An article published on Wall Street Journal (2013) views hiring employees as an initial step towards the creation of a strong work force. However, there are other steps that must be taken to ensure employees stay put in the company. According to the Wall Street Journal (2013), retaining employees comes after employing them. The PwC study provided in our article has identified four most common reasons why employees leave their organizations. In order of rank the four most common reasons provided by PwC study are:
- Limited career/promotion opportunities
- Lack of compensation
- Job duties assigned to employees are boring, and there are no challenges.
While ordinarily staff retention has been the key focus to most businesses, most managers are yet to master the required ingredients to retain their employees. According to Wall Street Journal (2013), high employee turnover cost the owners of businesses in both time and productivity. This is because, while many companies want new employees to stick for a long time, they view them as an investment that takes time and resources to obtain. Study shows that, the average employee staying power has dramatically fallen in recent years and continues to decrease.
Jeanne Meister (2012) revealed that, an average worker today remains at each of his job for only 4.4 years (Yazinski, 2009). To make matters worse, Meister (2012) provides that the expected tenure of organizations’ young employees is about half the time older employees stay put in a company. In addition to, a study conducted by Development Dimensions International (DDI) provides that only about 51% of the current world new hires feel confident in their decisions to accept a job offer (Yazinski, 2009). Clearly, this shows that today’s employees’ investments are not as secure as employers would hope. It also raises the question of what managers should do to ensure hired employees stay put in their companies.
Where most managers go wrong when hiring and trying to retain staff
As the current economy continues to revive, it is likely that more jobs will be availed and competition will continue to rise. At the same time, retention of employees will prove an increasing threat to most organizations. This is because; while the four reasons provided by PwC make most employees to seek employment somewhere else, most mangers do not understand why most employees are apparently unhappy in their careers. There are a number of areas where managers go wrong, and it includes the following.
- Recruiting overzealously
More than half of today’s hires are unsure why they have accepted an employment position in an organization (Yazinski, 2009). Clearly, this shows that there is a missing link between the job itself and the hiring process managers are using. The missing link has left many employees to suffer from what Mielach (2012) refer to as the “buyer’s remorse” as most employees tries to settle in their role. DDI acknowledges that this problem mainly comes from poor assessment of applicants (Yazinski, 2009).
The DDI Global Selection Forecast (2012) provides that, only 41% of employee recruitment directors have come up with report suggesting that, their pre-employment assessments have the ability to predict better hires. Yazinski, 2009It might seem that in an offer to fill certain positions quickly, managers are bungling pre-screen process and end up missing out on critical information, which will lead them to the correct hire. Because of this, employees find themselves shoehorned in positions, which are completely wrong for them (Yazinski, 2009).
- Ineffective interviews
In most cases, effective pre-assessment is followed by an interview that has been well conducted. However, most unskilled managers end up selecting new employees based on either of the following reasons:
- The manager has over-sold the job position in an offer to secure a new employee.
- The candidate has over-sold him/herself in order to secure the job.
While this blame will mostly be on the manager, today’s job seekers are becoming savvy demographically with the available knowledge, which helps them to get good results in an interview (Yazinski, 2009). Considering this, it is the duty of managers to ensure that they conduct their interviews effectively, ensuring that they select the right candidate for the job position.
- Poor on-boarding
Even after a candidate has successfully passed his interview, he can find himself questioning his decision after a few weeks of accepting the job. This is because, the candidate feels as if he does not fit in his new role. This takes place when the manager has not integrated the new hire appropriately. The result of this failure is the lack of sense of commitment, which is essential to staff retention.
How to retain staff
The PwC study has provided the four most common reasons as to why most employees leave to seek employment elsewhere. It is also true to point out that by limiting the four reasons; most employers will manage to retain their employees. There, the opposite of the following reasons can be used to retain employees in an organization. This is discusses in details below.
- Unlimited career and promotion opportunities
Most employees have created the tendency of correlating raises, bonuses and promotions to the performance in their job and the knowledge they have acquired. At the same time allow employees to improve on their careers makes them to view the company in a different perspective. Enhancing employees’ career can only be done through training. According to Yazinski (2009), employee training helps to reinforce their sense of value. By training them, managers help their staff to achieve goals, as well as make sure they have solid knowledge of their job requirements. Well trained employees can be promoted through the ranks, which is another way to ensure that employees stick to the company.
- Respect and support from supervisors
Respecting and supporting employees in their endeavors is essential if managers want to retain their employees. Respect begins with responsible and effective communication between supervisors and employees. Supervisors can learn acts of respecting their subordinates by trying to treat them fairly. For instance, when a supervisor has cancelled a regular meeting, it is essential that he acknowledges other employees appropriately. Also, it is essential that the supervisor apologizes to employees, giving reasons for the meeting cancellation and a reschedule. By doing this, most employees feel that their presence is respected.
While most employees are likely to stick in a company because career opportunities, it is important that managers learn to show their appreciations for employees’ performance through compensations and benefits. By offering employees things such as competitive salaries, bonus programs, profit sharing, health plans, pension, tuition reimbursement and paid time off allows the manager to send a power powerful message his staff about their significance in the company (Yazinski, 2009). Compensations given to employees need to be meaningful to impact employees’ perception regarding the organization, hence having a remarked influence on its efforts to retain employees. Nevertheless, when an organization promises a reward, it needs to keep that promise.
- Interesting job duties and challenges
When most employees find their jobs to either be unattractive or unchallenging, they tend to seek employment somewhere else. This is because, while most employees might be happy with their employees, they also want to feel challenged. Most of them want to know how their performance contributes to the larger corporate objectives. Unfortunately, interesting job duties are the ones that connect employee goals to the larger organization goals. For instance, after some time, employees are lower level feel they have outgrown their positions; therefore, need to be assigned more challenging duties.
While most employees tend to remain in a company because of its benefits, some employees feel the need to stay put as long as their job duties continue to be challenging. In the IT department, for instance, an employee can be challenged by being assigned to work on a security problem. This job will be both beneficial and challenging to the employee considering the number of IT security threats he will have to deal with. However, other than challenging, this job duty enables the employee to acquire new knowledge regarding his position. The position becomes challenging by nature.
Study has shown than by trying to avoid the four reasons outlined in PwC study, companies are likely to retain their skilled workers. However, study also shows some the mistakes that most managers do, resulting to failure in employee retention. Therefore, while most managers are tried to implement different techniques to retain their employees, it is their duty, also, to ensure that their employee recruitment errors are minimized. As the Wall Street Journal (2013) provides, employee retention will always come after hiring.
DDI Global Selection Forecast . (2012). Global Selection Forecast 2012. Retrieved from DDI World: http://www.ddiworld.com/gsf2012
Mielach, D. (2012, 9 14). 11 Things That Make Workers Happy. Retrieved from Business News Daily: http://www.businessnewsdaily.com/3132-keep-employees-happy.html
Wall Street Journal . (2013). Employee Retention – How to Retain Employees. Retrieved from Wall Street Journal : http://guides.wsj.com/small-business/hiring-and-managing-employees/how-to-retain-employees/
Yazinski, S. K. (2009, 8 3). Strategies for Retaining Employees and Minimizing Turnover. Retrieved from BLR: http://hr.blr.com/whitepapers/Staffing-Training/Employee-Turnover/Strategies-for-Retaining-Employees-and-Minimizing-