Keeping Employees – How to Keep Your Best Employees
Great employees are your most valuable business resource and keeping employees is like protecting your investment Without their talent, hard work and dedication, your company doesn’t succeed. Plus, losing employees costs you money and lost productivity as you search for and train new staff. Numerous business websites set up calculators to help executives understand the costs of employee turnover, and thus, the value of employee retention.
Your greatest fear as an employer should be the day your top worker decides to leave for the competition or another field. With your star employee goes valuable institutional knowledge and a piece of your company’s reputation that you can’t get back. You can take action to keep your best employees around and insure your success into the future by setting up the right environment to keep your best staff members and help them feel valued in your institution.
Understand Their Motivation
The first key to keeping employees, namely your best employees, is to understand their reasons for staying with your company in the first place. The data may surprise you:
- Men are more likely to stay with a company because of pay than women, though it’s important to about 60 percent of all workers. So keeping employees means money does still talk.
- Two-thirds of employees stay with an employer because they enjoy the work, with more workers over the age of 55 agreeing with that statement.
- Women, 72 percent, say they stay with an employer because the employer strikes the right work-life balance. Fewer men, 62 percent, feel that way.
- About half of workers stay in a place because of their coworkers.
Knowing why your workers may want to stay on the job is the first key to setting up an environment for keeping employees.
Employee Retention Strategies
Retaining your best employees doesn’t take an advanced degree in human resources, but it does take a little finesse and purposeful action. Here are some tips on keeping employees:
- Challenge employees to do their best. An employee who feels bored or like she isn’t working to her full ability will start to wonder if her talents wouldn’t best be used somewhere else. Challenge employees to push their talents to the next level. Recognize an employee’s potential and help them meet it because as the data shows, when employees like the work, they stay.
- Keep the lines of communication open. Employees want to feel a part of the team. Management should share information with employees and not treat each strategy as a secret your employees can’t be trusted with. Share long-term goals, your business mission, key strategies and other information that will help employees do their job. And invite employees to share their ideas, as well. Being heard helps employees feel valued and will go a long way in keeping employees.
- Provide incentives and perks. The data shows that money does in fact talk. If you can afford higher salaries for your best workers or incentives like stock options or bonuses, then do so. If you can’t, give other benefits like flextime, discounted gym memberships or even free coffee in the office (decent coffee, not that cheap stuff). Even small gestures can make employees feel more valued.
- Allow for telecommuting. Work-life balance is important to 72 percent of women employees. That statistic alone should push you to embrace more telecommuting options. Have you joined the cloud yet? Do you enable employees to stay connected to work from home with phone or technology allowances? The business world has changed. Employees don’t want to sit at a desk for 40 or 50 hours a week anymore and plenty of other companies recognize this. And always, as much as possible, promote from within.
- Find value in older workers. Employees over the age of 55 stay with employers because they like what they do and they appreciate work-life balance more than younger workers. Too often, companies look to the new generation of employees when they could leverage more value in older employees.
Hang on to your most valuable resource, your best employees. No fancy marketing gimmick, rebranding strategy or high-end software platform can do as much for your success as the people working for you.