In today’s technology-driven world, you can always be sure there will be new innovations, new trends, and new strategies you must quickly incorporate into your daily workflow. One trend that will continue to change today’s workplace is the thought process behind hiring and retaining new employees. Where once the focus was more egocentric, today’s HR strategy revolves around a more humble approach. Now, reducing employee turnover centers on creating a company culture that makes employees want to stay.
Why the focus on employee retention? Consider the dollar cost of employee turnover. This figure can vary based on skill level as well as industry standards, but on average, replacing a new hire costs one-third of their salary.
Instead of the expense involved in replacing employees, it is a far better use of your time and budget to invest in your team. This investment helps to create an engaged workforce and effectively reduces employee turnover. In short, investing in your team is investing in the future of your business.
Measuring Your Investment
How do you invest in your team to ensure they stay with your company? Focusing on your staff’s personal and professional growth and promoting a healthier workplace environment will help to build a strong, positive workplace culture.
Business owners are often hesitant to invest in the personal development of their team for fear of losing them to a better opportunity. Building an engaged workforce is not without risks. Positive workplace culture takes time, effort, and commitment. Ultimately, the employees who stay with your company over the long term can either help or hinder its growth.
You can choose to measure your investment in your staff by the employees that stay or by the ones that leave. Either way, that measurement will tell you a great deal about your company’s culture.
Creating an Engaged Workplace Culture
Positive workplace culture is built on personal relationships and recognition of your staff’s efforts. Even if your company operates with a defined hierarchy, you create an environment of collaboration and acknowledgment when you:
1. Reward Great Work
Everyone likes to be recognized for a job well done. Recognizing employees for positive behaviors can go a long way in terms of creating a positive workplace culture. Investing in an employee recognition system will provide a great return with employee retention.
2. Foster a Healthier Work Environment
Investing in employee health will result in higher productivity. If an employee is healthy physically and mentally, it will show in their work. Award points for walking during lunch or working out. Buy everyone a fitness tracker so they are aware of their daily physical activities.
3. Invest in Personal and Professional Development
When an employer is willing to invest in training and development, it indicates to employees that they have value. Employees who feel valued are more loyal, and fostering this loyalty is what employee retention is all about.
4. Prioritize Work/Life Balance
Expecting employees to focus on work and only work is a recipe for burnout. Most of your staff members have commitments and responsibilities in addition to their job duties. Sometimes these obligations need attention during working hours. If possible, encourage flexible work schedules to promote work/life balance. Offering time to focus on life outside of work establishes loyalty and retention.
5. Host Team-Building Activities
Yes, there is room in the typical work week for a little fun. Hosting team-related activities gives employees a chance to interact with those they may not otherwise work with. Team activities provide an engaging work environment.
6. Compensate Competitively
No matter how strong your office culture is, compensation is a big part of the picture. In fact, salary plays a role in nearly half of all job changes. Still, money isn’t the only factor in compensation. If you are not able to pay monetarily, adding extra benefits such as extra paid time off, flexible work options or an employee stock option program can sometimes be worth as much as a pay raise.
7. Celebrate Work Anniversaries
Getting to know your employees and what matters to them will help you to celebrate their contributions on their work anniversary. Milestone anniversaries mean more when you celebrate with something meaningful to them.
8. Allow Your Talented Team Members to Move Within the Business
For many employees, being held in the same position for years on end is discouraging – doubly so when you hire externally for positions they are qualified to fill. Being known as a company that promotes within is key in employee retention. Promoting within also saves time and money since your employees are already familiar with your company and products or services.
9. Create Individual Development Plans
Working with employees to develop plans specific to their job creates buy-in to the employee’s position and gives a sense of ownership. Being emotionally attached to a position reduces the desire to search elsewhere for another job.
Investing in Your Team Pays Off
Perhaps you’ve heard the statistic that the average worker spends a third of their life at work. Another third, with any luck, is spent sleeping. That leaves just a third for everything that doesn’t involve work or rest. When you look at it through this lens, positive workplace culture is incredibly important. Your employees are investing a significant portion of their lives in your business. It only makes sense to invest in your employees in return.
Combatting employee turnover through increased workplace engagement benefits both the employee and the business in the long term. When you invest in employee well-being, you invest in your company. And isn’t that the best investment of all?