It's no secret that many organizations are struggling to find and retain talented employees in today's landscape of quiet-quitting, rampant job-hopping, and mass layoffs. For jobseekers, this means constantly being on the lookout for improved career prospects. For businesses, this makes implementing new internal structures and initiatives, such as talent retention strategies, an essential part of appealing to and maintaining top talent. While the plight of improving employee retention will require additional effort from organizations, it’s beneficial for both individual employees and the success of the organization in both the short and long term.
Understanding the different aspects of talent retention
Employee retention refers to the ability of organizations to maintain their existing workers, and recruiters play a much larger part in this than they may be aware of. Understanding the different aspects that figure into staff retention can help organizations keep employees happy for longer.
In 2021, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported an overall turnover rate of 57.3%, with 25% being accounted for as voluntary employee turnover. These rates are not only detrimental to the productivity of an organization but are also quite costly for the business overall. However, there are several approaches organizations and employers are taking to improve retention and decrease turnover.
11 tactics to help improve employee retention
1. Making improvements to the recruiting experience
Enhancing the recruiting experience involves reimagining the entire candidate journey. It begins with crafting compelling job descriptions that accurately depict the role's responsibilities and the organization's culture. Streamlining the application process and adopting innovative assessment methods can help identify the best-fit candidates efficiently. Clear and timely communication at every stage cultivates a positive impression, leaving candidates excited about the prospect of joining the team.
2. Optimizing the onboarding process for new employees
An effective onboarding process sets the stage for a productive and engaged workforce. Beyond paperwork, it encompasses comprehensive training, a warm welcome, and a well-defined roadmap for growth within the company. Providing mentors or buddies ensures that new hires have a go-to person for guidance, creating a sense of belonging from day one. By integrating them into the company's values and objectives, new employees feel invested and motivated to do their best.
3. Ensuring employees have the proper tools they need to succeed
Equipping employees with the right tools is vital for their efficiency and job satisfaction. This extends beyond physical equipment to encompass software, training resources, and ongoing skill development. Regularly assessing and updating these tools not only enhances productivity but also communicates the organization's commitment to supporting its workforce. Access to up-to-date technology and resources empowers employees to innovate, resulting in a dynamic and forward-moving work environment.
4. Fostering a positive, inclusive work environment
Creating an environment where diversity is celebrated and inclusivity is the norm leads to a more engaged and loyal workforce. Encouraging open dialogue, embracing varied perspectives, and implementing diversity training initiatives promote a culture of mutual respect. When employees feel valued for their unique contributions, they are more likely to form strong emotional connections to the organization, leading to increased job satisfaction and retention.
5. Offering hybrid or remote work options
Acknowledging the evolving nature of work preferences, offering flexible work arrangements can significantly impact retention. Providing options for remote or hybrid work models accommodates employees' individual needs and fosters a healthier work-life balance. This approach demonstrates trust in employees' abilities to manage their tasks independently, resulting in higher morale, reduced commuting stress, and a greater commitment to the organization.
6. Improving communication throughout the organization
Clear and transparent communication is the backbone of a cohesive and engaged workforce. Establishing regular channels for sharing updates, company news, and individual achievements fosters a sense of belonging. Implementing open-door policies and regular feedback sessions provides employees with opportunities to voice their concerns and ideas. Improved communication enhances alignment with company goals, minimizes misunderstandings, and boosts overall employee satisfaction.
7. Actively avoiding and/or mitigating employee burnout
Prioritizing employee well-being involves proactively identifying and addressing signs of burnout. Encouraging employees to take breaks, promoting stress-reduction techniques, and setting realistic workloads all contribute to a healthier and more motivated workforce. By cultivating a culture that values work-life balance and mental health, organizations can prevent burnout, resulting in higher levels of engagement and retention.
8. Encouraging employees to find a healthier work-life balance
Promoting work-life balance involves fostering an environment where employees are empowered to prioritize their personal well-being alongside their professional responsibilities. This can be achieved by setting clear expectations, encouraging employees to use their vacation time, and offering flexible scheduling options. When employees feel supported in achieving equilibrium between their work and personal lives, they are more likely to remain committed to the organization.
9. Offering competitive salary, perks, and benefits
Providing a competitive compensation package goes beyond monetary rewards. Offering benefits such as health insurance, retirement plans, and professional development opportunities communicates a long-term commitment to employees' growth and security. Additional perks like wellness programs, childcare support, and flexible spending accounts contribute to a comprehensive package that attracts and retains top talent.
10. Providing employee development opportunities
Investing in employees' professional growth demonstrates a commitment to their long-term success. Offering training, workshops, and opportunities for skill enhancement not only increases employees' capabilities but also enhances their sense of worth within the organization. Employees who see a clear path for advancement are more likely to stay engaged, motivated, and loyal, contributing positively to retention efforts.
