Your business has recruited great talent, brought them through a detailed onboarding plan, and developed a robust growth plan. Now, it’s time to shift focus to long-term retention, and assure that your business’ hard work and investment does not become subject to turnover or attrition. While there are involuntary reasons for this like retirement, having a grasp on voluntary turnover is pivotal.
In order to understand long-term retention, it’s first important to understand the reason behind turnover and attrition. Often, turnover can be attributed to numerous factors, some of which are included in our previous post, 5 Tactics to Grow and Develop Employees. Outside of variables like advancement opportunities, salaries, and culture, there are a handful of other factors that drive retention or turnover:
- Lack of benefits or investment in employee wellness
- Inability to have a flexible schedule
- Feeling overwhelmed or unsupported by direct manager and management
- Lack of employee engagement
Employers who have worked hard to grow and develop talent need to retain it. Here are 4 strategies for long-term employee retention:
1. Employee Benefits & Wellness
Benefits and wellness can not only be a major factor in acquiring new talent, but it’s also at the top of an employee’s value list when choosing to stay in a role.
This begins with a competitive benefits package. This, as researched by SHRM reduces the likelihood that an employee will find a more suitable position elsewhere.
On top of a competitive benefits package, keeping employees healthy mentally and physically is not only good practice, but just good business. Including resources to manage stress levels and promote the awareness of well-being in the office is a great way to get this started, and can include perks like:
- Gym membership reimbursement
- Counseling and stress management reimbursement
- Retirement planning services
- Educational assistance and reimbursement
- Additional paid leave
While the list above is not comprehensive, it’s a great place to get started on improving the wellbeing of your talent, and retaining team members for the long-term.
2. Flexible Work Schedules
An employee perk not mentioned in the list above is one that is so relevant in the workplace now, it’s hard to skip over without more context. More and more, workers are demanding flexible work schedules, and without them – retention can become vastly more difficult.
Flexible work schedules are more than just work-from-home days, and they include a holistic look at your business’ time management. Are employees expected to be available around the clock? Do employees feel like they’re constantly being monitored?
Recognizing the correct balance of flexibility in your business is crucial to retaining talent. Two ways you can include flexibility in your business’ time management are the allowance for remote or telecommuting workdays, and allowing employees to choose flexible working hours within reason.
Regardless of the avenue chosen, integrating flexible schedules to your business is something that can drastically reduce employee stress, and increase retention rates.
3. Management for Retention
Employees place significant value on the relationship they have with their managers and direct reports. This can, in turn, have a serious impact on their happiness and experience. Employees often-times state their turnover was due to a “bad manager” or a poor relationship with their manager.
As discussed in our previous article on growth and development, managers are often positioned best as coaches, with focus on development and growth of their direct reports.
Coaching-style management pulls the best work out of employees, and helps craft a strong rapport between managers and direct reports. It also works successfully because management, when positioned this way, is poised to tug on and explore the strengths of individual employees, and ensure that their work is aligned with their strengths.
Coaches are also optimistic, invested, assertive, and provide real-time feedback. This allows their direct-reports to be comfortable with feedback, optimistic about their growth, and much more likely to have a longer tenure with your business.
4. Employee Engagement
Lack of employee engagement, whether attributed to turnover or not, can be severely detrimental to your business. Employees who are disengaged can be discouraging, bring down morale, and set poor examples – particularly for new talent.
Increasing employee engagement and ensuring that your staff feels heard and valued can be started by being aware and proactive of the following:
- Encouraging employee voices – what’s the team saying? Is the business listening?
- Turning feedback into action, and empowering employees to give real time feedback.
- Introducing new opportunities for engagement and feedback, such as pulse surveys or anonymous chats.
Increasing employee engagement not only will boost retention, but it will innately increase employee feedback, and boost team morale.
Employers who have worked hard to find the right talent must continue to work hard to retain it. Implementing new strategies and systems of long-term retainment just scratches the surface on the ways to keep employee tenures long.
Want to hear more about retention strategies? Have questions? Please reach out to our team of recruitment and retention experts, and we’d be happy to help.