimensional gains.
Thus, it is no surprise that one of the key management goals is to achieve employee retention successfully. To do this, companies employ various practices that are suitable to the organization’s needs and goals. Companies at different stages in their careers might follow a variety of different techniques and methods. One needs to note that stagnation in employees’ personal growth could end up bearing heavy costs, both material and quality-wise. It is essential to create an environment in which employees feel connected to the work they are doing. This ensures that they are proactive and deliver more than the bare minimum.
If you feel your company is at risk to lose valuable employees, you need to act fast to ensure that it does not happen. Listed below are the top 10 best practices for employee retention, that are aimed at increasing employee engagement and satisfaction. These are a set of inclusive practices that will lead to increased productivity, and growth in customer satisfaction as well.
Hire the right candidates :
A study from the recruiting platform jobvite shows that around 30% of freshly acquired employees leave within the first 90 days. This would mean a huge loss for the company both in terms of money and time. Such things happen mostly due to misplaced hiring, or a lack of company initiative to make the employees feel confident about their job prospects.
To ensure that the right candidates are hired, one has to examine if the applicants will be a good fit for the cultural ethos of the company. Skills and expertise can be acquired, but candidates must understand the company values and targets. This should be reflected in the hiring process, by asking questions that are more reflective of one’s work ethics and practices. By doing this, companies can ensure that the employees have a clear idea of their work environment and professional expectations from the very beginning.
Provide a great onboarding process :
Employees are generally excited to start at a new job, and management should ensure that this is maintained. An impressionable starting day, a feedback loop, and an exciting calendar are some ways to keep new employees exhilarated. One must also ensure that communication is constant, and there is no grey silence that can make the recruits anxious. Employees should feel confident about seeking out opportunities and office relationships from the very beginning.
If employees face challenges during this crucial process, their enthusiasm takes a hit, which can take forever to resurface. A comprehensive recruiting program with enough time for feedback becomes crucial in employee retention.
Help your employees grow and develop
It is no secret that employees who feel underwhelmed about their job opportunities are quicker to leave. Instead of trying to harness more skilful employees, companies should focus on creating a skilful environment within the company. The primary way of doing this is by creating a training program, that is supplemented by workshops, incentives, etc.
According to the online course provider Udemy, 42 percent of the employees agree that learning and development is the most important benefit for deciding where to work. If the companies make a proactive approach to create strategies for employee growth and development, it will help in reducing employee turnover problems and drive more productivity in work.
Provide ample employee recognition :
One of the key reasons employees leave is due to a lack of recognition. Even though HR policies do include techniques to acknowledge efforts, they are often mechanical without any real value. Therefore, a structured employee recognition program is essential for proper retention.
Recognition means that the whole company has strong interpersonal communication, and the management is kept in the loop. This enables them to recognize how different employees are contributing in their capacities. The ideal case scenario is the creation of a recognition culture, where individual employees and company management can freely recognize one another.
Practice a feedback culture :
Effective communication requires open and honest give and take, and is an essential part of company culture. A cyclic, rather than a linear pattern of feedback is essential. Show your employees what they are lacking, and how to improve. Similarly, management should also be open to suggestions based on what employees feel and need.
Given the difficult situation that the pandemic has created, it is even more crucial to keep a check on employees. One can ask non-probing personal questions to make employees feel safe about their career choices.
Maintain work-life balance
Maintaining a healthy work-life balance for your employees is not only important for their health and relationships, but can also improve their productivities and performance. Simply put, if your employees don’t view their work as a burden, then they will make fewer mistakes, will work harder and are also more likely to become promoters of your brand.
It is not considered wise to excessively push your employees for short-term goals. This makes them feel overwhelmed, and results in half-baked results as well. Instead, it is better to have flexible work schedules that teams can manage on their own.
Work-life balance is one of the primary deciding factors for employees, especially people with families. Promoting a healthy work-life balance also makes sure they have fresher perspectives and give in their hundred percent during work hours.
Provide competitive compensation
Everyone wants to feel that they are being compensated adequately for the amount of work they put in. Apart from covering their cost of living, it also ensures that their time is worth their effort. Therefore, a competitive salary ensures that talented employees have minimal reasons to leave or to not utilize their full potential.
Management can thus save some time to research current wages and apply them as they see fit. When employees see that they are being paid as much – or more – than their contemporaries, it makes them more dedicated towards the company.
Encourage open communication
Perhaps one of the hardest goals to achieve in company culture is open communication. Employees always feel a sense of distance from their employers, which can be harmful to the growth of the company. Bosses who are easy to approach, open to suggestions, often end up recruiting a strong set of dedicated and hardworking employees.
Open communication means that employees are not afraid to put forward their ideas and concerns and that these are received with attention. This results in better results and easier delegation of responsibilities.
Bond with your Employees
According to a data from Virgin Pulse, a good relationship between the employees and their employer is one of the major factors determining the employee retention within the organisation. According to the data, 60 percent of the 1000 employees surveyed stated that their relationship with employers impacted their productivity as well as stress levels at work.
While it is not advisable to be overly involved with your employees’ lives, a certain amount of interest in their personal and professional life is beneficial. An update on their housing situation, celebrating their personal achievements, etc., are small ways in which managers can bond with their employees. Similarly, it is also healthy to promote team-building activities like group lunches, game nights, treks, etc.
These activities enrich the relationship and make them more connected to their peers and superiors. Such employees, understandably, will not be willing to leave easily.
Emphasise on diverse and inclusive workplace culture
As the world gradually becomes more accepting of differences, the workplace must adapt too. There has been rapid development in ensuring that the workplace is not hostile to any community, especially those that form a minority. As such, provisions to remove barriers of gender, sexual orientation, educational background, etc., are being adopted globally. This makes sure that employees feel safe in expressing themselves and can bring in fresher outlooks.
Therefore, as the workplace culture evolves, more and more attention is being given to the needs of the employees. A company that makes its employees feel appreciated will surely harness unbounded profits
The practices explained above are some ways in which companies can retain their most skilled employees, most efficiently. Policies and practices that are flexible, inclusive, and are based on a cycle of feedback, are ideal. The corporate world is ever-changing, and one must keep an eye out to stay on top of it. Corporates must be wise enough to revise and readapt these practices with changing times and needs.