11. Focusing on employee wellness
Prioritizing employee wellness entails holistic support for their physical, mental, and emotional well-being. This can include wellness programs, mental health resources, and access to fitness facilities. Encouraging healthy habits and stress-reduction activities contributes to a workforce that feels cared for and valued. When employees perceive the organization as invested in their overall well-being, they are more likely to form strong attachments and remain dedicated for the long haul.
These ideas emphasize the importance of employer action. Organizations that make an effort to see their employees succeed at work are much more likely to see higher retention rates than those that don’t.
The influence of company culture on employee work
Company culture represents the environment created in a particular workplace, including the values, attitudes, and behaviors of the company and its employees. Fostering a positive workplace culture results in better relationships, open communication, boosted morale, and increased employee productivity.
It’s vital that employers don’t underestimate the influence of company culture on retention and the creation of a positive employer brand. According to statistics highlighted by Jobvite, 32% of workers cited poor company culture as the reason for leaving their job.
Cultivating a culture of learning
Creating a culture of learning in the workplace has been an extremely effective way for businesses to bolster employee morale and retain talent both before the labor shortage and throughout. This is emphasized by a 2021 LinkedIn workplace study which found that 94% of employees would be inclined to stay at their job if the company invested in their long-time learning.
Employee training statistics from Lorman also found that 74% of employees don’t feel they are reaching their full potential due to a lack of development opportunities, while 61% of workers specifically seek these opportunities when considering a job. As learning in the workplace becomes progressively more important to attract and retain the workforce, it’s essential for employers and managers to focus on cultivating this culture and implementing it effectively.
- Key aspects of creating a successful culture of learning and development include:
- Developing opportunities for continuous learning
- Establishing learning as a core company value
- Empowering managers and employees to lead by example
- Encouraging knowledge sharing
- Fostering a growth mindset
- Offering flexibility and versatility to support independent learning
The most effective way to develop a culture of learning is to instill these ideas in every aspect of the organization. Giving employees the tools they need to grow and succeed not only shows your willingness to invest in their future but will positively impact the company overall. A study from Axonify reports 93% of employees believed a well-planned training program positively affected their levels of engagement, and a study from Gallup found 59% less turnover in engaged workers.
Those in learning and development are seeing a direct connection between learning and retention. Emerald Works highlights that 66% of L&D professionals said of their organization's employer value proposition, including employer branding, because of its positive impact on retention and overall operational efficiency.
How turnover and retention affect organizations
While turnover rates and retention rates are correlated, they aren’t directly related. However, both are fundamental to consider when prioritizing talent retention — especially if organizations want to keep retention high and employee turnover low.
Organizations see the consequences of low retention and high staff turnover in the form of decreased productivity, avoidable time spent training new employees, increased recruitment costs, and lost sales. A 2020 report from Built In estimated that losing a worker costs approximately 1.5 to 2 times the employee’s salary.
Optimizing the onboarding process
Some businesses are avoiding high turnover through an optimized employee onboarding process. Ensuring employees are equipped with the tools and knowledge they need to thrive is of the utmost importance. If your workforce is set up to succeed you’re much more likely to see higher retention rates and continuously engaged and satisfied employees.
Remote and hybrid opportunities
Remote and hybrid work options are also becoming increasingly important for the workforce. A report on the State of Remote Work states 98% of respondents would like to work remotely at least some of the time and 32% believe flexibility is the biggest benefit of working from home. Implementing strategies that are highly sought after by potential hires is a valuable retention tool, as Lucidchart found companies that offer remote work experience a 25% lower employee turnover rate.
Professional development opportunities
For many organizations, reskilling and upskilling will be essential so your employees can grow alongside the business. Reskilling is not only effective for reducing the costs of filling new roles but it’s also valuable for preparing employees for higher roles within the company. Bonusly highlights 70% of high-retention-risk employees say they would leave their organizations for better career advancement opportunities. Employees who see a future or possible leadership role in the organization are more likely to stick around longer.
Maximizing retention through employee engagement and job satisfaction
Smarp reports that a staggering 71% of executives believe employee engagement is critical to their company’s success. Employees who are satisfied and engaged are more likely to stay at their job, be more productive, and have a stronger sense of the company’s mission and purpose. In order to ensure workers are committed and fulfilled, employers can focus on:
- Living the company’s mission, vision, and values
- Recognizing and rewarding employees
- Communicating regularly
- Promoting healthy work habits
- Fostering a supportive and collaborative culture
A performance and retention report from the Corporate Leadership Council specifies highly engaged employees at work perform 20% better and are 87% less likely to leave their current job.
Some of the most important factors affecting employee engagement are management, culture, recognition, and continuous professional development. Not only do workers want to be treated with respect and care, but they highly value the chance to learn and grow.
Consistently weaving positive work aspects, specifically learning and development, into your internal structures can hugely improve employee satisfaction, engagement and, as a result, retention.
When employers demonstrate that they’re as committed to employee growth as they are business growth, people stick around. Implementing Absorb LMS gives organizations the tools they need to build and support a culture of learning for employees to thrive long-term. Request a private demo of Absorb LMS now.