By Benji Rabhan, the founder of SeatMatch, a recruiting company with an industry-leading 92% success rate and an unprecedented 12-month guarantee.
Gallup’s research found that replacing an employee can cost from half to double their annual pay, costing U.S. businesses $1 trillion per year in voluntary turnover costs. Gallup also found that 52% of employees who left voluntarily believe their manager or company could have prevented it.
While many employees leave because of poor hiring, there are often other underlying failings in the way they are employed that can also result in them leaving.
Here you will find seven practical strategies and questions to ask that will increase retention rates.
1. Target Retention Early
Before they start, ask your new employee: “What can we do to make you want to stay?”
Do not wait for exit interviews; get feedback from potential employees at their job interviews.
Ask them: “If you joined us, what could we do to make you want to stay?” By addressing their needs right at the beginning, and continuing to do so, you can create an environment that aligns with employees’ needs, encouraging loyalty and reducing turnover.
2. Improve Onboarding
Ask your employee: “What’s important to you about the onboarding process?”
Gallup research shows that employees who have an exceptional onboarding experience are 2.6 times more likely to be extremely satisfied with their workplace.
Invest in onboarding that goes beyond administration. Ask recent new employees how the process could be improved—these are the people who will know what needs to be included.
Welcome your new hire, and make them feel like part of the company. Ask them what they would like to know. Make sure the expectations are clear. Introduce them to team members, and give them opportunities for early wins.
If you onboard them effectively, your new employee will have a positive experience, be more satisfied and may be more likely to stay.
3. Be Transparent And Open
Ask your employee: “How could we improve?”
Research published in MIT Sloan Management Review revealed that a toxic culture is 10.4 times more influential than pay in predicting a company’s rate of attrition. Create an environment where everyone is comfortable expressing their concerns, issues and ideas. Implement channels for feedback, and have regular check-ins to address any challenges or conflicts promptly. Get everyone to ask: “How could we improve?”
Remember that you also have to implement their suggestions (or get them to), not just ask the question.
When you do this, they know they have been listened to and that their views and ideas are valued. This could make them more motivated to stay.
4. Help Employees Succeed
Ask your employee: “What can I do to make it easier for you to do a good job?”
One common reason for employee dissatisfaction is poor management. A manager’s responsibility is to make it easy for their team to do a good job. Asking them “What can I do to make it easier for you to do a good job?” is a simple way to find out how to do so.
Then you need to do it. You’ll find that most of the answers are quite easy to implement and can often save you time and money in the long run.
5. Align Job Roles With Individual Cognitive Patterns
Ask your employee: “What works best for you?”
Find out what works best for each employee and make sure that wherever possible, jobs can be organized in a way that suits the employee. Very often, you will find asking this question will help you find out how to do so.
Leadership IQ found that 46% of new hires fail within the first 18 months, and 82% of hiring managers saw signs that their new hire would fail.
Some people like the buzz of a busy environment; others need peace and quiet to be able to focus on their work. Some need to discuss things with colleagues, while others don’t. Align job roles with each individual’s natural tendencies. Provide personalized coaching and development opportunities.
Create a culture that values acceptance and understanding of individual differences and promotes learning and growth, allowing individuals to leverage their strengths and achieve success in ways that align with their inherent cognitive patterns.
6. Invest In Individual Growth And Development
Ask your employee: “How would you like to progress here?”
It’s easy to forget about the people you already have when you are hiring. Make sure you check to see if your current employees are interested in career advancement. Then you can work with them to come up with a plan so they can learn the skills they need to acquire and get the experience they need to move into other roles.
If you are thinking of promoting an employee, make sure you let them know. This will reduce the chances of them leaving because they feel they are being overlooked.
An Amazon and Workplace Intelligence survey discovered that 66% of employees who said it was “extremely” or “somewhat” likely they’d leave their jobs in the next year cited a lack of career advancement opportunities as a reason, while 64% cited insufficient skill development opportunities.
7. Recognize And Reward Performance
Ask yourself: “What has this employee done that has helped?”
OC Tanner research (via NBC News) found that an astounding 79% of employees who left their jobs said that a lack of appreciation was a major reason for their decision. When you give feedback, make sure you are specific about what the individual did that made the difference.
For more on how to give feedback, check out the work of Carol Dweck. Without feedback there is no learning so make sure people get what they need. Recognition can increase employees’ loyalty and commitment to the organization.
Employee turnover can be costly and disruptive, but by implementing these seven strategies, you can improve employee retention rates. By asking your employees about what they need and what’s important to them, being open and helping them succeed, you can create a supportive and engaging work environment that encourages employees to stay and thrive.
The original article can be found at: Forbes (Entrepreneurs)