How to Prevent Employee Turnover
Employee turnover is a normal, even expected, part of running a business. While some industries and companies have a higher turnover rate than others, having an unusually high employee turnover may be a sign that you need to look at your company culture and implement retention strategies to encourage employees to stay.
Why Does Employee Turnover Matter?
Employee turnover may be voluntary (employee chooses to leave for whatever reason) or involuntary (employee is terminated). In either case, an employee’s exit requires you to invest time and money in finding a replacement.
Employee turnover is costly. Losing an active employee can affect your business’ productivity. At the same time, you look for a replacement, and the additional costs of advertising the position, screening, hiring, and training the new employee to add up quickly.
Your customers are affected by employee turnover, too, and may be uneasy about the company if employees frequently come and go.
Understanding Employee Turnover
Before taking steps to reduce or prevent employee turnover, you must understand why employees leave. Employees leave for various reasons; conducting exit interviews is the best way to obtain insight into those reasons. Exit interviews not only provide specific answers as to why the employee is leaving but also give insight into the employee perspective of your business and a look at what retention strategies need attention and improvement.
During an exit interview, an employee may give one or more of the following reasons for leaving their job:
- Inadequate salary (well over half of all employees list the potential for a higher salary as the reason they are looking for a new job.)
- Limited career advancement
- Desire for better perks and benefits
- Need for a better work/ life balance
- Dissatisfaction with company culture
- Feeling overworked or unsupported
Employee Retention Strategies
Now that you know why your employees are choosing to leave, you can take steps to slow and stop turnover through employee retention strategies.
Hiring, Onboarding, and Orientation
The number one way to reduce employee turnover rates is to hire suitable candidates to start. This means being clear in your job advertisements about the knowledge, skills, and experience required, as well as the soft skills and characteristics most compatible with your company’s culture.
Your mission to retain an employee begins the minute you hire them. When you set up your new hire for success, you lay a lasting foundation for them. Onboarding and orientation are especially critical times for a new employee. Your effort in making this training and support comprehensive and reflective of your company culture will set the tone for that employee’s time with you. Make an effort to train and educate your new employee for their new position and teach them about the company culture and how they can thrive in it.
Salary and Benefits
Salary is the top reason many employees leave a job. While your business may have a maximum salary limit budgeted for a position, there are other ways to compensate employees and encourage them to stay.
Benefits have become an essential factor in attracting and keeping employees. Benefits options may include:
- Health insurance
- Company investment and stock ownership
- Retirement and investment plans
- Educational opportunities and training
- Tuition reimbursement
- Flexible work schedules and options
- Childcare stipends
- Flexible time off
A generous salary and benefits package shows your employee that you value them right from the start and incentivizes them to stay loyal to your company down the road.
Communication and Company Culture
Today, how employees feel at work is more important than ever. Safety, inclusion, understanding, and appreciation – These have all become important factors in attracting and retaining employees. Exit interviews with departing employees will inform you where the weak points in communication and support may be. Regular meetings with team members can help keep workplace communication positive and constructive.
Recognition and rewards are an essential part of retaining employees as well. All employees should be encouraged and supported for their ideas and contributions; rewarding milestones and accomplishments can make a big significant impact on them.
The tips and strategies above are just some of the ways that you can help improve your employees’ satisfaction and make your company more attractive in the long term. Preventing employee turnover requires regular attention and effort. You should re-evaluate your company culture and compensation offerings frequently and compare them to companies of the same size and scope. Stay up to date on the current market trends and best practices, ensuring your company culture remains strong, vibrant, and adaptable as your business grows.
Employee turnover may be inevitable, but if those employees leave your company knowing they were heard, supported, and valued, they will pass that positive view on to others who could one day be your new hires.