Employees come and go, this is only natural. But having a large staff turnover should ring alarm bells in any manager’s head. Retaining employees that you’ve invested time and money it makes sense financially and emotionally. Improving
Why Is improving Employee Retention Important?
As we saw in a previous blog post, the true cost of losing a valued employee is a far larger financial burden than one would expect.
When it came to staff earning over £25,000, a study found that £13,128 of wages are lost (which new employees find their feet) and around £12,000 was lost in capital income. Deeper than that, losing employees impacts on moral. Both amongst other team members and any clients that the employee had a direct relationship with.
Once customers realise that they are taking to different staff members each time they ring, they will start to get suspicious. What’s wrong with the company that they are haemorrhaging staff so rapidly?
Therefore, it's clear that having a plan in place to reduce employee turnover is vital.
With that in mind, we wanted to look at the small things that make a difference in employees’ minds. It’s no secret that we deal with employee incentives and engagement programmes. But even we know that sometimes it’s also the little, everyday things that can make a fundamental difference in staff outlook.
1) Departmental Lunches
We don’t just mean client meetings or jollies or a trip to the pub. Nothing brings a department together better than a spot of food. Take advantage of staff diversity and ask staff members to bring in some food that represents their heritage/culture. Start a rota and ask each person in the team (managers included) to bring in some food. One in three employees eats the same lunch every day. So dull.
Top Ten Lunches in the UK:
- Cheese sandwich
- Ham sandwich
- Chicken sandwich
- Other sandwich
- Tomato soup
- Vegetable soup
- Microwave meal
Change things up once a week and come together, no work talk, just colleagues enjoying something different for lunch. Healthy employees are happy employees, after all! A number of companies use this sort of event to simultaneously raise money for their chosen charity too. Employee retention and charity? Always a winner!
2) Take A Poll On The Next Big Decision
Successful companies are ones that involve their staff in decisions.
This doesn’t necessarily mean lengthy company-wide meetings, merely an inclusion at the grassroots level that gives employees a personal investment in the company. So next time you’re writing the company culture document or going for a logo update - send out a staff survey or set up a focus group of employees that wouldn’t normally get involved in that type of project. Get their input; see them take pride in the results.
3) Change The Way You Meet
So many employees complain about a number of meetings they have to participate in. Many feel that they lead nowhere, take up valuable time and fries their brains! Increasing the efficiencies of each meeting might just appease the workforce and have a knock-on effect on productivity. Make a concerted company-wide effort to ensure that each meeting has a purpose, is structured and actionable. Reducing the number of meetings would be amazing, but making them more productive is a great start.
4) Be Transparent
There’s nothing worse for employees than seeing people being squirrelled away into meeting rooms for clandestine chats. Half the time, these are totally innocuous chats about small housekeeping items. But the more secretive things get, the more suspicious and nervous employees get. Handle staff problems immediately and openly. A quick five-minute explanation during tough times will reassure staff and nip gossip in the bud.
5) Take an interest
You don’t need to know everything about your staff and their personal lives, but try and remember whatever details they offer you. Make a point of saying good morning and good evening on a personal level. The communication you have with staff shouldn’t only be in meetings or emails. Team members want to know that they have a career pathway in the company. Developmental support and supporting their professional development is critical for employee retention. If they don’t feel that they have a future with you, why would they stay?