Human resource leaders have several things on their radar this year with the changing political environment in Washington: Immigration, Repealing the Affordable Care Act, and the development or revocation of employment regulations and laws.
Though these are issues that we all need to keep an eye on, the real question keeping HR directors up at night is: “How can I reduce employee turnover in my company?”
HR directors must find ways to retain top talent as they seek to better their management of the company’s human capital. Here are four key ways to prevent employee turnover that will lead to a healthier, more productive workforce.
Create a Strong Onboarding Program
Lead the way in making new employees feel welcome. Instead of appearing only when an employee faces work-related woes, HR can create a positive relationship from the beginning by doing something as simple as sending a congratulatory letter to the employee. Peter Vanden Bos, in his article How to Build an Onboarding Plan for a New Hire, has some excellent ideas on how to shorten the learning curve for new hires. Plan ahead, use clear communication, keep to the schedule, and continue support after onboarding to building a relationship with new staff.
Include the following in your onboarding program to start off right:
- A robust new hire orientation where the employee learns about the company mission, vision and core values.
- A detailed explanation of the company’s policies, procedures, and benefits.
- A meet and greet with key departmental employees, including a warm introduction to the CEO and leadership team.
Build a Strong Relationship
According to SHRM’s Job Satisfaction and Engagement report, it is vital for employees to have a trust-based relationship with their managers. The respect that managers and the leadership show to employees is instrumental in building a bond of trust, appreciation, and loyalty. Remember that, in most cases, employees leave because of managers, not because of dissatisfaction with the company.
Try these tips for forming a professional rapport:
- Be Accessible. Many times, HR disappears after the initial onboarding process. Keeping up with your workers will let them know you respect them.
- Talk about things other than work. Maintain professionalism in your discussions, but talking about how cute an employee’s child is or listening to staff weekend plans builds trust and camaraderie.
- Provide positive feedback. New hires are typically nervous about the value of their contribution to the company. By encouraging them with positive feedback, you will help them gain confidence in their work.
Lay the Groundwork for Retention
Does your employee turnover report look like a revolving door? It’s time to concentrate on goals that keep workers engaged and dedicated to the company. Incentives, regular meetings, team building exercises, and honest communication have proven effective in maintaining the happiness of a workforce. When staff is happy, productivity increases, providing a quicker ROI of the employee. In contrast, consistent turnover puts pressure on managers to constantly train and handle new employees which can affect the bottom line.
Retain top talent with these suggestions from Harvard Business Review’s article How to Keep Top Talent:
- Share the responsibility of managing star employees with other general managers. Consider a program for employee leaders that will accelerate individual development.
- Do not expect your top talent to go down with the ship. Show your high performers that they are appreciated, even in times of trouble in the business. Something as simple as a weekly lunch out will help you retain those that offer the company the most value.
- Be careful when association performance with potential. HBR suggests that three attributes matter most when determining potential: ability, aspiration, and engagement. Assessing performers on these metrics will help you determine who has what it takes to be successful.
Consider the Bottom Line
According to SHRM, the average cost-per-hire is $4,129, and the average time it takes to fill a position is 42 days. When turnover is a regular occurrence in your company, the investment in employees can spiral out of control. Focus on retention and save the company’s money by building a loyal, productive staff that delivers a fast ROI. Take the time to invest in human capital so you can better manage retention, create a positive, motivated company culture, and ensure employees remain engaged in their work.
Implement these budget-conscious retention opportunities to save money and reduce employee turnover:
- Break up silos. Engage employees in the team environment and encourage collaboration. Even if your team is mobile, you can keep them connected using video chat technology like Gotomeeting, Google Hangouts, and Skype.
- Create a culture team. Form a team of individuals from all departments whose goal is to impact employee happiness. Let them celebrate birthdays and anniversaries with cake and a gift. Embolden employees to seek out the culture team when they experience difficulty. This will empower employees to protect the work culture and their part in it.
- Say “Thank You.” It may seem like a no-brainer, but workers often go extended periods of time without hearing those two reassuring words. Whether you say it out loud, write it in an email, or send a little card through interoffice mail, your staff will feel valued when they receive your appreciation.
For guidance on Retention, Change Management, Succession Planning, Compensation & Benefits, Leadership and Executive Coaching and Development, and all things “HR,” The Pendolino Group is here to support you and your team. Contact us today!
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