I came across this article recently on Undercover Recruiter titled, “Why Employee Retention Should Be a Talent Acquisition Responsibility”. It’s a good read worth checking out. My takeaway was that talent acquisition professionals play a role in employee retention. They do this by designing a good hiring process. One that accurately reflects the culture of the organization. And selecting candidates that will fit with the company culture. Lastly, they make sure the transition from candidate to employee is a smooth one.
But let’s be clear. Talent acquisition professionals aren’t the only ones responsible for employee retention. Everyone in the organization plays a role in employee retention. Let me repeat that. Everyone has responsibility for employee retention. From the manager who coaches the employee to the co-workers who work with employee to the customers that the employee interacts with. They all play a part in whether the employee stays with the company or goes.
Organizations are very focused on employee retention right now. As they should be. Turnover is expensive both in terms of hard costs as well as the drain on morale and productivity. There are some things that organizations can do to help everyone understand their role in employee retention.
Let managers know that employee retention is a priority. I’m not suggesting that there won’t be times when an employee leaving isn’t a good thing. Sometimes employees should leave the organization because they aren’t the right fit. Or they want experiences that the company can’t provide. But there are times when employees leave, and it could have been avoided.
Use stay interviews to find out what employees are thinking. Stay interviews are designed to help organizations identify what makes employees stay with the company. This information can be useful in recruitment marketing. It can also keep organizations from making changes that employees may leave the company over (like a major overhaul of a popular employee benefit).
Create buddy and mentor programs to encourage peer-to-peer relationships. Many organizations focus on managers building relationships with their teams – which is essential. But how much time is spent on developing team relationships. There are times when employees want someone to talk to, but not a member of management or human resources. Give them a way to form internal networks that will help them through tough times.
Train and empower employees to solve customer problems. I mentioned earlier in this article that customers play a role in employee retention. Educating customers and setting expectations is important. And sometimes companies create policies and procedures that infuriate customers. Employees get the brunt of that anger. At some point, an employee might say, “Hey – I’m not putting up with this anymore. The company doesn’t care about its customers. I’ll go someplace that does.”
Realize resignations aren’t the end of working relationships. I know this article is all about retaining employees but keep in mind that, when employees leave…they can return. Provided the company has a defined offboarding process that allows individuals to exit with respect. With unemployment numbers at historic lows, reengaging with former employees is a definite possibility, even if its’ just for freelancing or contract assignments.
The conversation about how to improve employee retention continues to happen. We spend a lot of time focused on engagement and the employee value proposition. It takes everyone working together to create a workplace that employees want to be a part of – and stay a part of. Ask yourself, “What can I do to help employee retention in the organization?”
Image captured by Sharlyn Lauby outside of Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, NV23