Employees are one of, if not, the most important asset to any business. Having great Employee Retention Techniques will ensure high staff retention, grow a positive workplace and lead to business sucess.
“Employees are a company’s greatest asset – they’re your competitive advantage. You want to attract and retain the best; provide them with encouragement, stimulus, and make them feel that they are an integral part of the company’s mission.”
Anne M. Mulcahy former chairperson and CEO of Xerox
Hiring Starts at “Hello”
Employee retention techniques should start before a person is even an employee.
It is vital to make sure that you hire the right people. This is where effective interview techniques which assess what motivates an individual, what an individual has achieved so far, and what weaknesses they have should be carried out.
In addition to this make sure you have established what their aspirations involve. There are many different personality tests that can be used, and it would be advantageous to seek specialist human resource advice if you don’t have the knowledge in-house.
A popular test is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, used by 89 of the Fortune 100 companies, before hiring an employee. Isabel Briggs Myers highlighted the importance of understanding people’s personality type in one simple quote:
“If you don’t know what an extrovert thinks, you haven’t been listening. If you don’t know what an introvert thinks, you haven’t asked them!”
The test identifies what tendencies an individual’s personality leans towards, giving an insight into how they interact with others, and whether they can make improvements in their learning, communication and work.
It is important to know how and where that person will fit in your team in order to keep all employees happy and retain staff. One bad fit can have a devastating knock on effect on staff productivity and staff retention levels.
Employee Retention Techniques and Salary and Benefits
Following on from effective hiring we have salary and benefits. This is probably one of the most obvious staff retention techniques. However, you may be mistaken in thinking it is as simple as offering a person more money to keep them in their job longer. Although more money can be a motivating factor, you don’t always have to spend more to help increase retention. There is a world of other financial benefits along with salary increases that can help keep retention rates high, sometimes these outweigh a raise in salary. Companies effectively provide many benefits such as private healthcare or even something as simple as flexible working hours. More and more companies are starting to realise the importance of benefits as part of the whole package in attracting and retaining high quality staff. Platforms such as Benefits Cloud provide a whole array of perks for employees, such as large discounts on holidays, goods or even savings on subscriptions, such as Sky Broadband.
Keep a close eye on employee work-life balance. If a person feels like they spend more time working than they do at home, it is likely that they will start to resent their job. It is important to remember that not giving them enough time with family is also likely to cause resentment from their family, which will cause stress for them. Regus found that 74% of people would choose a job that offered more flexible working. Flexible working options can mean your employees can more effectively marry their work and personal life, in turn leading to greater loyalty, less time off and higher levels of productivity. Again, this leads back to the hiring process and making sure you adopt transparency with your potential new team members. If the job is going to require overtime or unusual hours don’t sugar coat it, be honest. Also consider giving staff the option of paid overtime, flexi-hours or even time in lieu Show them that you recognise and appreciate the commitment they have made to you.
Team Building: Get Employee To Buy In
An important factor is any healthy work environment is building team spirit and bonding with each other outside of the workplace. Consider setting regular staff socials, which can be anything; from something as simple as a meal to a more direct team building exercise such as an escape room. Officevibe found that employees who have a high engagement level are 88% less likely to leave a business, from analysing annual employment surveys.
Training is another significant aspect in helping to hold high staff retention levels, not only does it help further increase the skill levels of employees, but it also increases their value to you as an asset. People want to develop when they join an organisation and sending them on workshops or other types of training shows them that you want to help them grow and do take their role seriously.
Purely from a business stand point, it has been found that companies with formal training programs have 218% higher income per employee and 24% higher profit margin. In addition, demonstrating that you are willing to invest in an employee is likely to make them feel more valued and aid retention. As Richard Branson famously said “Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don’t want to”.
Management is a key area for employee retention, as managers are the primary connection between a company and an employee. Managers are often involved in the hiring process, which is one of the first steps in developing a relationship with an employee.
They are likely to have a direct influence on many of the other retention techniques mentioned above, as confirmed in the 2015 Gallup survey which found that half of all respondents had left job at some point in their career, simply to get away from their boss. That is why it is vital that your organisation has well-trained and effective managers leading the team. They should be educated in the importance of employee retention and how they can effectively aid the process. Anne M Mulcahy noted:
“Employees who believe that management is concerned about them as a whole person – not just an employee – are more productive, more satisfied, more fulfilled. Satisfied employees mean satisfied customers, which leads to profitability.”
A Final Note on Employee Retention Techniques
Overall, there are many factors that impact employee retention and this article has laid out some of the key techniques used to help aid this. Remember, any retention techniques used should start from the first encounter with a potential employee and you should effectively train your manager to lead on the different areas of staff retention.