Keep Your Superheroes: 6 Steps to Reduce Employee Turnover

Posted by Jaylyn Schumpert on Mon, May 07, 2012 Do you know what is important to your prospective and current employees? Do you work hard to meet those needs? If you answered yes to both questions, then you probably have a low employee turnover rate. However, this is not the case for all employers and many companies struggle with the issue of employee turnover.

The average employee tenure at a company is approximately 4 years. This is barely enough, or not enough, time for a company to fully recoup hiring and training costs. Companies cannot eliminate turnover; however, there are some items to consider when trying to retain quality people.

The following are 6 steps that an employer can take to attract and retain top talent:

1) Evaluate Your Managers

Measure employee turnover by manager; this pinpoints the real problem. Poor managers cancel out all the good things that employers do to attract and retain the right people. Once the problem managers have been identified, help them! Use assessments or other tools to discover what these managers are doing to drive employees away and then provide training to develop them into better leaders. Good management is crucial to employee retention.

2) Create a Recognition Culture

Give your managers the responsibility for seeking out ways that employees go above and beyond. Create awards for excellent performance; this gives everyone an opportunity to be in the spotlight for doing a good job. Great examples of employee recognition include: thank you notes, employee of the month awards, newsletter recognition, service awards, etc. Positive recognition will lead to a more productive work environment.

3) Create a Healthy Work Environment

Create an environment where positive recognition seems normal. In order to achieve this there must be open communication, an attitude of cooperation, and an atmosphere of trust. Communicate with your employees; let them know where the company is going, how it plans to get there, how their jobs play a part in the grand scheme of things, and why they are the key to your success. Look for ways to show that you are willing to meet them halfway in balancing their personal and professional lives- flexible hours, childcare facilities, birthday leave, etc. Last, but definitely not least, trust your employees. If you want people to trust you, then you have to trust them. Give people a good reputation to live up to and they won’t let you down.

4) Create an Atmosphere of Continual Self-Improvement

Today’s job candidates want the opportunity to develop themselves and to continually polish their skills, abilities, and experience. Invest heavily in training and employee development and encourage employees to take advantage of the programs offered. Give everyone access to training that will enhance their self-esteem, their value, and their skills. Prove to your employees that there is no reason to leave when they can receive training and development from within the organization.

5) Put Your Best Foot Forward

This next statement may definitely throw some employers for a loop; pay employees as much salary and provide as many benefits as you can afford from day one. The goal is to reduce turnover and retain the right people, so if you scale back the initial offer by 15%, will the savings be enough to retain the employee when another company offers more money? Probably not. Put your best foot forward from the start and let everyone know that you are paying as much as you can afford for each position. As a person moves up the ladder, their pay should be adjusted accordingly. Know what each job is worth, and pay it early.

6) Match People to Jobs

Ensure people are matched to their jobs in terms of their abilities, interests, and personalities. When people are placed in positions where job demand and abilities match, where job stimulation and interest match, and where cultural demands and personalities match, turnover decreases and productivity increases. Employers can use assessments to determine the requirements of each position in terms of abilities, interests, and personalities and then use the information to match people to jobs where they will excel.

In most cases we want the quick, easy, and inexpensive fix, but unfortunately that is not always possible. Attracting and retaining the highest quality people may take time, effort, and money. By applying the 6 steps from above, companies can eliminate a large percentage of why people leave and keep the people that are essential to their success.