In March 2022, nearly 4.5 million people in the U.S. quit their jobs. Clearly, the Great Resignation is still well underway and not showing signs of stopping. With this trend, which was originally fueled by the pandemic, is intensifying. It can possibly cause long-lasting damage to businesses across the country.
From facing steep hiring costs to losing valuable expertise, small business owners and large corporation managers are facing unprecedented challenges. What can you do to boost your employee retention rate and improve the quality of your workplace?
The competition to find and retain the best talents is getting fiercer by the minute. Understanding how to create a better workplace can truly make or break your organization’s chances of success.
The impact of the Great Resignation
The Great Resignation — also known as the Big Quit or Great Reshuffle — is a trend that started briefly after the beginning of the pandemic. Over the past two years, millions of professionals around the country had to deal with reduced pay, redundancies, and makeshift solutions. This includes working from home.
Through those unprecedented months, many workers were forced to reconfigure their lives and rethink their priorities. With the economy bouncing back, there are a whopping 11 million new job openings each month. Many are looking to aim higher and find a job that offers them security, development opportunities, competitive compensation, and a great work-life balance.
Why is it so important for companies to understand the ins and outs of this ongoing trend? How can they introduce measures to boost employee retention rates?
Losing an employee that has been working for your company for years represents a significant human capital loss. First, that employee had the experience necessary to work independently and unsupervised. Moreover, they were building relationships with clients and dealing directly with other business stakeholders.
If they decide to leave, you will need to find a new hire. The process of finding, hiring, and training a new recruit can be 200% higher than retaining an existing employee.
Working with employee management experts
Each organization is unique. So is your workforce. When it comes down to introducing measures to boost your retention rates, it is important to look at what your individual needs are.
For example, introducing a hybrid work model can be an excellent solution for a new, agile startup. Meanwhile, a larger, more established business will require a different strategy. That is why, to effectively manage employees, it is important to work with an expert to focus on your unique goals and needs.
An employee-manager can help you understand how to craft your recruitment strategy, invest the right budget for training and development, and remain compliant with your local regulations. Ultimately, a specialized employee manager is a key resource in your organization. This is especially true if you are looking to expand your team and grow your business.
Introducing a hybrid work model
Working from home is certainly not a new trend in the international job market. In 2015, the rise of Upwork and other platforms has helped freelancers build a career while working from the comfort of their homes. However, for some small businesses and large corporations, this only became a viable option during the pandemic.
During the first months of the COVID-19-related public health emergency, workers around the world had to quickly adapt to working from home and designate makeshift home offices.
Today, remote work is no longer a temporary or emergency measure.
Companies are now gearing up to offer their employees the right tools and systems to work productively and securely from home. This has helped millions of employees create a work-life balance that truly works for them, reduce the costs and timings associated with commuting, and establish a healthier routine.
At the same time, hybrid work models can be highly beneficial for your organization as a whole. If part of your team can efficiently work from a remote location, you can save money on rent and give your employees the flexibility they are after. What’s more, today, employees are actively looking for companies offering hybrid work models and remote work opportunities – don’t miss out on the chance of incorporating this competitive edge into your business!
Providing employees with developmental opportunities
The lack of development opportunities was the second most common reason why workers left their jobs in 2021. On the other hand, due to the rise of emerging technologies and automation, over half of today’s workforce will require upskilling and reskilling by 2025.
Not offering training, advancement, and development opportunities can offer both your company and your employees.
If you are looking to maintain your workforce relevant and competitive while boosting your retention rate, there are several alternatives worth considering. These include t
raining courses, employee-sponsored college education, development courses, assessments and reviews, and mentoring and coaching programs.
Working with a professional corporate trainer or outsourcing your training programs can help you implement an efficient solution while minimizing the effort involved. Don’t forget to leverage the expertise and industry knowledge that is already within your organization. When you start looking, you’ll find that several of your senior employees can make for great mentors.
Asking for employee input
When looking at what makes a good business, a few aspects come to mind, including good branding, effective marketing strategies, and a great product. But beyond all this, what truly makes a business great is its employees.
Your team represents your main asset – and one of the most difficult ones to replace. But, often, employees face day-to-day challenges that are not known to executives and managers.
So, if you are looking to improve your workplace, you will need to find out more about the unique challenges your employees face. You might consider face-to-face meetings and surveys to better understand the desires, pain points, and goals of your employees.
Once you have this knowledge, it will be much easier to start working toward building a better workplace.
Providing competitive employee compensation
The greatest volume of quits during 2021 happened in lower-paid sectors, including hospitality, retail, and healthcare. And, “inadequate compensation and benefits” remains the number one reason for quitting among those who left their jobs in 2022. In turn, if you are looking to reduce your employee turnover, you should address the elephant in the room: their pay.
When it comes down to taking your business to the next level, it is important to keep a growth mindset. Investing in the top talents will yield top results. However, there is one considerable benefit of today’s changing job environment with keeping in mind. When working with a remote workforce, you can tap into a global talent pool.
Focusing on physical space improvements
Finally, don’t forget about your business’s physical premises. Your employees will spend around 40 hours each week in the office. Their motivation, mood, and productivity will be highly influenced by the physical environment around them.
You might consider investing in a thorough renovation. This includes the implementation of collaborative spaces and virtual conference rooms. There are ways to upgrade your office space on a budget.
For example, you can start working towards your goals by reducing clutter, embracing a minimalist approach, and letting light and fresh air in. Don’t forget to provide your employees with multiple and diverse workstations to encourage their productivity and creativity.
Be sure to place a focus on rest. You can do so by creating rest and socialization areas. If you have an outdoor space you can leverage, optimize it by adding benches and chairs. After all, two hours a week in nature is all your employees need to feel healthier and happier.