Employee Retention - A diverse team sits around a boardroom table

7 Tips for Improving Employee Retention

Sarah Jane Martin HR & Recruiting Advice, Management Best Practices Leave a Comment

Attracting qualified candidates is a challenge all employers face—but what about employee retention? Once your new employee has signed their contract and completed their onboarding, don’t lose sight of the long term. It’s one thing to hire an employee, but fostering motivation and convincing them to stay is a whole other ball game.  

High Employee Turnover and Low Retention Have Costly Consequences.

If your company has a high turnover rate, that’s a major red flag. If you delay in taking action to create a strategic plan for improving employee retention, your business can suffer dramatically. Some common consequences of high turnover include:

  • Increased spend on recruitment costs;
  • Low productivity;
  • Plummeting sales;
  • Employee burnout from increased workload due to repeatedly training new staff;
  • Poor employee morale; and
  • Decreased brand awareness.

Here are some simple ways to improve employee retention, leading to a happier, healthier team, and a significant increase in productivity and profits.

1) Demonstrate That You Appreciate and Value Their Efforts

If employees feel their hard work goes unnoticed, their commitment and motivation will drop. An easy way to show appreciation is by implementing an employee recognition program. Publicly acknowledge high performers and those who have gone the extra mile. It’s also worth celebrating employment milestones to show appreciation for continued company loyalty.

Performance bonuses are another way of celebrating hard work and incentivizing employees to achieve more. Track and measure the productivity and success of your employees, reward the high-performers, and give them a shout-out, so the rest of the team is aware.

2) Invest in Their Professional Development

Offering skills training, networking opportunities, conferences, or tuition and textbook stipends shows your employees that you want to help them reach their full potential. Providing opportunities to level up their skills and take on more responsibility opens the door to exciting career prospects. Show people a clear path upward, and they’ll be more willing to stick around.  

3) Offer Diversity Training

Many businesses are making a concerted effort to diversify their team, but if your company culture isn’t inclusive, there’s a higher likelihood that your diverse hires won’t feel comfortable or motivated to stay. Offering diversity training for all staff will help foster a respectful, healthy environment for underrepresented groups like women, people of colour, people with disabilities, and members of the 2SLGBTQ+ community.  

4) Provide Schedule Flexibility

Everyone has responsibilities and priorities outside of work. Your employees may have children or dependents, volunteer roles, medical conditions, creative pursuits, or other things requiring attention. Providing some schedule flexibility makes it much easier for people to maintain a healthy work/life balance without neglecting their responsibilities.

If possible, offer a hybrid work model where employees can work from home part-time. If an employee experiences a major life change or new responsibility—like having to care for an elderly parent—consider offering a reduction in their hours to accommodate their needs.

5) Provide a Personalized Benefits Package

Employee benefits aren’t one-size-fits-all. A 20-year-old single student with no dependents will have different needs than an employee with a spouse and children, or someone with a chronic illness or injury. During your onboarding process, sit down with the employee and outline their options for medical benefits so they can select a plan that suits their needs.   

Employee Retention - An employee and her boss have a discussion at their boardroom desk.

6) Keep Open Lines of Communication

Your employees will likely have questions or concerns at some point. Provide a channel of communication where you can listen and respond in a timely way. When employees know their voices are heard and their opinions are valued, they feel empowered and respected. That’s a sure-fire way to build loyalty and commitment.

7) Ensure Wages are Fair, Equitable, and Competitive

Salary information databases like Glassdoor are easily accessible and provide relevant, up-to-date wage averages across all industries. If your employees see that their salaries are less than the industry standard, there’s less incentive for them to stay. Pay them above the industry standard, and they’ll be far more likely to stick around.

You should also be mindful of pay inequities across employees within your company. If two people with similar roles and qualifications have drastically different salaries, this can create distrust.

Putting in the extra effort to improve your company’s retention rate will always be a worthwhile investment.

You’ll be amazed at how much money you’ll save in the long run—and you’ll have a happier, healthier team that’s motivated to get to work.

Want more tips and tutorials to boost productivity, create a healthy workplace culture, and help every team member feel valued and respected? Browse the Pinnacle blog or follow us on LinkedIn to find more employer resources from Winnipeg’s top recruitment firm.

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