Employee retainment is critical to the long-term success of any business. Creating an environment which inspires employees to want to work is key to maximizing engagement within your workforce. Here are some substantial strategies to boost engagement and maximize retention.
#1. Provide Leadership Opportunities
Staff keen to pursue their career will be on the look-out for ways to gain promotion. Providing plenty of opportunities for employees to extend themselves above and beyond the existing scope of their role will create reasons for them to become more engaged as they strive to strengthen and expand their skills.
Identifying top performing staff is critical for succession planning within your business and in particular, identifying those who currently excel in non-management positions. Establishing ways to provide leadership opportunities for staff who possess management potential is a sure fire way to increase motivation among existing employees.
An additional method of strengthening engagement based on the provision of leadership opportunities is to develop a leadership development or emerging leaders program. Employees will be keen to pursue what it takes to gain entry into the program, and your business will benefit by the associated increased productivity levels.
#2. Succession Planning
Succession planning is critical to achieving business strategy but its effectiveness will remain fruitless if plans aren’t communicated to successors. Believe it or not, many companies earmark staff for promotion without ever actually telling them! If employees aren’t made aware of the likelihood of promotion opportunities, they’re very likely to look elsewhere to pursue their professional goals.
The old adage of ‘promoting from within’ goes a long way towards creating an environment where people enjoy working. When staff experience colleagues climbing the career ladder, they usually become motivated to stay knowing the likelihood of achieving their own promotion is realistic.
#3. Promote a Culture of Inclusion
In addition to the oft-mentioned team building exercises such as celebrating personal milestones and encouraging staff to interact on a face-to-face basis, there are plenty of other ways to promote inclusion in the workforce for better employee retainment.
Beginning each meeting by recognizing one team member for a recent professional accomplishment will go a long way towards creating a positive atmosphere. It serves as an affirmative way to introduce staff who may not work closely with others in the team. In larger teams, it creates awareness about the various roles within the broader team. It also reinforces the fact that people within the company are achieving goals and therefore the company is on a positive trajectory.
#4. Training and Education for Employee Retainment
Providing opportunities for training and education is a vital element to employee retainment. If staff feel they can’t further their skills or education within your workplace, they’ll seek to do so elsewhere. Encouraging staff to participate in training and education is a genuine way of proving that you care for your employees and that their contribution is valued. This type of investment also provides recognition that management is keen for them to stay over the long term.
Inviting high performers to attend a networking or special event with senior leaders from your business is a great way to provide staff recognition. Employees who aspire to climb the corporate ladder are always grateful for opportunities to mix with more senior people, particularly those who work in the types of roles they aspire to achieve.
As well as providing opportunities for top performers, it’s important to create opportunities for all employees to participate in training and development throughout the year. Perhaps you could invite each employee to submit an application to attend a training session of their choice each year.
#5. Outplacement Services
Offering the services of an outplacement provider to departing staff sends a clear message that your business cares about its staff and values the contribution they have made. When staff witness departing employees being supported to make an effective transition from their current employer to the next, it builds loyalty and enhances the reputation of the company both internally and externally.
In times of involuntary departure, change isn’t always easy for the people left behind. Offering effective support to those in need during such stressful times can go a long way towards improving employee retainment and morale and reinforcing the message that the company will strive to look after its staff regardless of changes that may need to take place in the future.
On the other hand, for those remaining you could implement “stay” interviews. These are the opposite of “exit” interviews and are a chance to ask your longer term employees all the reasons they choose to stay. Implement their responses into your retention strategy, because things attractive to one employee will likely apply to many more. You could ask questions such as the following:
- Why do you like working here?
- What motivates you to stay?
- What to you like / dislike most about your job?
- How do you feel about your manager?
- Do you have any suggestions for improvement?
#6. Creative Benefits Package
Offering a fair and reasonable salary is a good starting point for employee retainment as is the inclusion of essential elements such as life and health insurance. These days, however, it takes much more than that to inspire staff to stay over the long term. By using creativity when structuring individual packages, you can really tailor benefits to the needs of each staff member.
One may value the flexibility of working from home, whilst another may love the idea of working four longer days and taking one day off per week. During the interview process identify elements that are most attractive to new employees, and regularly discuss these throughout the year to ensure the company is still on track and meeting the needs of each employee in this regard.
Promoting positive and open discussions about salary and benefits will encourage your staff to feel welcome to discuss such factors with you, rather than simply looking for another employer who will better meet their needs. Imagine how unfortunate it would be to lose someone who found a benefit elsewhere that you could have offered, simply because you weren’t aware of their need?
Demonstrating flexibility when addressing the suggestions of your staff goes a long way towards proving your enthusiasm about recognizing their needs outside of work. After all, creating an environment where staff want to work is also generated by recognizing the fact that staff have a life outside of work and usually come to work to achieve their goals, both personally and professionally.
Do you have any progressive ways to improve employee retainment? Let us know below.