There’s never a good time for a company to experience turnover, but it can be especially difficult in a candidate-driven market when the costs of recruiting, rehiring, and retraining for a position can be higher than usual. If you’re noticing an uptick in resignations, there are a few questions you can ask yourself to help identify the problem and work toward a solution.
Are your salaries at (or above) market rate?
While it’s true that employees rarely change jobs just for a pay increase, earning a fair salary is an important part of an employee’s experience. Employees who are earning strong wages in their market tend to be more engaged, more fulfilled, and less likely to consider other opportunities when they come knocking— and in a market like this, opportunities will come knocking. On the other hand, an employee who feels underpaid might also feel undervalued and underappreciated in other ways, and when they’re given a chance to consider a new role that includes higher pay, they might be more tempted to take it.
If you’re worried that this might be an issue at your company, do some research into market value for employees in your area. If your employees are paid below average, there are a few options. If you’re able to give them a bump up to market value, great! If that’s not in the budget right away, sit down with your employees, communicate honestly with them about your situation, and make a plan for how to get them where they should be salary-wise. Communication and transparency are key when it comes to salary.
Do your employees feel appreciated?
Feeling undervalued at work is one of the main reasons employees cite for leaving a job. Money isn’t the only way to show your team that you appreciate them. Company leaders can make personal phone calls to employees at every level, to touch base, ask questions, and say thanks. You’d be surprised how far a simple phone call can go in making an employee feel special. For example: Send birthday and holiday cards to employees and their families, or host casual company get-togethers (like a cookout or a happy hour) to help build camaraderie and team spirit.
We spend more time at work than any other place in our lives - it makes all the difference in the world when an employee can enjoy going to work because they feel valued.
Is there room for career growth?
Another common reason for employee turnover is a lack of career development opportunities within their current companies. Employees often have a long-term vision for where they want their careers to go. Do you know what your employees’ aspirations are? Sit down with them and talk about what short- and long-term goals they’re working toward.
If there’s not a promotion available in the short term, it helps to let them know that you see a future for them in your company and will work to find them the right role. In the meantime, can you offer stretch assignments, challenging projects, or leadership opportunities? Find ways to help your employees grow their careers and develop new skills within your company, and you can reduce the likelihood that they’ll look for those opportunities somewhere else.
Does your company offer long-term career stability?
In times of economic uncertainty or market instability, employees often feel concerned that their jobs aren’t secure. Many workers still remember the fallout of the 2008 recession, and no one is eager to repeat the experiences they had back then. You don’t need to show your employees every financial detail of the company, but you do need to communicate with them. Do you have a strong backlog of projects? Do you have a plan in place for times of economic headwinds?
Talk to your employees and let them know where the company stands and what you’re doing to ensure that their jobs are safe, no matter what the economy looks like. No news is definitely not good news when it comes to career stability.
There are many reasons that employees choose to leave their jobs, and if you’re experiencing a high turnover rate, it can be hard to narrow down each individual’s reason for leaving. But if you ask yourself these four questions and take a close look at the overall health, engagement, and communication levels within your company, you can start to get a better idea of what you might need to work on to retain your best employees.